PDP, BJP Finalize Alliance, Govt By Feb 7

28 January 2015
Kashmir Observer

Srinagar: Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have virtually agreed on the broad contours of having an alliance and top BJP leader and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said on Wednesday that a 'democratic government' will be in place in the state soon. Sources said PDP and BJP, which have been engaged in informal talks since declaration of results on December 23, have made a headway in government formation talks and new government will be in place by February 7. 'The two parties have almost finalized the alliance talks to form government in the State,' they said adding the most contentious issues like BJP's demand for revocation Article 370 and PDP's call for revocation of Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) will not be part of the Common Minimum Programme (CMP). They said the contentious issues will continue to remain on the agenda of the parties. 'However, less contentious issues may be incorporated in CMP'. Likewise the question of resettlement of West Pakistan refugees, self-rule and going soft on separatists too have been settled. Sources said the development will be the main thrust and focus of the PDP-BJP coalition government. PDP with 28 seats emerged as single largest party in 87-member J&K Assembly and BJP close second with 25 seats. National Conference and Congress got 15 and 12 seats respectively while smaller parties and independents won seven seats. Sources said PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed will be chief minister for full six year term in the State. Besides having a Deputy Chief Ministership, BJP will also walk away with important portfolios including a full-fledged cabinet minister for Home. PDP chief spokesperson Naeem Akhtar said the talks with BJP are going on right direction. He said the coalition government between the two parties will be formed on the basis of CMP. 'The CMP has not yet been finalized. The moment it is finalized, the announcement about alliance would be made,' he said. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, without disclosing the details about the parleys, said 'we are in talks' and refused to divulge the party with which BJP was holding a dialogue on government-formation saying 'yeh andar ki baat hai (it's secret)'. He assured that a 'democratic government' will be in place soon.