‘Amarnath land row helped BJP in Jammu’December 28th, 2008 - 5:27 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Dec 28 (IANS) The migrant Kashmiri Pandits in the Indian capital have attributed the good showing of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the Jammu and Kashmir elections to the Amarnath land row that had seen the state divided along religious lines.The BJP is leading on 12 seats in the Jammu region, compared to just one seat it won in 2002.
“There is a polarization in Jammu and Kashmir. The BJP’s good performance in the Jammu region is a manifestation of this polarization,” national spokesman of Panun Kashmir Kamal Haq told IANS.
Aditya Raj Kaul of Roots in Kashmir echoed Haq’s sentiments.
“It was very much expected. People really wanted to vent their anger as their religious sentiments were hurt. Amarnath was definitely an issue in Jammu and this is evident in the BJP leading in many of the strong bastions of the Congress,” Kaul said.
However, others feel the poll outcome is a reflection of the “regional aspirations” of the Jammu region.
“It (BJP’s performance in Jammu) should be seen as an expression of the regional aspirations of Jammu rather than religious sentiments. Even in the last elections, BJP was trailing as a close second in all the constituencies in Jammu, so the Amarnath issue has impacted only marginally,” said Rashneek Kher of Roots in Kashmir.