"Pakistan`s election rigging reminiscent of Kashmir`s `mass electoral fraud`"

In the backdrop of alleged electoral rigging in Pakistan`s general election, tensions have flared between the Jammu and Kashmir National Conference (NC) and the People`s Democratic Party (PDP), key members of the People`s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), as they exchange accusations of past electoral malpractices.

Iltija Mufti, daughter and Media Advisor of former Jammu and Kashmir state chief minister and PDP president Mehbooba Mufti, triggered the exchange Friday with an oblique reference to the role of the National Conference in the alleged rigging of Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir in 1987, newswire PTI reported.

“Sad to see victory snatched from @ImranKhanPTI and elections rigged in Pakistan. For the people of Kashmir, it`s reminiscent of the 1987 election followed by mass electoral fraud. Uncanny similarities between the crackdown on Jamaat leaders then and PTI now,” Iltija Mufti posted on X.

She did not directly name the National Conference in her post and urged the Pakistan Army to “learn from the blood-soaked history of Jammu and Kashmir”.

“Lamhon nay khata ki sadiyon nay saza payi (the price of momentary mistakes is paid over centuries). People of J-K continue paying a price with their lives because of the violence triggered by rigged 1987 elections. Pakistan Army should take a leaf from our blood soaked history to understand the consequences of manipulating popular mandate,” she added.

National Conference spokesperson Ifra Jan reacted to the apparent insinuation.

Ifra Jan accused PDP founder and then Union Home minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed of plunging Jammu and Kashmir into turmoil by appointing Jagmohan Malhotra as Governor of the state in 1990.

“It`s disheartening to witness Imran Khan`s election loss, evoking memories of decades-long struggles against proxy parties targeting JKNC`s mandate. The echoes of 1989, when then HM Mufti Sb appointed Jagmohan as Governor, plunging J-K into turmoil, feel hauntingly familiar,” Jan posted on X within an hour of the PDP leader`s post.

“In 1989, the entire cabinet, led by then CM Dr Abdullah, resigned because none of us wanted on our hands what was coming if Jagmohan was appointed the Governor. Yet, the HM was adamant and then the saga of loss hit its highest ebb in 2014. I feel the helplessness of those voters!” Jan added.

She was referring to the alliance between PDP and BJP after the 2014 Assembly elections which threw up a hung verdict on Jammu and Kashmir.

NC leaders have in the past termed the alliance as a betrayal of people`s mandate as one of the main campaign point of the PDP in the 2014 elections was to stop the BJP from coming to power in the state. (With inputs from PTI)

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