New Delhi: Signs of a thaw in ties between the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over formation of government in the northern state diminished today with the BJP making it amply clear that it will not accept any fresh conditions for forming government.
“We (BJP) refuse to accept any new condition (for government formation). Whatever expectations are there will possibly be fulfilled after formation of government in the state,” BJP general secretary Ram Madhav said today.
Some of the key demands of Mehbooba included removal of troops from key posts, sources said, a demand which the government does not appear to be willing to accommodate. However, PDP later said that the agenda of alliance sought to 'Include Srinagar and Jammu in the Smart Cities announced in this year’s budget.' PDP said it only sought a follow up on that.
"PDP has not set any new demands but only reiterated the implementation of 'Agenda of Alliance' as was earlier agreed with BJP. PDP is only asking BJP to walk the pre-agreed Agenda of Alliance on the existing status of J&K. PDP did not seek anything outside the pre agreed Agenda of Alliance from the BJP," a PDP leader said on Twitter.
Deadlock in the government appeared following the demise of Mehbooba’s father and former chief minister of the state Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on January 7 and subsequent imposition of Governor’s rule in the state.
Mehbooba Mufti has studiedly refused to reveal her hand. BJP and PDP inked a historic alliance, making it the first time that the BJP managed to make inroads into the restive state.
Rejecting the fears voiced by Mehbooba over development activities in the state, Madhav said, “The central government keeps development of all states in mind.”
“(There is) no progress on government formation. Stalemate continues,” he added.
Speculation of an end to the deadlock rose after Finance Minister Arun Jaitley saying on the floor of the Parliament that the government was willing to walk the extra mile for the state.
The numbers in the effectively 87-member Assembly are such that the Peoples Democratic Party’s options are seen to be many. With 27 MLAs, it could ditch the BJP’s 25 and form a government with the Congress’s 12 and a handful of Independents.