People’s Democratic Party (PDP) patron Mufti Muhammad Sayeed has said any upcoming formal talks will revolve around the party’s alliance agenda shared with the BJP before making any headway on a common minimum programme to run a coalition government in the state.
Speaking exclusively to HT for the first time since results were declared on December 23, Sayeed said he yearns for “a stable and successful government in the state”.
The four-point alliance agenda includes resumption of dialogue with Pakistan to take forward peace process talks with separatists, revocation of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) and safeguards for state subjects laws and Article 370, which gives unique powers to the state.
A government remains elusive in Jammu and Kashmir after assembly results threw a fractured mandate, with PDP winning 28 and BJP 25 seats in the 87-member assembly. Any party requires 44 members to form a government and J-K is staring at a coalition government once again with equations keep changing for the PDP between BJP and Congress with 12 seats.
Akhtar sounded positive on Sunday about initiation of formal dialogue with the BJP to work out a coalition. “We are hopeful for a breakthrough this week,” said Akhtar, without divulging details on who the party will select to negotiate with the BJP.
BJP’s point man and party general secretary Ram Madhav is likely to start a structured dialogue with the PDP to iron out differences to form a government before the state slips into the governor’s rule on January 19. Sources said the back channels have succeeded to move forward positively towards a coalition government.