Historical Opportunity For Reconciliation: BJP On New Jammu & Kashmir Government

26 February 2015

New Delhi: Set to form government in Jammu & Kashmir with PDP, BJP on Thursday said it could be a 'historical opportunity' to bring about larger reconciliation in the state in the national interest. Senior BJP leader and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told Rajya Sabha that people in the state have voted 'overwhelmingly' for BJP in Jammu and for PDP in the Valley. 'It may be a historical opportunity to bring about larger reconciliation in Jammu & Kashmir in larger national interest,' he said while intervening in the debate on Motion of Thanks on the President's Address. 'There is a peculiar situation there for us but there is no lack of honesty in our stand. It is our transparency and honesty that Hurriyat is ready to talk to us and not to you,' he told senior Congress leader from the state and Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad. The remarks come at a time when PDP and BJP have ironed out their differences and reached a consensus on a Common Minimum Programme (CMP) that will form the basis of their unique coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir to be sworn-in at 11 AM on Sunday next. PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, who is tipped to be the Chief Minister, will be meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi here tomorrow. Jaitley targeted Azad for his remarks that BJP was a red-rag there, saying it amounted to showing disrespect to wisdom of people of the state who had voted for the party. 'Your definition of red rag changes...in 1953 it was Sheikh Saheb and later National Congress,' he told the Congress leader. He asked Azad to ponder upon what his party did there in the last five decades and added 'all of us has great attachment' to the state. Jaitley said it has been no secret as to how in the past Congress party has been winning in J&K and questioned 'what did you do for the state.' Taking a dig at Congress, he said it had shown 'flexibility' by changing allies just for the sake of being in power.