Srinagar: The two friends, who belong to different political parties, have opted to achieve a sole goal to fight in unison at the top court of India against the delimitation of constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir.
The duo politicians include Dr Muhammad Ayoub Mattoo and Haji Abdul Gani, who belong to Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Congress respectively.
The petition against the Centre’s decision to constitute a Delimitation Commission for redrawing Assembly and Lok Sabha constituencies in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir was filed by the duo in March this year.
The petition urged the court to declare the increase in the number of seats from 107 to 114 (including 24 seats in Pakistan administered Kashmir) in Jammu & Kashmir as unconstitutional and ultra vires of the Jammu & Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019.
One of the petitioners, Dr Mattoo, was a dental specialist prior to joining politics on 19 April, 2013. “I joined Peoples Democratic party (PDP) before Late Mufti Muhammad Sayeed. However, as the motive for which I joined the party was not achieved, I left PDP and joined Congress where my father has served for more than 50 years. I was elected as District Working President Kulgam a few days after joining. Nonetheless, as Congress lost elections in Punjab, my workers from Kulgam, who mostly visit Punjab during winters inspired me to join Aam Aadmi Party on April 08, 2022,” he said.
Dr. Mattoo, son of Late Bashir Ahmad Mattoo, is also serving people as a social activist through his family Non-Government Organization (NGO). According to him, he assists the poor and needy people for different purposes like marriages and other things.
“As none of the leaders came forward to fight against the move of Delimitation Commission, we (Dr. Mattoo and Haji Abdul Gani) are close friends and decided to fight the decision in the Supreme Court (SC),” Dr. Mattoo, who is basically from Manzgam Kulgam and presently lives in Chanapora, said.
“There was no interference or directions from anyone with regard to filing a plea in the Supreme Court,” he said, adding that they have objected to why the exercise is being done exclusively for J&K, which is part of India.
Haji Abdul Gani Khan, District President Congress told KNO that he is associated with politics from childhood, saying that since college and university times, he was in touch with politics.
Khan has fought assembly polls two times on Congress tickets from Eidgah constituency after 1996 and also was in opposition for nearly two and a half years when he won the Municipal elections.
“My father Muhammad Sultan Khan was associated with National Conference and my father-in-law too was part of the same political party,” he said.
“I am a person with dignity, which prompted me to knock on the doors of the Supreme Court for the wellbeing of my people. I am not like other leaders, who will stay mum over this grave issue,” Khan said.
“This is the small way through which we will benefit our people. We have high hopes on Supreme Court and expect a favourable decision from the court,” he said—(KNO)