PDP accepts holding parleys with BJP for govt formation | india | Hindustan Times
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PDP accepts holding parleys with BJP for govt formation

The People's Democratic Party (PDP) on Saturday officially admitted of holding talks with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the government formation in Jammu and Kashmir.

india Updated: Jan 24, 2015 21:53 IST
Tarun Upadhyay

The People's Democratic Party (PDP) on Saturday officially admitted of holding talks with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the government formation in Jammu and Kashmir.

Laying down the conditions, it said it will not sell the peoples' mandate and will have the chief minister's post for full six-year.

"We are holding back channel talks with the BJP. It's like moving mountain to the Moses.

Both parties have their positions on certain issues, so we have to form a common ground," said PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed at a party meeting where Mehbooba Mufti was elected party president.

The PDP with 28 seats and the BJP having 25 seats have emerged two largest parties in the 87-member state assembly. The state is under the governor's rule since January 9.

"I don't want to be chief minister just for the sake of this post. But if the PDP and the BJP can do some welfare for the people, I am ready to hold hands. If we agree on mutual ground then structured dialogue can start," said Sayeed, a former union home minister and chief minister.

He disapproved the concept of the rotational CM, a demand put forth by the BJP. Sayeed was the CM for three years from 2002-05 under an agreement with the Congress.

"We can't change horse mid-stream. In 2005, then Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee had asked me to continue. Even, the Congress president Sonia Gandhi had backed me. But then, there was some intervention from somewhere," said Sayeed on the sequence leading to the parting of ways between the PDP and the Congress.

According to sources, the draft of the common minimum programme (CMP) between the PDP and the BJP has been agreed on and final announcement will be made after Sayeed holds meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Sayeed said Centre should revoke the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), which gives special powers to security forces in carrying out anti-terrorist operation, within a time frame and also hold talks with the separatists and Pakistan.

"AFSPA is a blot and shame on Indian democracy. Why should we carry it? It must go within time frame," he said.

Sayeed said the former home minister LK Advani had held talks with the separatists, suggesting that the Modi government should also follow the same.

"Modi made the right move to invite Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharief when he was to take oath. But then foreign secretary-level talks were cancelled. India should engage Pakistan though solution is not possible in a day.

"J&K is the only Muslim majority state in the country. But, why is it always disturbed? The mandate is an opportunity for PM Modi to understand peoples' aspirations and reach out to them," said Sayeed.