In a massive setback to the National Conference (NC), the Congress, and the Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Kashmir valley, an independent leader- Junaid Mattu- was elected as the mayor of Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC). He was supported by the Sajjad Lone’s People’s Conference and BJP.
Junaid Mattu got 40 out of total 70 votes in the election held at SMC office in Karan Nagar. His nearest rival- Muhammad Saleem Lone- who was backed by PDP, NC and Congress managed to get 26 votes while four were declared invalid. Mattu contested the SMC election as an independent from four wards and emerged victorious on three of them.
Junaid Mattoo, independent supported by Sajjad Lone’s People’s Conference and BJP has won d Mayor post of Srinagar. He polled against d combined candidate of PDP, NC and Congress by 40 votes to 26 votes. Congrats Junaid and Sajjad n all Corporators.
— Ram Madhav (@rammadhavbjp) November 6, 2018
Junaid Mattu is a former spokesperson of Jammu and Kashmir National Conference. He quit the party citing ‘humble disagreement’ with the boycott of local body polls. On Twitter, Junaid Mattu had said, “Based on my humble disagreement with the party’s decision to boycott the upcoming ULB and Panchayat Polls, I have just sent my resignation from the party to the JKNC General Secretary. 1/n.”
“I strongly believe that leaving our grassroots democratic institutions open to misrepresentation would inflict serious harm on the State and also wreak havoc with our social fabric and cultural legacy. 2/n.”
“I will announce my candidature for the ULB elections from Srinagar tomorrow insha Allah and I remain committed to serving my people and helping the city I grew up in meet the challenges it’s faced with. I won’t be addressing the media or taking any questions today. 3/3 (sic).”
Finally, his commitment and dedication for democracy has paid off. Now, he is the new mayor of the Srinagar city and he defeated the dynasty politicians in their own fort. The city needs young, enthusiastic, active and educated person like him.
Sajjad Lone along with rebel PDP MLA and influential Shia leader Imran Raza Ansari played a key role in the victory of Junaid Mattu. They launched a positive campaign in favor of Junaid Mattu. Sajjad Lone was a minister in the BJP-PDP coalition government in the Jammu and Kashmir from the BJP quota.
Following the Central Government’s plea to reconsider the decision regarding Article 35A after the local polls, the two prominent regional parties of the state- NC and PDP- had boycotted the municipal cum panchayat polls held in various towns, districts and villages of Jammu & Kashmir.
In the results of Urban and local body elections, the BJP scored victory in the Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC) elections and also made inroads in some areas of Kashmir by winning 100 wards in the valley.
The centre did everything to ensure that democracy at the local level functions smoothly. The boycott by the NC and the PDP only signified their extreme intolerance of the political parties towards the democratic rule in the valley. It’s good to see that there are people like Junaid Mattu in the valley who have complete faith on democratic ideals. Mattu’s victory is a big slap on the face of all those parties who tried to disrupt the democratic process. Their nefarious agenda failed and democracy has come out with flying colors.
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