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Blamegame between BJP and PDP over J&K fiasco, Oppn terms it opportunistic politics

While the BJP blamed the PDP for failing to control the security situation in the Valley, the PDP said a ‘muscular security policy’ won’t work in the state and reconciliation is the key.

india Updated: Jun 19, 2018 22:21 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India, New Delhi
mehbooba mufti resigned,jammu and kashmir,J&K Mehbooba resigns
PDP chief and Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti maintained that Jammu and Kashmir was not an enemy territory as being perceived by some.(Waseem Andrabi/ HT Photo)

The BJP’s withdrawal from the PDP-led government in Jammu and Kashmir sparked off a war of words between the erstwhile allies. While the BJP blamed the PDP for failing to control the deteriorating law and order situation in the Valley, citing it as the reason for pullout, the PDP said a ‘muscular security policy’ won’t work in the state and reconciliation is the key. The Opposition has meanwhile called it opportunistic politics by both the PDP and BJP.

The PDP-BJP alliance in Jammu and Kashmir was described by late PDP founder Mufti Mohammed Sayeed in 2015 as a meeting of the ‘north pole and south pole’, but three years down the line, things have taken a completely different turn.

“Keeping in mind that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and in order to control the prevailing situation in the state, we have decided that it is time the reins of power in the state be handed over to the governor,” BJP general secretary Ram Madhav told a hurriedly called press conference in New Delhi. He said continuing in the alliance with the PDP had become “untenable”.

PDP chief and Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti maintained that Jammu and Kashmir was not an enemy territory as being perceived by some. “We had always said a muscular security policy will not work in J&K, reconciliation is the key,” she told reporters after an hour-long meeting with her ministers and party workers at her residence in Srinagar.

“We believe there is no alternative to the PDP’s healing touch agenda under which talks should be held with Pakistan, people of Jammu and Kashmir, more and more routes (across the Line of Control) should be opened,” she added.

“The opportunistic BJP-PDP alliance has set fire to Jammu and Kashmir; the damage will continue under President’s rule,” Congress president Rahul Gandhi tweeted.

Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said the BJP had committed a “Himalayan blunder” by forming a government with the PDP. He said the BJP, a national party, should not have allied with PDP, a regional player.

“Regional parties should have been allowed to form an alliance among themselves,” he told reporters in Delhi.

The alliance has devastated the state, be it economically or socially, and has left Jammu and Kashmir in a state of “ruins”, he said.

The Left parties said the coming together of the BJP and PDP after the 2014 assembly polls was itself “opportunistic”. “Such coalition should not have happened. These two parties have no similarities. They coming together was an opportunistic move to be in power,” CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury said.

The BJP unit in Jammu and Kashmir said the decision of the BJP to pull out of the government was a “well thought” decision. “It is a well thought decision in the given circumstances as continuation of the alliance anymore would have hurt national interest,” chief spokesperson of J&K BJP, Sunil Sethi, told reporters in Jammu.

“It was highly unfortunate that our partner was always trying to tie over hands from taking strong measures against enemies of the nation.”

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal slammed the BJP for pulling out of its alliance with the PDP and alleged that the party had “ruined” the state.

National Conference working president Omar Abdullah said while he was not surprised by the BJP’s decision, its timing took him by surprise.

“Clearly, over the last month or a month-an-a-half, we have seen a marked and very significant deterioration in the situation in the state and that perhaps is one of the reasons, but beyond that I do not want to speculate as to what was the reason for the BJP,” the NC leader told reporters in Srinagar after meeting Governor NN Vohra.

First Published: Jun 19, 2018 19:31 IST