Mehbooba Mufti Resigns As BJP Exits Jammu and Kashmir Alliance: 10 Facts
The BJP-PDP coalition flat-lined just days after the central government’s decision to resume anti-terror operations in Jammu and Kashmir.
NEW DELHI: The signs were there for months, but Jammu and Kashmir’s ruling coalition crashed today as the BJP yanked support from Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti’s People’s Democratic Party (PDP), leaving the state facing Governor’s Rule. “It had become untenable to continue with the PDP government in Kashmir,” said senior BJP leader Ram Madhav, referring to reasons like deteriorating security and “discrimination” in parts of the state like Jammu and Ladakh. Mehbooba Mufti resigned not long after.
Here are the top 10 updates on the BJP-PDP alliance crash:
- The PDP-BJP coalition, which was wobbly from the start, flat-lined just days after the central government decided not to extend the Ramzan ceasefire on anti-terror operations. The peace initiative was Mehbooba Mufti’s idea.
- The rift between the parties widened after the rape of an eight-year-old in Kathua. State BJP leaders were seen to support the men accused of kidnapping, gang-raping and killing the child from a Muslim tribal community. Two BJP lawmakers even participated in a rally to demand justice for the arrested men, all Hindus.
- “Taking feedback from all institutions, the centre and the party was of the view that it is time the BJP withdrew from state government,” Ram Madhav said.
- Defending the decision to pull out support two years before time, the BJP leader said: “Fundamental rights of citizens including right to life and free speech are in danger.”
- A day before Eid, senior journalist Shujaat Bukhari was shot dead along with two security guards in Srinagar. The same day, a soldier was kidnapped on his way home for Eid and killed.
- “After the killing of Shujaat, there was no question of not continuing anti-terror operations,” said Ram Madhav. In a series of tweets on Sunday, Union home minister Rajnath Singh announced that security forces had been directed to resume operations, indicating that the Ramzan ceasefire would not be extended.
- The BJP has 25 lawmakers and the PDP has 28 in the 89-member state assembly, both far short of the majority mark of 45.
- The Congress, which has 12 members, said there is no question of an alliance with the PDP.
- The other major party in the state is the National Conference, with 15 seats. Its chief and former chief minister Omar Abdullah posted on Twitter: “And so it has come to pass…”
- Since the two parties came to power in 2015, there had been a series of disputes – over PDP’s promises of talks with separatists, the proposal to remove AFSPA or the Armed Forces’ Special Powers Act that gives sweeping powers to the army in insurgency-hit areas, and the rollout of the government’s flagship Goods and Services Tax.