Two AJK women win unopposed in Kupwara

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SRINAGAR: Two women from AJK, who had married to former militants have won Panchayat elections unopposed in Kupwara district of North Kashmir. One of them, Dilshada 30, who was born in Chitter village of Muzaffarabad, was elected Sarpanch unopposed in Prangroo Kalamabad Mawar in Handwara.
Two nomination papers had been filed for the Sarpanch Ward but one of the nominees withdrew the papers, leading to the election of Dilshada unopposed.
Dilshada married to Mohammad Yousuf Bhat whom she met in Muzaffarabad where he had gone for arms training after crossing over to the LoC in 1997. Bhat remained there till 2012 before returning home along with Dilshada and five children via Nepal.
“I was only 15 years old when I along with other boys crossed over to LoC and I was not mature enough then and followed others who crossed the LoC,” he said, adding, “After landing in Muzaffarabad, I started doing business and set up a shop and during my stay married there.”
Dilshada is not alone from her native area to have joined the poll fray in Handwara. Another woman from PoK has been elected unopposed as Sarpanch and Panch in Khumriyal area of Kupwara district.
Arifa Begum, 35, had come to Kashmir along with her husband Ghulam Mohammad Mir via Nepal in 2010. Arifa, originally a resident of Palandari village in Muzaffarabad, had submitted nomination papers for both Panch as well as Sarpanch Wards in Khumriyal-B in the frontier district.
There were no nominations against her and as such she has been declared elected unopposed for both Panch and Sarpanch Wards. Her husband Ghulam Mohammad Mir said that he crossed over Line of Control (LoC) in 2001 and remained there till 2010 before returning home via Nepal along with his wife Arifa.