Jolt to NC ahead of Assembly polls, senior leader Mehboob Beg quits party

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Srinagar, Nov 16 (PTI) In a major jolt to ruling National Conference ahead of the assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir, veteran leader and former Lok Sabha MP Mehboob Beg on Sunday quit the party and extended unconditional support to his PDP rival Mufti Mohammad Sayeed.

Beg, son of National Conference stalwart Mirza Afzal Beg, announced his decision to quit the party at a workers meet at his residence at Sarnal in Anantnag district.

J&K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah

He also turned down the NC mandate given to him to contest the elections from Anantnag assembly segment, which is going to polls in the fourth phase of elections on December 14.

"I extend unconditional support to Mufti Mohammad Sayeed (PDP candidate from Anantnag) as he is the only person who can halt the BJP's march in Kashmir," Beg told the workers.

Beg, however, said he will not be joining the PDP. Giving reasons for his quitting the ruling party, Beg said he was never taken into confidence by the party leadership and his suggestions on organisational matters and development works in Anantnag were ignored.

Lashing out at National Conference ministers in the state government, Beg, who was a state health minister in Farooq Abdullah-led Government, alleged that they were worried only about their own constituencies.

"One minister would look after development of constituency of another minister and vice versa. Since Anantnag had no minister, it got neglected in terms of development," he said. 

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