The hour long meeting between PM Modi, and PDP patron Mufti Mohd Sayeed, and a hug thereafter has managed to infuse a new energy in the PDP-BJP coalition, and ensured that Jammu and Kashmir will get a popular government soon. PDP leader Mufti Mohd Sayeed formally staked a claim before the Governor to form the coalition government. Sources tell that Mufti will head a large cabinet of 25 members, and the swearing in ceremony will take place on Sunday March 1, at General Zorawar Singh stadium in Jammu University. While BJP will have a Deputy CM but it is being said that majority of the plum portfolios have gone to the kitty of PDP which are in the process of being finalized.
During the meeting between PM Modi, and CM to be Mufti in Delhi the duo discussed various issues pertaining to CMP, and put a final seal on the Common Minimum Programme which will decide governance in the state. The tension between the two sides seems to have eased with both leaders hugging after the meeting, and posing for the cameras. A gamut of issues were discussed, and how the state could be taken forward while keeping the contentious issues aside.
Invited by Mufti to attent the swearing-in ceremony, PM Modi also agreed to attend the ceremony, and he is scheduled to come for an hour to Jammu in the afternoon.
Soon after the meeting, Mufti admitted that it was difficult to form the coalition as it was like bringing north, and south pole together. He also said that this alliance was both political, and also for governance in the state. Sayeed also met former PM Manmohan Singh, and senior BJP leaders Lal Krishna Advani, and former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee, and his friend Sharad Yadav in Delhi.
Speaking about Article 370, and AFSPA the PDP patron asked the media persons to wait for the CMP which has outlined the key result areas for the government, and also ways to handle contentious issues. Mufti also said that the goal of his government would be to provide healing touch to the people. He also said that the BJP has got mandate in Jammu, and PDP in Kashmir, and forming the coalition will bring the two regions, and people together. Sayeed also outlined how PM Vajpayee had etended a hand of friendship towards Pakistan which led to normalization of situation in J&K. Mufti further said that they want to turn the state into an island of peace.
BJP’s pointman Ram Madhav also said that the people should wait for the swearing-in ceremony after which the crucial CMP document will be revealed. He however said that no compromise have have been made by either of the partners, and the coalition is based on ensuring good governance in the state. Madhav also indicated that CMP had finally been approved by the Sangh as well, which sources said had opposed it leading to the last minute revision.
Earlier in the day, BJP MLAs called on the Governor, and handed over the letter supporting PDP to form the government lead by Mufti Sayeed. With almost 25 members cabinet being sworn in on Sunday, there is little scope for future expansion of the cabinet.