January 2016 News
BJP Puts Ball In PDP Court Over Alliance For J&K Govt11 January 2016
Times of India
New Delhi: Amid suspense over government formation in Jammu and Kashmir, BJP on Monday put the ball in PDP's court saying the Mehbooba Mufti-led party has to take the decision and made it clear that it wanted the existing power-sharing arrangement between the two parties to continue. BJP general secretary Ram Madhav, who has been handling the Jammu and Kashmir brief for the party, also rejected as 'mere speculation' reports that both parties had put up fresh conditions and asserted that no political discussion had started between them as Mehbooba was in deep mourning following her father Mufti Mohammad Sayeed's death last week. Asked about the uncertainty, he said, 'PDP can answer this question. They have to think about the process they have to complete from their side. It is for PDP to take the first call from their side. They have to decide about their leader and come forward. I hope they take a decision soon so that this kind of uncertainty ends.' Asked if BJP expected a smooth takeover by a new PDP-BJP government, he said, 'I am tempted to say it will be smooth. We will like to know what they are thinking. PDP has to be forthcoming.' Sayeed had a 'grand vision' for J&K's development which resulted in the alliance between the two parties, Madhav told reporters. 'We had an alliance eight months ago with the grand vision of the state's development. We (BJP) are in favour of continuing that arrangement for the larger benefit of the state. It has been in the interest of the state and we want this to continue,' he said, reiterating that BJP was committed to the laboriously worked out common minimum programme by both sides. Asked about Congress chief Sonia Gandhi's meeting with Mehbooba, which fuelled political speculation, Madhav said, 'What transpired (between them) I do not know but I am tempted to believe that it was to express condolence.'