JEHANGIR ALI | 16 DECEMBER, 2017
CM Works Around Politics for ‘Brother’ Tassaduq Mufti’s Elevation
Tassadiq Mufti likely to be nominated to the legislative council
SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti's brother, Tassaduq Mufti, has resigned from his post as chief of J&K CM's Grievance Cell, fueling speculations that he may be elected to the upper house of the state legislature and, ultimately, inducted into the council of ministers.
Tassaduq, a renowned cinematographer who arrived on the state’s turbulent political scene following the demise of his father, Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, in 2016, submitted his resignation to the J&K’s chief secretary BB Vyas, on Friday evening.
Tassaduq was appointed as coordinator of Chief Minister’s grievance cell in 2016, a department set-up by the government for speedy redress of grievances that may get caught in bureaucratic red-tape, and other issues facing the public. His brief tenure was lauded by the people cutting across ideological spectrum.
According to the sources in the government, the brother of the chief minister is likely to be nominated to the legislative council against the vacant seat of Vikramaditya Singh, who resigned from the PDP after an acrimonious war of words with the party earlier this year.
Sources said the process for electing Tassaduq, who was PDP’s candidate for Anantnag Lok Sabha seat where the election couldn’t be held due to “tense situation”, to the upper house has already begun with the government sending his name to the Raj Bhawan for clearance by Governor NN Vohra in coming days.
“We have sought the cabinet approval to recommend his nomination to the upper house. Most of our cabinet colleagues have given their nod. Once the cabinet clears his name, the file will go to Mr Vohra for approval and the rest of the process will follow,” a senior PDP minister said, wishing anonymity.
Sources said once the Governor’s nod is achieved, there is likely to be a minor reshuffle in the cabinet and Tassaduq, who is known to have her sister’s ear, is likely to be inducted into the council of ministers.
“Another minister will also be inducted into the cabinet while one of the sitting ministers, who is related to the chief minister, will be dropped. The name of Javed Mustafa Mir is being considered for cabinet berth,” sources said.
Under the J&K Constitution, eight members of the 36-member Upper House are nominated by the Governor who have got expertise in areas like literature, science, art, cooperative movement and social service, on recommendations of the government.
Tassaduq, according to the source, is being recommended in the art category and he is likely to get the tourism portfolio, which is presently lying with Mehbooba.
“With his vast experience in the fields of arts and culture, and his ongoing efforts to preserve the rich cultural heritage of the state, there is no better person to exploit the tourism potential of Jammu and Kashmir and revive our lost glory than him,” PDP youth president, Waheed Para, said.