Srinagar, Mar 8: The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) like rest of the valley is in crisis in Budgam district as well where some big wigs are likely to desert the party in the coming days.
The party has yet to recover from the shock of Dr Shafi Ahmad Wani’s joining the NC. The rumors of ex MLA from Beerwah constituency, present MLC and senior leader Saifudin Bhat’s leaving the party are also rife.
Sources told Early Times that Saifudin Bhat who is a known face of party in Budgam is planning to join National Conference soon. Bhat who lost 2014 elections by a narrow margin of 1000 votes was offered MLC seat by the then CM Mufti Mohammad Syed.
Sources said Bhat had problems with party colleague, Altaf Bukhari and rebelled against the party to join Sajjad Lone’s PC. However, the NC leadership has approached him and offered him a mandate.
Pertinent to mention Saifudin Bhat had got more than 25000 votes in 2014 assembly elections and lost to Hakim Yaseen of PDF by a narrow margin. It is said that Saifudin Bhat has his vote bank intact and if Bhat gets NC’s 8000 plus committed votes in 2019 assembly elections he would win by a very good margin against Hakim Mohammad Yaseen.
Saifudin Bhat, however, seems reluctant to join NC at this moment as he is the member of legislative council and gets hefty salary and has huge CDF money at his disposal. Bhat apprehends that assembly elections might get deferred and that is the reason he is also not able to take a final call to join NC at this point of time because if he joins NC he would have to resign as MLC automatically.
Manzoor Wani or even Hakim Yaseen could also join PDP if Bhat joins NC in the coming months.
Right now PDPs only face in Khansahib constituency is a youth leader Shahnawaz Mir who was recently made PDP District President Youth wing , but it is not clear whether party would filed him from Khansahib or not.
In Chadoora constituency, former Minister Javid Mustaffa Mir has left the party and PDP is not even able to get a potential candidate who could be fielded in upcoming assembly elections.
Some Party leaders are said to be planning to field PDP Youth leader Er Nazir Ahmad Yatoo from Chadoora but Nazir is reluctant to contest as he hails from Chararisharief constituency and has no mass appeal in Chadoora. Right now NC leader and ex MLA Chadoora Ali Mohammad Dar has better footing in the constituency and he has been unofficially declared as party candidate for 2019 assembly polls. One real estate dealer Mohammad Yaseen who joined PDP recently is also claiming for party ticket but party is looking for some alternate face which it is not able to get till date since Javid Mustaffa resigned from PDP. Mustaffa is said to be in touch with Shah Faesal and Congress
On the other hand Nazir Yatoo has a mass appeal in Chararsharief , but party is not ready to drop their long tome loyal Ghulam Nabi Lone Hanjoora who was Minister for Agriculture and Revenue in Mehbooba Mufti’s cabinet until recently. People in Chararsharief say that it was Yatoo who played a role in 2014 assembly elections that helped Hanjura to defeat A R Rather NC stalwart and ex Finance Minister. Yatoo is said to have been assured MLC seat in 2014 by PDP leadership but he was denied the same and instead Saifudin Bhat was made given membership of legislative council. Reliable sources say that several parties including Shah Faesal , NC and Peoples Conference are in touch with Yatoo but he is not taking any call as party might field him from Chararsharief constituency at the last moment because many party workers in the Charar constituency are not happy with Hanjura. It is said that Hanjura’s own brother is planning to join some other political party as he has developed serious differences with brother.
In Budgam constituency Muntazir Mohiudeen party district president and 2014 assembly election candidate is also not active in politics f