New Delhi, July 11: In what seems to be an attempt by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to form a government in Jammu and Kashmir, senior party leaders from the state Ravinder Raina and Nirmal Singh on Wednesday met party-in-charge for the state Ram Madhav to discuss the current political situation in the state.
Raina is the chief of the BJP’s Jammu and Kashmir unit and Nirmal Singh was the deputy Chief Minister in the previous PDP-BJP coalition government in the state headed by Mehbooba Mufti.
According to reports, the meeting is being held to discuss the possibilities of forming a government in the state. It has also been reported that Nirmal Singh will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi later today.
The development comes amid reports of several rebel PDP leaders planning to join BJP to form a government in the state that will not include Mehbooba Mufti and her close confidantes.
Three of the PDP MLAs raised banner of revolt against Mufti, blaming her for the collapse of the coalition government. Influential Shia leader and former minister Imran Ansari called Mufti “incompetent” and accused her of nepotism. He said that the People’s Democratic Party has become “Family Democratic Party”.
Hinting at quitting the party, Imran said, “There is no point for us to continue in this party”. The former minister added that he was not adverse to joining any other party which was keen to work for betterment of Jammu and Kashmir and end the “family rule”.
Speaking to News 18, former deputy CM Kavinder Gupta Gupta didn’t rule out that the BJP was willing to form a new government. He, however, rubbished reports of the saffron party poaching rebel PDP MLAs. “The party is not in touch with any of PDP MLAs. If we had to indulge in horse-trading, why would we have quit the government?” he asked.
On June 19, the BJP pulled the rug from the under the feet of Mehbooba Mufti, announcing its withdrawal from the coalition government with PDP in the state.
“We have taken a decision, it is untenable for BJP to continue in alliance with PDP in Jammu & Kashmir, hence we are withdrawing… in order to bring control over the situation prevailing in the state we have decided that the reins of power in the state be handed over to the Governor,” senior BJP leader Ram Madhav announced.
Soon after the announcement, Mehbooba Mufti submitted her resignation as J&K CM to Governor NN Vohra, who then took over the reins of the state.