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Governor’s Rule no answer to Jammu and Kashmir’s problems: CPI-M’s Mohammed Tarigami

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New Delhi: Jammu and Kashmir needs a coalition of regional parties to keep out the BJP, the CPI-M’s lone legislator in the state, Mohammed Tarigami says, however adding that he doesn’t expect this to happen anytime soon.

Mohammed Yousuf Tarigami said his party always knew that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) coalition was “an alliance of opportunists”. “Their so-called ‘Agenda of Alliance’ or ‘common minimum programme’ was merely a façade to gain power,” Tarigami told reporters over the telephone amid continuing political impasse in the state.

“Now, after (Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed) Sayeed’s demise, they are finding it difficult to re-enforce the alliance as the PDP-BJP combine has no common ground to rule, their agenda is ambiguous,” said the long-time legislator from Kulgam in south Kashmir.

Ever since her father Mufti Sayeed died in early January, Jammu and Kashmir has been under Governor’s Rule because PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti has refused to form a government with the BJP.

Speculation has it that the PDP and the BJP marriage has run into rough weather, although no one says it in so many words. Opposition parties in the state, however, feel the two are indulging in a political drama.

The National Conference, the PDP’s main foe in the Kashmir Valley, wants fresh elections. Tarigama disagrees.

“There is no need for fresh elections and waste taxpayers’ money. The state leaders should set aside their minor differences and come together to form a strong government,” he said. “They should look at the larger picture of the defeating divisive BJP-RSS policy in Kashmir.”

The PDP and the BJP are the largest and second largest parties in splintered Jammu and Kashmir assembly. The National Conference and the Congress are in the third and fourth spots.

“If you look at it, they claimed to have come together to bridge the gap between the three regions of the state. They clearly failed to do that. Or else there wouldn’t be a problem today to re-enforce the alliance.”

Would the CPI-M, with just one member in the 87-seat assembly, support an alliance minus the BJP?

“Yes, but as of now no such thing seems likely to happen,” he said.

“However, if the PDP decides to sever ties with BJP, regional parties can and definitely should come together for the greater good and form a secular and strong government in the state.”

He said the Communist Party of India-Marxist would any day support a government that respects people’s mandate and does not hurt the sentiments of any community.

Tarigami said Governor’s Rule was no answer to Jammu and Kashmir’s problems. “Governors Rule means Centre’s rule, in other words BJP’s rule.”

“The state has witnessed an unprecedented rise in incidents of communally driven violence (with the BJP pulling the strings). Jammu and Kashmir has no future with the BJP (in power).

“Babus cannot address the immediate concerns of the people. They (people) feel disconnected from the state machinery now,” the veteran politician added.

Tarigami argued that he was sure the PDP and the BJP would finally shake hands to again rule the country’s only Muslim-majority state.

“It won’t be surprising for me that the PDP-BJP will form a government. These two parties have always played with people’s sentiments. Their only aim is to gain power at any cost.”

“I’m certain they will work out their so-called differences in the coming days to form a new government.” (Shamshad Ali, IANS)(Image Courtesy: The Hindu)

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BJP Hopeful of Getting its “First Chief Minister” in Jammu and Kashmir

Meanwhile, the BJP which shared power in the state with the PDP for three years from 2015 to 2018, did not get the top post

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BJP, Chief Minister, Jammu and Kashmir
Jammu and Kashmir has seen several Chief Ministers from Congress, National Conference and the People's Democratic Party (PDP). Flickr

The BJP is hopeful of getting its “first Chief Minister” in Jammu and Kashmir following the abrogation of Article 370 from the state two months ago, and the planned delimitation of the Assembly constituencies.

In an interview to IANS, Jammu and Kashmir Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Ravinder Raina said, “Jammu and Kashmir is a unit. And as President of BJP here, I am confident that we will have a BJP Chief Minister in Jammu and Kashmir very soon.”

Jammu and Kashmir has seen several Chief Ministers from Congress, National Conference and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

Meanwhile, the BJP which shared power in the state with the PDP for three years from 2015 to 2018, did not get the top post and had to accept the post of Deputy Chief Minister.

BJP, Chief Minister, Jammu and Kashmir
In an interview to IANS, Jammu and Kashmir Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Ravinder Raina said, Jammu and Kashmir is a unit. Flickr

When asked about the planned delimitation of constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir, Raina said, “The Election Commission will take a final call on the delimitation of the Assembly constituencies here.”

Raina said the poll panel will constitute a commission, which will be headed by either a retired Supreme Court or High Court judge.

The BJP leader pointed out that the commission which will be constituted for the delimitation process will follow all the standard prodecures.

The government abrogated Article 370 of the Constitution from Jammu and Kashmir on August 5 and also bifurcated the state into two union territories.

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Following the revocation of Article 370, the government has enforced a massive clampdown on communication and internet services in the state and deployed heavy security presence.

To a question over the clampdown for 60 days in the state, the state BJP chief said, “Soon after the abrogation of Article 370 the mobile connectivity and internet facility was suspended here.

“And now you are witnessing that the mobile connectivity and Wi-fi services are given a free hand and people are using those facilities here,” Raina said pointing towards the Wi-fi hotspots and connections provided to the citizens in Jammu.

Pointing towards the Kashmir valley, where only landlines connections and BSNL mobile networks are operating, he said, “In Kashmir valley too, the communication systems whether it is landline connections or BSNL mobile numbers are being operated and are given access.”

BJP, Chief Minister, Jammu and Kashmir
And as President of BJP here, I am confident that we will have a BJP Chief Minister in Jammu and Kashmir very soon. Pixabay

“But there are still apprehensions that Pakistani agents may use the internet facilities to defame and to create mess and try to instigate the youth of the country,” he said on the internet suspension in Srinagar and other districts in the Kashmir valley.

Raina further said that Pakistani elements can instigate the youth and spread venom in the society and that is why preventive measures have been taken. “But soon you shall find all internet facilities will be opened and will be given free access,” he said.

India has on several occasions accused Pakistan of sponsoring terror and allowing its land to be used for terror activities. In recent days, the Indian Army and security forces have foiled terrorists’ attempts to enter Indian territory from the Pakistan side.

On India’s semi-high speed and feature-rich Vande Bharat Express arriving in Jammu from Delhi, he said, “We are thankful to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and Railway Minister Piyush Goyal for providing the best train that is Vande Bharat Express to Jammu and Kashmir after the revocation of Article 370.

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He said “Vande Bharat Express will provide all sorts of relief to passengers that we have seen at the overcrowded railway stations of Jammu Tawi, Katra and Udhampur. It is a big gift for the people of Kashmir,” Raina added. (IANS)