The high level structured dialogue between the BJP, and PDP to form the Common Minimum Programme, and to iron out crucial differences seems to have begun on Sunday, and it is most likely that the state will witness a coalition government in the coming week. A blueprint to manage the controversial issues, and challenges has already been worked out at the highest level between the two parties. Sources tell that negotiations are still on between the two sides to ensure a foolproof agreement takes place with no ambiguity should be left so that problems do not emerge later.
As per highly placed sources, PDP patron Mufti Mohd Sayeed will be the Chief Minister of the state for next six years, while BJP will get a Deputy CM, and senior BJP leader Dr Nirmal Singh is likely to be sworn in for this post unless there is a last minute change in strategy. The two important issues which remain unresolved are the revocation of Armed Forces Special Powers Act on which PDP is adamant, and the other is settlement of West Pakistan refugees which is a core issue for the saffron party. While the abrogation of Article 370, and Delimitation of seats in the state has been put on the hold by BJP, the PDP on it’s part has agreed not to insist on restoration of talks with Pakistan.
Earlier, the BJP had proposed that the CM’s post should rotate between the two parties, and in lieu of this PDP would get a cabinet berth in union cabinet but this was not accepted by the Muftis. Thereafter BJP asked for crucial Home, and Finance ministry for the party but this again was not accepted by PDP, but another bargain was created to end this impasse, It was revealed that a special package for the industry in Jammu has been accepted in lieu of these two ministeries. An offer was also made by the BJP to revoke AFSPA in entire Jammu province but this was not accepted by PDP. Now while the Kashmir based party is not relenting on lifting of AFSPA from Valley, the BJP is equally keen to settle West Pak refugees. PDP has also asked for more Confidence Building measures so that it is easier to bring people back into the national mainstream. A special economic package for rebuilding the state infrastructure has also been agreed upon by the BJP. The central government has also promised financial package to the new coalition government as part of the political deal to form the next government.