In a set-back for the Gupkar Alliance in Jammu and Kashmir, Sajad Gani Lone-led J&K People's Conference has pulled out of People's Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD). In a letter to Dr Farooq Abdullah, President PAGD, Sajad Lone stated, "We are divorcing from the alliance not its objectives".
People's Conference chairperson Sajad Lone announced his party's exit from the seven-party conglomerate PAGD, saying some constituents of the grouping had fielded proxy candidates in the District Development Council (DDC) elections. The Gupkar Alliance had swept the maiden DDC polls by winning 110 seats. The BJP had emerged as the single largest party by getting 74 seats after securing the largest vote share in results announced on December 23, 2020.
"On the face of it, PAGD won these elections unambiguously having won the maximum number of seats. We can't hide statistics and apart from the number of seats that PAGD won, other important statistical variable in the context of August 5 (Abrogation of Article 370) is the number of votes polled against the PAGD,” Lone said in the letter released to the media.
He said he believes the votes polled against the PAGD are mostly those cast by proxies of PAGD constituent parties against official PAGD candidates.
“And the net outcome of selectively voting for and against PAGD is a very poor vote share. This is certainly not the vote share that people of J and K deserved post-August 5," Lone said.
(With inputs from PTI)