Suspense deepens as Mufti family leaves CM bungalow

RSTV Bureau
Photo – PTI

Photo – PTI

The question of government formation in Jammu and Kashmir is still in the ambit of deep suspense. As the state continues under Governor’s rule after the demise of sitting Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on January 7, the PDP-BJP coalition, which hitherto ruled the state, are yet to strike any headway.

In a significant development, a meeting of PDP’s senior party workers and zonal heads in Jammu, scheduled to be held on February 3, has been postponed indefinitely.

Mehbooba Mufti, who took over the reins of PDP, was slated to address the meeting. However, there is no change in the meeting scheduled to be held in Srinagar on Sunday.

“The meeting in Srinagar will be held as per schedule on Janaury 31 but the Jammu sitting has been postponed for the time being,” sources in the PDP told the news agency adding that no fresh date has been finalised for Jammu meet.

Interestingly, prime agenda of the meeting was to get a feedback from the grass root levels of the PDP workers and party office bearers on government formation in the state.

Mehbooba Mufti, whose coronation as the Chief Minister was believed to be certain, told her party workers earlier last week that she is “no hurry” to be the Chief Minister of the state. That statement has only stoked speculations over the future of PDP-BJP alliance, which was dubbed as ‘historic’ after the assembly polls threw scattered results.

In another move, which will only add to the speculations, Mufti Sayeed’s family vacated the official Chief Minister’s bungalow in Jammu, the winter capital of the state.

According to the party sources, Begum Gulshan, Mufti Sayeed’s wife and mother of Mehbooba Mufti, visited the bungalow at Wazarat Road in Jammu city on January 18 to take away the family belongings.

“The personal belongings of Mufti Mohammad Sayeed were taken out of the Chief Minister’s official residence at Jammu by his family to maintain the highest standards of dignified political conduct practiced by late Sayeed,” senior PDP leader Naeem Akhtar told the press.

The PDP leader, however, stressed that too much shouldn’t be read into this move.

“There is nothing political about it. This is a normal practice…Mufti Sahab had always batted for this,” Akhtar said, adding “It is the designated house of the Chief Minister. How can someone who is not a Chief Minister stay there?”

According to rules, official accommodation can be retained for one month after a person ceases to be the Chief Minister but the family did not wait even for that time limit.

(With inputs from the PTI)