On way out: ‘Jammu and Kashmir not enemy territory, don’t try muscular policy’

Published: June 20, 2018 12:30 AM

Soon after submitting her resignation as chief minister following the BJP’s pullout from the ruling alliance, PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti ruled out the option of exploring “any other alliance”, and warned that a “muscular policy” will not succeed in J&K, which is “not enemy territory”.

Mehbooba Mufti (Reuters)

Soon after submitting her resignation as chief minister following the BJP’s pullout from the ruling alliance, PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti ruled out the option of exploring “any other alliance”, and warned that a “muscular policy” will not succeed in J&K, which is “not enemy territory”. Addressing a press conference Tuesday after faxing her resignation to J&K Governor Vohra, Mufti said, “Jammu and Kashmir is not an enemy territory. This is the territory of the people of Jammu and Kashmir…. We have always believed that a muscular policy will not work… the muscular policy will not succeed here.”

Mufti refrained from criticising the BJP for pulling the plug on her government and said that the PDP opted for this alliance with some “bigger objectives” in mind. “We didn’t stitch this alliance (with BJP) for power. If we had done it for power, then Omar (Abdullah) sahib and Congress were ready to support us. This (alliance) had bigger objectives. What were those big objectives? The big objective was unilateral ceasefire, the big objective was offer of dialogue, the big objective was the Prime Minister’s visit to Pakistan, the big objective was the withdrawal of FIRs against 11,000 youth,” she said. “Whatever our agenda was, we have fulfilled that,” said the PDP leader.

Listing the achievements of her government, she said that it “successfully protected” the state’s special status, got a unilateral ceasefire announced and ensured an offer for dialogue from the Union Home Minister. “We believe that the agenda of PDP in Jammu and Kashmir — that talks should happen with Pakistan, that talks should also happen with people here — there could be no policy other than this,” she said.

“The alliance of PDP and BJP, we did it after enough thought, even though it was against the mood of people. With a larger vision Mufti (Mohammad Sayeed) sahib thought that it (BJP) is a big party and the Prime Minister has got a huge mandate, he joined hands with the big party to get people out of the trouble. It took us several months to create an understanding, to formulate an agenda of alliance, which had the basic aim to have reconciliation and dialogue,” Mufti said.

Earlier, Mufti was at the civil secretariat in Srinagar when she was informed about the BJP’s press conference in Delhi where the pullout was announced. She then moved to her Gupkar residence for a brief meeting with the senior party leaders and ministers.

Bashaarat Masood

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