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Omar And Mehbooba Face Electoral Heat on Kashmir’s Turf

June 6, 2024

Srinagar: In the recently held parliamentary elections, there is a bigger message as far as the Kashmir Valley is concerned. Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, the two former chief ministers who have remained in power, tasted bitter defeats by massive margins.

Omar Abdullah is no stranger to electoral losses against greenhorns. In 2002, Abdullah had to swallow a bitter pill when Qazi Afzal, then affiliated with the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), secured a win over him in the Ganderbal Assembly segment. Similarly, in 2014, Mohammad Ashraf Mir, then fighting polls on the PDP ticket, defeated Omar Abdullah on the Sonwar Assembly seat.

However, Abdullah has now tasted the most significant defeat in the 2024 parliamentary elections while contesting against a popular independent candidate, Engineer Abdul Rashid Sheikh, popularly known as Engineer Rashid.

Abdullah shared a piece on his X (formerly Twitter)handle to suggest that vote for Rashid will somehow revive the secessionist movement in Kashmir.

Instead of accepting electoral defeat with grace.

Results are a clear reflection of the current ground reality. It was a vote in favour of the incarcerated politician and against the political elite.

Similarly, Mehbooba Mufti, another former chief minister, lost back-to-back parliamentary elections from south Kashmir—allegedly her bastion—in 2019 and 2024.

Both Abdullah and Mufti indulged in verbal gymnastics and talked at each other instead of talking about the real issues confronting people. Voters made up their mind to humble both.

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