DDC elections an opportunity for young leadership to announce its arrival on the political scène of J&K; Credibility of ex-legislators at stake in Poonch district
POONCH TODAY NEWS
POONCH: This is for the first time after 1947 that District Development Councils elections are taking place in eight phases. Union government and J&K UT government have created a history by holding the first ever DDC elections and political observer believe that these DDC elections will give an opportunity to young leaders to announce their arrival on the political scene of J&K. Earlier, elections to Block Development Councils were held in J&K in 2019 to strengthen Panchayati Raj institutions. After the successful completion of DDC elections, J&K will have all the three tiers of Panchayati Raj institution working on the ground and it will give an opportunity for people to formulate their own developmental plans at local level with the full involvement of their representatives at Panchayat, Block and District level. In Poonch and Rajouri districts, many young educated leaders have shown their presence by fighting the DDC elections, where as few ex-legislators are also fighting the same. Moreover, big political names, who were once considered as candidates for MLA elections, are also fighting the DDC elections as they don’t want to give space to others to occupy their political prospects for the future. In Rajouri district, many NC, PDP and Congress leaders are not happy over seat sharing arrangement among Gupkar alliance members and they are supporting proxy candidates. In Surankote area of Poonch district, ex-legislator Ch Mohd Akram is fighting the DDC elections and his credibility is at stake, because he is facing another young rebel Congress leader Shahnawaz Choudhary, who is fighting independently. Similar, ex-MLA Haveli Shah Mohd Tantray is fighting from Loran, facing tough competition from a young educated Advocate Riyaaz Choudhary, son of Late Ch Basher Naaz, a three time legislator. Tantray is also facing tough competition from BDC Chairman of Mandi Shamim Ganai. In Mandi, there is also a direct fight between Dr Shenaz Ganai, ex-MLC and Atiqa Jan, mother of Ajaz Jan, ex-MLA and credibility of both Dr Shenaz and Ajaz Jan is at stake. In Poonch block, there is a direct contest between BJP leader M.R Chisti and Congress candidate Ch Abdul Gani. In Mendhar, two powerful young leaders of PDP and Congress are likely to win their respective constituencies, because of their strong political base, where National Conference is facing internal rivalry in the party cadre. On one hand, traditional political leaders are fighting for their survival, but on the other hand, these DDC elections have given a promising opportunity for young leadership to shape the fortunes of their respective areas, if elected. By holding elections to all the three tiers of Panchayati Raj institutions, Union government has been trying its best to start a new developmental phase in the J&K UT with the participation of people at grass root level.