In a major setback, outgoing Chief Minister and National Conference leader Omar Abdullah lost from the Sonawar seat to PDP’s Mohammad Ashraf Mir in Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday. He is also contesting from Beerwah seat, results for which are yet to come.
“Congratulations to Ashraf Mir for his victory in Sonawar. I wish him & the people all good luck for the next 6 years. He’s now my local MLA (sic),” Omar tweeted shortly after the result from Sonawar came.
The chief of the People’s Democratic Party and the man most likely to be the next Jammu and Kashmir chief minister, Mufti Mohammad Saeed, has won from Anantnag. Sajad Lone of the People’s Conference is another high-profile winner from Handwara.
Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir was split four ways as leads at 1 pm from all the 87 seats in the state showed the PDP leading in 31 seats and comfortably ahead of its closest rival and a resurgent Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) which was ahead in 24 seats.
There are indications that the two parties could come together to form the next government in Jammu and Kashmir as the state headed for a hung Assembly. “People have voted against Congress and NC and new forces have emerged. We hae to take that into consideration,” PDP spokesperson Naeem AKhtar said.
“It is a hard decision to make. We will deliberate within the party forum and then come out,” he said.
Almost all the seats that went the BJP way are located in Hindu-majority Jammu region, which accounts for 37 of the 87 seats. The BJP’s face in the Valley, Hina Bhatt, lost to her PDP rival at Amirakadal in Srinagar.