J-K ministers poll affidavits show discrepancies in age
M I Jehangir
Srinagar, Nov 6 (PTI) While people age with every passing year, two Jammu and Kashmir Ministers would want us to believe otherwise.
According to senior National Conference leader and Higher Education Minister Mohammad Akbar Lone and Housing Minister Nawang Rigzin Jora of Congress, their ages have increased by four and three years respectively since the last assembly elections in 2008.
Lone in his election affidavit filed before the returning officer for Sonawari assembly segment in Bandipora district on November 3 has shown his age as 67 years.
The National Conference candidate, who was Speaker of the Legislative assembly for nearly four years from 2009 to 2013, had declared his age as 63 years in the affidavit filed in October 2008 when he contested the Assembly elections.
Jora, who is the Congress candidate from Leh Assembly segment, has shown his age as 56 years in the affidavit for the forthcoming elections against 53 years in the 2008 state elections.
However, it is totally opposite in the case of opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate from Nubra in Ladakh region of the State.
Tashi Gyalson, who unsuccessfully contested from Leh assembly segment in 2008, was only 31 years old when he filed his nomination papers six years ago.
However, according to the affidavit filed by Gyalson this year, he is 39 years old. Clearly, he has aged two years more than the six years that passed by between the two elections.
Lone has also lost some of the properties he had declared in the 2008 affidavit.
The Minister, who was in the opposition from 2002 to 2008, had declared ownership of 5.6 hectares of land and five residential houses in various parts of the state. The minister’s total worth then was Rs 3.5 crore.
In the latest affidavit, Lone has shown land holding of 4.75 hectares and ownership of four houses only. These properties are now valued at Rs 7.40 crore.
However, the bank deposits have increased considerably from Rs 30,000 in 2008 to Rs 7.5 lakh at present.
National Conference president Farooq Abdullah was at the centre of a controversy ahead of Lok Sabha polls this year over his age.
Abdullah had declared his age as 66 years in the affidavit during the 2008 assembly elections but mentioned it as 77 years in the affidavit submitted along with his nomination papers for Lok Sabha elections in April this year.