New Delhi, June 19: In a major development this afternoon, the BJP pulled out of the alliance with the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Jammu and Kashmir. Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has already submitted her resignation to the state Governor. In its press conference, national general secretary of BJP, Ram Madhav, said, “Keeping in mind the larger interest of India’s security and integrity, the fact is that J&K is an integral part of India, in order to bring control over the situation prevailing in the state we have decided that the reigns of power in the state be handed over to the Governor.” (Catch live updates on PDP-BJP spilt here)
For over a year now, the allies have had a tumultuous relationship, widely reported in the media, over mob violence and rising militancy. One major issue was each side’s approach towards stone-pelters and mob violence. The BJP had been asking Mufti to go tough against stone-pelters.
Speaking on the major fallout, PDP Spokesperson, Rafi Ahmad Mir, said, “We tried our best to run the government with BJP. This had to happen. This is a surprise to us because we did not have any indication about their decision.”
Senior PDP leader, Naeem Akhtar, said that Mehbooba Mufti has submitted her resignation as J&K CM to the Governor.
Congress leader, Ghulam Nabi Azad, said, “Whatever has happened is good. People of J&K will get some relief. They (BJP) ruined Kashmir & have now pulled out, the maximum number of civilian & army men died during these 3 years. That question does not arise (on forming an alliance with PDP).”
After meeting with the governor, National Conference leader, Omar Abdullah, said that their party will not back the PDP to form a government in the state saying that it didn’t have the mandate in 2014.
“After running & ruining J&K for 3.4 years the self-claimed nationalist & opportunist BJP suddenly realised they are not capable of controlling terrorism, violence & its promises so they run away from key roles & responsibilities. The height of Opportunism! Both in J&K and Bihar” tweeted Tejashwi Yadav.
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal also hit out at the politics being played by the BJP. “Didn’t BJP tell us that demonetisation had broken the back of terrorism in Kashmir? Then what happened?” he tweeted.
Meanwhile, meeting of Home Minister, National Security Advisor, Home Secretary and Joint Secretary of Jammu And Kashmir and other officers is also underway at Home Minister’s residence in Delhi.
Moreover, the general perception in Kashmir was that Mufti had been reduced to a titular head by the Modi government. “It was an incompatible partnership between two antagonistic parties, to begin with. The BJP is the political arm of the RSS, a Hindu right-wing organization that has aspirations of turning secular India into a Hindu nation,” a disgruntled PDP leader had said to the daily.
The PDP had been harping on talks with separatists and Pakistan. On multiple occasions, Mufti had stressed on the need for talks to resolve the issues. So the PDP attributed the unrest in Kashmir to the BJP’s decision to discontinue political engagement with separatists and Pakistan. The relations hit a new low when the BJP general secretary Ram Madhav defended the Army’s decision to tie a stone-pelter to an armoured vehicle to rescue soldiers. The two parties had formed a coalition government with Mufti as the Chief Minister in 2015 after elections led to a hung assembly but the rift was all too obvious.