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Emotional touch—Er Rashid’s son paves way for jailed father to Lok Sabha

Major candidates in race face massive defeat; Truth has won today, says Abrar Rashid

Baramulla, June 4: In an unexpected and extraordinary event response, the Lok Sabha elections for the Baramulla Parliamentary constituency seat saw a champion in the form of Engineer Abdul Rashid Sheikh, an independent and incarcerated candidate, with his triumph over big guns like National Conference’s (NC) Omar Abdullah and Peoples Conference’s (PC) Sajad Gani Lone, sending ripples through the political landscape of Kashmir.

Abdul Rashid Sheikh @ Er Rashid, a former Member of Legislative Assembly, has been behind bars for the last over four years. His influence and legacy remain intact, as his son Abrar Rashid, took on the monumental task of campaigning for his father, which resulted in victory with a huge margin.

Abrar (26), as per the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), is a student, pursuing MSc at Islamia College of Srinagar.

With limited resources and his father’s absence, Abrar managed a magical campaign, reaching out to the grassroots, with the emotional resonance of his father’s plight.

Travelling across the constituency, Abrar and his brother Asrar met with the people, addressing their concerns and conveyed his jailed father’s vision for the future.

Using social media, a powerful tool, Abrar used it to highlight his father’s incarceration, garnering sympathy and support from a broad spectrum of the electorate, especially young and the first time voters.

The efforts and the emotional appeal added a personal touch that resonated deeply with voters.

“I promise, the day my father will be in the parliament, he will bring the jailed people out,” Abrar had said, in one of his speeches during campaigning.

“You have to come out on the polling day May 20 and build the pressure of the cooker ‘Pressure Cooker, AIP party’s symbol’, in a way that can break the locks of the Tihar Jail,” he asked people.

Meanwhile, with the unexpected results, Er Rashid, through the tireless efforts of his son, defeated seasoned politicians Omar Abdullah and Sajad Gani Lone, which indicated a clear message from the people “a call for justice, change and a new political order”.

Speaking to KNO, Abrar thanked people, who came out in support of them in a large number. “I thank everyone who came out to vote for my father, with the same enthusiasm they showed during campaigns,” he said.

He said that people, who were criticising their moves and campaigns, stating their supporters are non-voters and they (AIP) had miscalculated, must have got the clear message from the people, and he’s sure that they won’t find it easy to calculate their votes.

“It was not his own decision to take part in the process, but the political affairs committee, who decided that Er Rashid should fight the election and I as a campaigner, being his elder son,” Abrar said.

He said that initially he faced challenges, as being inexperienced, however, the support, especially from youth, made him proceed. “I believe youth are the game changers and it’s the responsibility of the government to provide them a safe environment, taking today’s participation as an example, the government should make the lives of youth easier and safer,” he said.

Abrar didn’t rule out the support of the other political as well as social activists, saying it was only possible due to their support and love, who stood with him from the day first. “They supported us in a time when the AIP was politically weak,” he said, while thanking the political supporters.

“As of now, I am studying. Let my exams finish first, I will see the future of my political career (if it happens) later,” Abrar said upon being asked if he joins the same line.

Notably, Awami Itihad Party’s supremo Er Rasheed stood tall in the Baramulla parliamentary constituency Lok Sabha elections. He got the massive support and a huge success with over all 472481 votes.


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