New Delhi :
The PDP-BJP alliance in Jammu and Kashmir is likely to see another sting as both the parties have cleared the decks to give the state government another chance in the state.
PDP Chief Mehbooba Mufti met Prime Minister Narendra Modi for over 15-minutes and said the meeting was positive and both the parties re satisfied with each other.
The meeting took place a day after Mehbooba arrived here barely three days after she had returned to the Kashmir Valley after her talks with BJP President Amit Shah had hit a road block.
After hardening of her stand following her father Mufti Mohammed Sayeed’s demise on January seven this year, the PDP Chief is understood to climbed down on her demands for assurances like handing over of power projects to the state, enhancing relief to flood victims and vacation of land by the army. She, however, remained non-committal on these issues.
“We are seeing a stalemate for last two to three months over government formation in the state but today I am satisfied. I am very satisfied,” she said and announced that the party’s future course of action would be announced at the PDP legislature party meeting this Thursday.
To a question whether the stalemate has ended, she said, “When you meet the Prime Minister of the country, naturally the solution to the problems faced by the people of Jammu and Kashmir is more clear”.
Asked about the Modi-Mehbooba meeting, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said at a BJP briefing it was “constructive and good”.
A BJP source said the alliance government in the state could be in place in the next one week.
Mehbooba will be flying back to Srinagar tomorrow where she will brief her party legislators on Thursday. “I had been authorised by the party MLAs to take a decision. I have convened a meeting on Thursday and after that we will announce the future course of action.”
On government formation in the state, she said, “As I said I will talk to my MLAs because that is the forum. This is not the place. There is a particular place to make such announcements. I will go back to Srinagar and take the next step.”
Sources in the PDP said that after the legislative party meeting, the two sides would meet for government formation and giving final touches to the cabinet which will be headed by Mehbooba, the first woman Chief Minister of the state.
Last Thursday, BJP’s chief interlocutor Ram Madhav had announced that his party would not be accepting any fresh demands from its erstwhile ally PDP and put the ball in their court while stressing that his party would respect the ‘Agenda of Alliance’ document.
Today’s meeting was eyed with suspicion by opposition National Conference and Congress who asked the PDP leadership to come clean on the deal with BJP. (MORE) PTI SKL KR GSN GSN 03221813 “If she had to surrender herself in this fashion, why were the people of Jammu and Kashmir deprived of an elected government for last three months,” he said.
Another spokesperson of the National Conference Sarah Hayat Shah tweeted “so much drama and suddenly Mehbooba says the meeting with the PM was very positive. What about the CBMs, AFSPA, the power projects?”
State Congress Chief G A Mir termed the demand for more Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) by PDP ahead of government formation as a drama and said Mehbooba owes an explanation to the people of the state as to why she was instrumental in imposition of two-and-a-half month Governor’s rule in the state.
“It was all drama enacted by PDP over the issue of CBM as a condition before BJP to be taken ahead of government formation. It was aimed to test waters in Kashmir Valley where they have lost their ground,” he said.
Mehbooba came to Delhi yesterday after PDP made it clear to BJP that there was some miscommunication and no fresh demands had been raised by the party for stitching an alliance.
This is her second visit to the national capital in five days after her talks with BJP President Amit Shah on Thursday failed to make any headway triggering speculation that the two parties could be making renewed efforts to reach out to each other in a bid to break the prolonged impasse.
The fresh efforts from PDP, which has 27 MLAs in the 87-member state Assembly, come in the backdrop of repeated assertions made by BJP that it was committed to implementation of Agenda of Alliance arrived at by late Mufti Mohammed Sayeed.
The talks with BJP, which has 25 MLAs, had hit a roadblock last week when the party’s interlocutor Ram Madhav made it clear that no fresh demands would be entertained from PDP and that they had to decide whether they want to form a government based on the Agenda of Alliance document.
PDP and BJP had formed an alliance on March one, last year with Sayeed as the Chief Minister. Both the sides had formed an Agenda of Alliance which sought to address internal and external dimension of the state.
PDP had toughened its stance after Sayeed’s demise by seeking concrete plans for the state’s development, including handing over of power projects to the state and vacation of land by the army before the coalition could be revived.
Governor’s rule was imposed in J-K on January 8 after Mehbooba decided against taking over the reins after her father’s death.