No of BJP legislators from Kashmir goes up to 3
Two candidates of BJP and one each of Peoples Democratic Party and National Conference were on Monday elected to the Legislative Council as all four candidates in the fray for three seats of Kashmir and the reserved seat of Poonch were declared elected in absence of more contenders.
With BJP candidate Ashok Kumar Bhat pulling out of the race, all four candidates were declared elected unopposed to the Upper House of the J&K legislature.
“All four candidates have been declared elected unopposed on the three seats of Kashmir and one seat of Poonch,” Returning Officer, Muhammad Ramzan told Greater Kashmir.
Those declared elected on three seats of Kashmir are Yasir Reshi (PDP), Aga Syed Mahmood (National Conference) and Girdari Lal Raina (BJP) while Pradeep Kumar Sharma (BJP) was elected from the reserved seat of Poonch.
With election of Girdhari Lal Raina (Ajay Bharati), the number of BJP legislators from Kashmir in the Upper House has gone up to three.
Before GL Raina, Sofi Yosouf (Kashmir province) and Surinder Ambardar (nominated member) have made their way to the J&K legislature. Both Ambardar and Raina are close to RSS and its affiliates.
Raina, a resident of Seer Sangrama, is associated with RSS-linked Jammu & Kashmir Vichar Manch and J&K Study Circle.
Meanwhile, the Returning Officer said the polls now would be held only for two seats of Jammu province on April 17.
“Three candidates are in the fray for two seats of Jammu province,” he said.
As already by Greater Kashmir, the ruling allies, as per seat-sharing pact, would first ensure victory of PDP candidate Abdul Qayoom Dar on one of the two seats of Jammu province by polling 30 votes in his favour.
The ruling combine is left with only 28 votes for its second candidate, Choudhary Vikram Randwaha while as the opposition too has 28 votes for Thakur Balbir Singh of Congress.
According to observers, three independent MLAs—Hakim Muhammad Yasin, Er. Rashid and Pawan Gupta—have a key role in deciding outcome of the second seat of Jammu province.