Mehbooba re-elected PDP President, asks cadre to prepare for Parliament polls

Srinagar, Oct 26 (UNI) Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti was re-elected as Peoples Democratic Party president for a three-year term on Thursday.

This is the sixth consecutive time that Mehbooba Mufti, 63, got elected as president unanimously, party leaders said.

Soon after her election, she asked the party cadre to gear up for the 2024 parliament polls.

“Parliament elections are coming and right away you should get down to work and we should repeat the performance of the 2009 Lok Sabha elections (when PDP won all three Lok Sabha seats in Kashmir),” she said in her address.

She also hit out at her detractors over her controversial ‘toffee and milk’ remark at the peak of the 2016 unrest in Kashmir when she was the chief minister of J&K.

“… I had said that as a mother. Had they listened to me, my daughter Insha (who lost her eyesight in 2016 to pellet guns) would not have been blinded. She became a collateral in clashes between miscreants and security forces,” Mufti said.

The PDP president said her father Mufti Mohammad Sayeed’s decision to form the government with BJP was right

“His decision has been proved right as BJP would have wreaked havoc in J&K if he had not reined them in,” she said.

Earlier, the election for the party president was held here.

PDP vice president Abdul Rehman Veeri proposed Mufti’s name for the president post and was seconded by party general secretary Ghulam Nabi Hanjura, a party leader said.

She was nominated as president by the electoral college from Kashmir and Jammu provinces through a voice vote. The election to the party’s highest post is held after every three years.

A law graduate from Kashmir University, Mehbooba Mufti started her political career in 1996 when she was first elected to the State Legislative Assembly from Bijbehara Anantnag on a Congress ticket. Three years later, Mehbooba Mufti’s father Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, formed the PDP after leaving the Congress.

PDP formed the government in the erstwhile state along with the Congress in 2003 and later, in 2015, with the Bharatiya Janta Party. After the abrogation of Article 370 and the bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union territories, J&K and Ladakh in August 2019, at least 24 former legislators, ministers, parliament members and senior leaders left the PDP.

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