End of road: BJP pulls out of Mehbooba-led govt in Jammu and Kashmir
In a dramatic move the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Tuesday pulled out of the Mehbooba Mufti-led Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) government, pushing the state towards Governor’s rule. Blaming alliance partner Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for its inability to handle the deteriorating security scenario in the state, the BJP said it had become “untenable” for it to continue with the alliance formed in 2015.
Announcing the pullout in the national capital, BJP General Secretary Ram Madhav held the PDP entirely responsible for the breaking of the alliance and said the decision was unanimous and taken after due consolation with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party chief Shah.
“We discussed the situation in (J&K) at different levels, with the home ministry, with agencies after taking necessary inputs. After consulting the Prime Minister and Amit Shah, we have decided that it is not possible for the BJP to continue with the alliance. It has become untenable for the BJP to continue the alliance government in J&K,” Madhav told the media.
Madhav said the PDP was unsuccessful in restoring peace in the Valley and encouraging fast paced development in Jammu and Ladakh regions – the twin agenda with which the BJP-PDP alliance was formed.
“In the last three years, the BJP as part of the government performed its function well but that cannot be said for the other side.
“The condition that is prevailing is worrisome. Terrorism and violence in the valley has increased, there is rapid radicalisation and the fundamental rights of the citizens are in danger. We have all seen how veteran journalist Shujaat Bhukhari was killed in broad daylight. His chilling murder is an evidence of the situation prevailing there,” he said.
While praising the Modi-led Union government for assisting the state government in every possible way, the BJP said the Mehbooba-led PDP was “not successful” in handling the situation which eventually triggered the BJP’s pull out.
“They (PDP) were not fully successful in handling the situation. We don’t question their determination but the reality is that the state government was unsuccessful in discharging its responsibility of improving the situation particularly in the Kashmir Valley,” Madhav said.
He accused the PDP of discriminating the Jammu and Ladakh regions in terms of development work.
“In Jammu and Ladakh, our ministers had to face hindrances in ushering in development. All the ministry that we had, we tried to do our best but we are not alone in the government. The people of Jammu and Ladakh feel they are being discriminated,” he claimed.
Claiming the pull out decision was in taken for the sake of the country’s integrity and security, the BJP recommended the governor’s rule in the state.
“Keeping in view the country's security and sovereignty and keeping in mind that J&K is an integral part of India, its time the reins of power in the state be handed to the governor and the bring the situation under control,” Madhav said.
He also said the suspension of the armed operations in the Kashmir Valley during Ramzan failed to evoke any response either from the terrorists or separatists.
“We had taken the initiative of ceasefire during Ramzan and expected this will attract a better response from terrorists and separatists. Suspension of operation wasnot a compulsion for us, it was taken from a position of strength but it failed to attract response from them. That is why the home ministry has decided to not to continue with the ceasefire,” he said.
He also defended the decision to enter the unlikely alliance with the PDP in 2014.
“The only possible result that time was governor’s president’s rule if we had not formed the alliance. It was fractured mandate but at the same time it was duty to honour the people’s mandate,” he said adding that the pull out decision was not guided by any fear of losing ground to the PDP.