Joint Rally
BJP and Apni Party workers taking out a joint rally in the Poonch district of J&Ksocial media

Ending all suspense the BJP on Saturday officially joined the campaign in favour of the J&K Apni Party in the Anantnag-Rajouri Lok Sabha constituency as both parties organized a joint rally in the Baflaiz area of Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir.

Although BJP leaders have been organizing small rallies and functions in different parts of the twin border districts of Poonch and Rajouri for the last 10 days, first time Saffron Party leaders shared dias with the Apni Party and officially declared support to Zafar Iqbal Manhas, the candidate of the party on this seat.

National general secretary of BJP Tarun Chugh, J&K BJP president Ravinder Raina, former Deputy Chief Minister Dr. Nirmal Singh, and other senior leaders of the party have kick-started an aggressive campaign in Poonch and Rajouri districts to mobilize support for the Apni Party candidate Zafar Iqbal Manhas.

Seeking support for the Apni Party candidate on the Anantnag-Rajouri seat, Chugh called upon people to push Abdullahs and Muftis to oblivion in the ongoing Lok Sabha elections.
Chugh said the politics of separation and pro-Pakistan played by them needed to be dumped decisively.

"All these years J&K has been a victim of vicious forces who kept the people in the dark for their cheap and ant-national politics", Chugh said, adding, "Abdullahs, Muftis, and Gandhis filled their coffers but kept people of Kashmir in poverty and depravity".

BJP leaders
National general secretary of BJP Tarun Chugh addressing a meeting in Poonch district of J&K to mobilize support for the Apni Party candidate Zafar Iqbal ManhasBJP media cell

BJP working to transfer over one lakh hardcore votes to the Apni Party

The decision of the BJP to officially declare support for Zafar Iqbal Manhas is a big boost for the Apni Party on this seat because in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections the Saffron Party candidate had secured over one lakh votes from twin border districts of Poonch and Rajouri.

Now the party leadership is working assiduously to transfer its hardcore voters to the Apni Party candidate.

Although the party is expecting the support of the majority of Paharis on this seat, the BJP has over one lakh hard-core voters in two border districts of Poonch and Rajouri.

In successive Lok Sabha elections, the BJP managed to get respectable votes from the assembly constituencies of Poonch and Rajouri.

In the year 2019 Lok Sabha elections BJP candidate Jugal Kishore got 1,34,653 votes from the five constituencies of Poonch and Rajouri. Five constituencies including Kalakote which is now part of the Jammu-Reasi Lok Sabha seat.

In the 2019 Parliamentary elections, BJP got the lead from the Nowshera assembly segment with 59,413 votes. From the Darhal assembly segment, BJP got 10360 votes, from the Rajouri segment BJP got 15,976 votes, and party candidate Jugal Kishore Sharma got 1914 votes from the Surankote assembly seat.

From the Mendhar assembly segment, BJP got 3157 votes and the party candidate got 14,638 votes from the Poonch-Haveli segment.

Mehbooba Mufti
PDP media cell

Mehbooba Mufti is contesting election on Anantnag-Rajouri seat

The official announcement of the BJP to support Apni Party candidate Zafar Iqbal Manhas in this seat has made the contest triangular.

Earlier it was observed that the contest was between PDP president Mehbooba Mufti and the National Conference candidate Mian Altaf. However, BJP's decision just a few days before the polling has changed the electoral fight on this seat.

The Anantnag-Rajouri constituency is set to vote on May 25, after a delay from its original May 7 date due to bad weather.

Former Chief Minister and PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti is contesting this seat, with the National Conference fielding veteran Gujjar leader Mian Altaf and the Apni Party represented by prominent Pahari leader Zaffar Iqbal Manhas.

Mehbooba Mufti and her daughter Iltija Mufti have been aggressively campaigning in this constituency, spreading in both Jammu and Kashmir regions.