Will NC stick to bruised, battered Congress in 2014?

omarJammu:  Has Jammu and Kashmir’s National Conference (NC) already started looking for new allies following the Congress rout in the state assembly elections in Delhi, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh?

Is knowing that there are no permanent friends or enemies in politics, triggering the party’s hunting for greener pastures? Recent statements and actions of the party’s top brass are indicative.

NC patron and former chief minister Farooq Abdullah announced his party’s candidates for all the three Lok Sabha seats from the valley on Dec 5, barely three days before the votes for the assemblies of Delhi, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh were taken up for counting.

Abdullah made the announcement on the birth anniversary of his father and NC founder, Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah, in Srinagar despite Congress insiders telling  that the NC’s coalition partner wanted to field its candidate for at least one of the three seats.

History seems to be repeating itself for the NC this time again.

When Indira Gandhi lost her Rae Bareli Lok Sabha seat in 1977, Sheikh Abdullah ruled the state with Congress support. Following her defeat, he had started issuing statements against the Congress. This angered Gandhi and the state unit of the party and the Congress withdrew its support, making the government fall.

What needs to be keenly watched in 2104 is whether the NC once again tries to play the “traditional martyr” by distancing itself from the centre by hyping the “unending betrayals from New Delhi” or sticks to a badly bruised and battered political ally of the past.

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