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NC leader Ali Mohammad Naik passes away

Srinagar: Senior National Conference (NC) leader and former speaker of Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly, Ali Mohammad Naik, passed away here.

He was 87.

Naik, a resident of Tral in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district, was suffering from chest disease and breathed his last while being taken to a hospital last night.

He had served as general secretary of Plebiscite Front under NC founder and former chief minister Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah.

The Plebiscite Front advocated holding of a referendum in the state for deciding its future.

In 1967, Naik left the Plebiscite Front and contested assembly elections from Tral constituency.

He represented the constituency till 1977 and was also elected the deputy speaker of the Assembly in 1972.

He was one of the many NC leaders and MLAs who toppled the Farooq Abdullah government in 1984 by allying with Ghulam Mohammad Shah and was made the revenue minister in Shah’s cabinet.

However, he later returned to the NC and was elected speaker of the Assembly in 1996.

In 1999, he defeated former chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed in Lok Sabha elections from Anantnag constituency of South Kashmir.

Naik was badly injured in a militant attack in 2006.

He is survived by two sons.

PTI