Coalition Trouble? PDP to “Review” Alliance with BJP
So what now?
SRINAGAR: Spelling trouble in the coalition, the Peoples Democratic Party will first "review" the alliance agenda it had with the Bharatiya Janata Party before making any move to form the government in Jammu and Kashmir.
After the official mourning ended on Wednesday, senior PDP leader Naeem Akhtar, who was the education minister in the coalition government, said his party will "review" the progress made on the 'Agenda of the Alliance' before restitching the alliance with the BJP.
“Mufti Sahab had a vision to make Jammu and Kashmir an abode of peace. Due to his death, his dreams are yet to be realised. Under the leadership of Mehboobaji, we will need to review how much we have succeeded in fulfilling Mufti saheb’s vision,” Akhtar said in an interview with Shaharbeen, a local current affairs program run by the state broadcaster.
Akhtar, a close aide of Muftis and the official spokesperson of the previous PDP-BJP coalition government, said his party didn't form the government with BJP for power, “Our aim is not power but to fulfil the expectations of people of Jammu and Kashmir. Today, our party has the same stand,” he said.
The PDP-BJP alliance agenda talked about, among many other issues, protecting the special status of the state, bringing "all stakeholders" on board for final resolution of Kashmir issue and wresting back the control of two key power projects from the state-owned NHPC.
“Our governance agenda was making smart cities, bringing back power projects and other development projects. We will analyse whether we can work smoothly on the agenda. We will assess whether our Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, who has a massive mandate of the country, has taken any decision on it,” Akhtar said, noting that the death of Sayeed has cast shadow on the future on the alliance and the implementation of the governance agenda.
A young PDP legislator, who didn't want to be named, said the manner in which the BJP let loose its shady machinery to target the special status and damage what it claims to protect in the alliance agenda, has upset the party leadership.
"Their treatment of the state, delaying the flood package, for example, for over a year, and the political blunders committed in the aftermath of Sayeed's death, have sparked murmurs of caution in the party about continuing the alliance," he said.
The Article 35 (A), which grants property and employment rights solely for the state subjects, is being challenged in the Supreme Court by a right-wing backed think-tank while the BJP-led Centre has also clearly refused to return the power projects, saying it will trigger similar demands from other states.
Akhtar whose party has 28 seats in the state legislature said no party meeting has been convened so far to discuss the government formation and no one has met the PDP president on the issue. “No formal meeting has been held yet under the leadership of Mehbooba Mufti,” he said.