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Independents hold the key in many DDCs | India News


SRINAGAR: The victory from a large number of independents in DDC polls in Jammu and Kashmir is a clear indication that a sizeable portion of the electorate is eager to see the emergence of new leadership in their respective areas. Up to 39 independents have won the elections and almost 30 of them are leaders, representing a quarter of the total 280 seats. This makes independents king-makers on many councils.
The victory of up to seven independents in Srinagar, representing 50% of the total 14 seats, is an example of how the electorate rejects established political parties and seeks an alternative. The People’s Alliance for the Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), which is based in the city, could win just five seats, while the BJP and Apni Party each won one seat. If all the independents in Srinagar unite, they can keep the PAGD out of power in the summer capital of the Union territory.
In several other districts, such as Shopian, where PAGD was ahead by only five seats while independents were leading in four seats when the latest reports came in, the Alliance will have to rely on smaller or independent parties to take control of the DDC.
Of the nearly 70 independents who have won or are leading, the Valley represents the lion’s share, far surpassing the independents who have won in the Jammu region.
Interestingly, the recently launched Apni Party of Jammu and Kashmir, headed by Altaf Bukhari, has done well by winning 10 seats.

Times of India