While ruling the state with PDP in the coalition government, the BJP must also remember it’s promises made to the people regarding development, jobs, infrastructure, and most importantly to fight discrimination against this region. The BJP leadership should also learn from the vociferous manner in which Kashmiri political parties, and leaders worry about the interests of the valley irrespective of the fact whether these have merit or not. The people in Kashmir have got true representatives because their MLAs and MPs fight for healing touch for Valley, more funds and infra in Kashmir, more jobs in Kashmir, and also about the religious and ethnic character of the state. In comparison the leadership of the BJP despite having adequate number of MLAs in the assembly, and ministers in cabinet is being seen as week, and confused by the people of Jammu.
The general feeling is that PDP, and the Kashmiri leadership has been like the past allowed to snatch the momentum, and this has led to a sense of loss among the people in Jammu region. They had voted en bloc for the party to ensure that the respect and dignity of the Duggar was restored to some extent but this does not seem to be happening. The party leadership has not been able to challenge the opposition in the state assembly, and the NC, and Congress have been allowed to take potshots on the policies of the government. No doubt coalition demands sacrifice but it does not mean stooping to the alliance partner, and get along on issues which were seen anti- Indian and anti-national few days back. The party may have stepped back on Article 370, and other issues but it should not let the PDP drive the agenda of the governance all alone.
The people in Jammu who voted for the party are worried about the way some important institutions have been allotted to Kashmir Valley despite the fact that there is a BJP government in Delhi which needs to support it’s voters in Jammu. The decision to set up AIIMS in Kashmir, and setting up two Territorial Army units in Valley has particularly rankled the people in Jammu province. They argue that unemployment in Jammu is also high, and region is known to be a major recruitment center for the Indian army. As per data, the rate of unemployment in Jammu region is almost 60 per cent whereas the same in Kashmir is almost the half. The general perception in the Dogra region is that there needs to be a massive course correction to be made by the BJP, and if the party has some cards under it’s sleeves than it should open them by getting some major benefits for Jammu region. Even more than that it is important to end the perception that BJP is a junior partner in state government, and it can be taken for granted by the PDP in government, and by the Congress, and NC in opposition.