Srinagar: The People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), an amalgam of seven political parties in Jammu and Kashmir seeking restoration of the erstwhile state’s special status, announced the seat-sharing arrangement for the first phase of the maiden District Development Council (DDC) polls in the Union Territory on Thursday, but did not release the names of the candidates. The seat-sharing arrangement was shared with the media after the candidates of the constituent parties of the alliance filed their nomination papers, the last date for which was Thursday.
The PAGD, which has the National Conference (NC) and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) as its constituents, was formed last month to fight for the restoration of the special status of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, which was revoked by the Centre in August last year. The members of the alliance announced last week that they would unitedly fight the DDC polls, which will be held for the first time in the Union Territory.
The PAGD seat-sharing list was approved by NC president Farooq Abdullah, who is the chairman of the alliance. The NC is contesting 21 of the 27 seats in the Kashmir valley, the PDP, led by Mehbooba Mufti, is contesting four, while the Sajad Lone-led People’s Conference (PC) will field candidates in two seats for the first phase.
The alliance, however, did not reveal the names of the candidates contesting the first phase of the polls. A PAGD leader said given the paucity of time, the names of the candidates could not be shared.
“We all had to work at a breakneck speed. We will update the names of the candidates later because they were busy with the filing of nominations today,” he said. The PAGD has decided to put up joint candidates of its constituent parties in the election, but will contest on the respective party symbols as a single symbol could not be granted to the alliance.
The polls to the DDCs will be held in eight phases from November 28 to December 24, according to a notification issued by the State Election Commission.