Srinagar, Mar 29: Hours after Congress announced that senior political leader and vice chairman Schedule Tribe Cell Yaseen Poswal will support Congress and National Conference joint candidate G.A. Mir, Poswal denied to have declared his support to Mir or ruling party candidate Tasaduq Mufti.
“I have not declared my support to any candidate yet, but I have withdrawn my nomination form today,” Poswal told KNS.
The Gujjar-Bakerwal leader said that he met chief minister Mehbooba Mufti and Congress leaders separately but did not announce his support to any candidate yet.
“I met Chief Minister yesterday at her residence along with my 12 other associates. I put forward major demands like reservation in promotion of ST employees, implementation of Forest Right Act in the state, rehabilitation of landless Gujjar and Bakerwal and redressal of development grievances and demanded assurance from her for their fulfilment,” Poswal told KNS.
Poswal was contesting as independent candidate in Anantnag-Pulwama parliament constituency, and was campaigning in the areas which are populated by GB and Paharai communities. He said that Gujjar, Bakerwal and Paharis together have nearly 2 lakh voters in the Anantnag-Pulwama constituency and claimed that he would have taken more than 30000 votes if he contested.
Sensing that Poswal will cut the votes in these areas, which are necessary in the prevailing volatile atmosphere in the region, both PDP and Congress approached him to withdraw from contesting.
“Our core group is meeting tomorrow where we will take final decision about which candidate to support,” he said.
Asked about Congress press release where the party has announced his support to Mir, Poswal said that he met the Congress leaders, but did not assure them of his support.
Congress this afternoon issued a statement declaring that Poswal announced his decision immediately after meeting senior leader Taj Mohi-u-din at Khanabal Anantnag today.
“The duo held four hour discussions regarding by elections. Poswal assured his full support to G.A. Mir in upcoming by –elections and withdrew his nomination,” Congress spokesman said in the statement.
Poswal told KNS that the Congress leaders promised “to make me vice chairman of Gujjar-Bakerwall Cell”. (KNS)