The ruling PDP’s chief Mehbooba Mufti is in “no hurry” to take over as the Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir. The state has been under Governor’s rule since January 8, a day after the demise of sitting Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed – who was running the state government in alliance with the BJP since March 1, 2015.
Amid speculations over the fate of state government, the PDP core group met on Sunday. There was clear no announcement on the government formation but the party, however, authorised Mehbooba Mufti to take a final call on government formation.
“Mehbooba made it clear at the meeting of the party’s core group that she is not in a hurry to form the government or become the chief minister of the state… The core group has authorised party president Mehbooba to take whatever decision on it (government formation),” PDP leader Naeem Akhtar told the eagerly waiting press after the marathon party meeting.
The senior party leader, though, clarified that PDP has not set any conditions for the government formation with BJP, he kept away from spelling any deadline for it.
“No conditions on part of the PDP,” he said adding “no time line” on forming the government.
The PDP, meanwhile, was all praises for Prime Minister Modi on the initiatives taken by the BJP-led central government to improve bitter ties with Pakistan, welcoming the Prime Minister’s Lahore visit last month.
“It was his (Sayeed’s) belief that India-Pakistan friendship is necessary for Kashmir as it has been a victim of hostilities between the two countries,” the senior PDP leader said adding, “The most important point in the vision of Mufti Sahib was reconciliation between India and Pakistan”.
Detailing further over the deliberations in the core group, he said Mehbooba told the party leaders she would take over as chief minister only after she is convinced that she can translate into reality her father’s vision for the state.
“The PDP president told the party meeting that she did not doubt the wisdom of her late father Mufti Mohammad Sayeed in joining hands with the BJP to form a government last year,” Akhtar said.
Meanwhile, the state BJP reiterated that it had no objection to PDP president Mehbooba Mufti taking over as the Jammu and Kashmir CM.
“We don’t know what their (PDP’s) stand (on Government formation) is, unless we get something official from them, we cannot say anything, but we are hopeful that this alliance will go ahead,” senior BJP leader and former deputy chief minister Nirmal Singh told the press in Jammu.
“We don’t have any objection as we have already given signals to it earlier,” Nirmal Singh replied when sought whether the BJP would accept Mehbooba Mufti as the chief minister of the coalition.
Ruling out speculations if the party is exploring other options in the event if PDP decides against continuing the ruling alliance with it, the former Dy CM said, “I think there should not be any reason for this, only they can tell us, we are hopeful that such a situation won’t arise”.
(With inputs from the PTI)