Our supporters stopped from voting in south Kashmir: Opposition

The opposition parties Thursday alleged that their supporters were detained and not allowed to vote in the fifth phase of the District Development Council (DDC) polls in Dachnipora block of south Kashmir’s Anantnag district.

Peoples Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), an amalgam of various political parties including National Conference (NC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Peoples Conference (PC), CPI (M), Awami National Conference (ANC) and Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Movement (JKPM) had fielded a joint candidate Nisar Ahmad of NC from this block spread over Bijbehara and Pahalgam.

Congress had given a ticket to Irfan Kullar, son of former Congress legislature late Ghulam Nabi Kulla and Apni Party to Bashir Pathan.

The trio is locked in horns with BJP candidate Rifat Sofi, wife of its J&K vice president Sofi Yousuf.

“The polling stations in several villages were opened at 9 am and the voting was not allowed beyond 11:00,” alleged former NC legislator from Pahalgam, Altaf Wani (Kaloo).

He said that their voters were stopped from proceeding towards polling stations.

“Our supporters from Liver, Budroo, Kathsoo, Adlach and Kanelwan villages were stopped from voting,” Kaloo accused. “They should not have made it clear to people before participating in any democratic exercise that they believe in selection not election.”

However, Kaloo hoped that their candidate would still emerge victorious.

Congress candidate, Irfan Kullar also leveled the same allegations.

“Our supporters were not allowed to vote in many polling stations. Voters were scared with tear gas shelling and aerial firing,” he said.

There were reports of clashes, tear gas and aerial firing from several villages.

The block with around 50,000 votes saw polling of around 7500 votes.

Meanwhile, PDP chief and former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti took to Twitter alleging that the armed forces were being used to rig the elections to favour of a particular political party.

“Security forces have cordoned Matribugh in Shopian and are not allowing people to come out to vote under the pretext of inputs about the presence of militants,” the PDP chief alleged.