BJP leaders
BJP media cell

Breaking the silence on not fielding a candidate on the much-talked-about Anantnag-Rajouri Lok Sabha seat of Jammu and Kashmir, the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) on Saturday said that the party is devising a strategy to ensure the defeat of dynastic political parties on all the three seats of Kashmir Valley.

"Although we have not fielded any candidate on three seats of Kashmir Valley, one thing is clear that only BJP supported candidates will emerge victorious of these seats", the president of the J&K unit of BJP Ravinder Raina said.

"As far as BJP is concerned we have a strong mass base as well as organizational structure and network in every nook and corner of Kashmir Valley", Raina said, adding, "The central leadership took the decision not to field a candidate on Anantnag-Rajouri seat in the interest of the people of Kashmir Valley".

Defending the decision of the party leadership not to field a candidate for the Anantnag-Rajouri seat, Raina said that BJP usually contests elections not for the sake of contest but for winning the seats.

"I think the party has decided in the right perspective", he said, adding "As far as BJP is concerned we will continue our work to further expand our footprint in Kashmir Valley".
When asked about the party's stand on three seats of Kashmir Valley, Raina said that as of now the BJP has shifted its focus on the Jammu-Reasi Lok Sabha seat after the completion of polling on the Udhampur-Doda Parliamentary constituency.

"Decision of three seats of Kashmir Valley will be taken after April 26 after completion of polling on two seats of Jammu province where the party is trying to make hat-tricks", Raina said.

Pahari leader
A delegation of Pahari leaders led by BJP leader Vibodh Gupta meets Amit ShahBJP media cell

With an eye on Anantnag-Rajouri BJP granted ST status to Paharis

With an aim to open its account in Kashmir Valley in the Lok Sabha elections, the BJP had granted Scheduled Tribe status to the ethnic Pahari tribe during the last session of the Parliament.

The BJP had devised a comprehensive strategy to ensure the victory of the party on this Parliamentary seat which spread in both the Jammu and Kashmir regions but at the end of the day party has not fielded any candidate on this Parliament segment.

Keeping in view the deep ethnic divide among Scheduled Tribes (STs) and Paharies in this mountainous belt, the party leadership was focussing on Pahari Muslims to enhance their winning prospects in the coming Lok Sabha polls.

The entire Poonch district and Rajouri, Nowshera, and Thanna Mandi Assembly constituencies of Rajouri district are now part of the newly carved-out Anantnag-Rajouri Parliamentary seat. Anantnag, Kulgam, and Shopian districts are other parts of this seat from South Kashmir.

The Anantnag-Rajouri Lok Sabha constituency now comprises assembly segments including Zainapura, Damhal Hanjipora, Kulgam, Devsar, Dooru, Larnoo, Anantnag West, Anantnag, Pahalgam, Nowshera, Rajouri, Darhal, Thanna Mandi, Surankote, Poonch and Mendhar.

BJP likely to support Apni Party, PC on Lok Sabha seats of Kashmir

Although the party leadership has maintained a guarded silence, it is believed that BJP is going to support Apni Party candidates Zafar Iqbal Manhas on the Anantnag-Rajouri and Ashraf Mir on the Srinagar-Budgam seats.
The party is likely to support the Peoples' Conference on the Baramulla seat where the vice-president of the National Conference Omar Abdullah is fighting against Sajad Lone.