Lobbying For Rajya Sabha Seats Begins in Jammu and Kashmir
Notification for Rajya Sabha seats has been issued
NEW DELHI: With Rajya Sabha elections approaching in Jammu and Kashmir, the political parties in the state are in serious deliberations with their counterparts to gain the numbers and get their favourite leaders elected.
The Citizen learnt that all political parties in Jammu and Kashmir are in serious parleys with their supporting parties to get the leaders of choice elected to the upper House of Parliament on February 7, day announced for Rajya Sabha polls in state. This coincides with the Assembly elections in Delhi.
The Congress party, which has only 12 elected members in the State Assembly is more concerned as their top two leaders PCC Chief Saif-ud-Din Soz and Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad are due to contest the polls again.
According to sources, Congress is looking at both NC and PDP to support their candidates.
"We have kept the options open and will definitely require support for Rajya Sabha" said senior congress leader Ghulam Ahmad Mir.
Mir added that they are ready to accept support from both PDP and NC if they change their mind and support the " disciplined and secular' congress party.
Azad and incumbent PCC chief Soz were elected to the Rajya Sabha in 2009 with support from the then alliance party National Conference.
Since the combined strength of the NC and the Congress in the Assembly was over 45, the alliance could ensure seats for both the NC candidates, Farooq Abdullah and Muhammad Shafi Uri, to the Rajya Sabha in 2009.
This time, however, there is no alliance between the NC and the Congress. Nonetheless, the Congress leadership is trying to woo the NC leadership so that the two together could prevent the PDP and the BJP from winning all the four Rajya Sabha seats.
Since Azad had lost the Lok Sabha elections, which he had contested from Udhampur-Kathua constituency in May last year, he must get re-elected to the Rajya Sabha.
Meanwhile Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which made a remarkable advancement in Jammu and Kashmir politics by winning 25 seats in recently concluded state elections is too eyeing on the Rajya Sabha Seats from the state.
The top State BJP leaders in Jammu and Kashmir said that they are serious about the Rajya Sabha elections and will make every effort to win at least two seats from the seats.
“We are very serious about RS polls and want to gain maximum because we have the numbers,” said BJP’s State Secretary (Organization), Ashok Koul.
He said that the BJP leaders are “busy devising a strategy to ensure at least two seats go into our kitty.”
Sources in the BJP also added that party is in touch with independent legislators in Kashmir and Jammu to ensure smooth sail in the RS polls.
Pertinently, no party in the State is in a position to win a seat on its own.
Four seats falling vacant are of Ghulam Nabi Azad, Saifuddin Soz, Muhammad Shafi and Ghulam Nabi Ratanpuri. The term of Azad and Soz will end on February 10 while the term of Ratanpuri and Uri ends on February 15.
According to the officials at the Election Commission, the 87 elected members of the legislative assembly will have to vote thrice to elect the four members.