PDP and BJP come to a mutual consensus; Coalition Govt on Feb 22

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After keeping everyone puzzled for a gut-wrenching period of 50 days, both the frontrunners of the assembly elections, PDP and BJP have agreed upon the major contentious issues to form a government.

PDP leader Mufti Mohammed Sayeed has proposed the date of 22 Feb as the date for government formation. The BJP on its own end has also exhibited their eagerness to ally with the PDP such that the political drama can now come to an end and the mandate of the people be respected. The dialogue process is to begin today as both the parties await the return of BJP general Secretary Ram Madhav, who was in London and should reach Delhi today.

Sources in the PDP say, “We have proposed the date of 22 Feb. The rest depends on how long the dialogue process takes and a concluding meeting of Mufti Mohammed Sayeed with the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi.

The BJP has accepted the demands of PDP which by and large are Kashmir centric. These are the demands of revocation of the special powers Act of the Armed forces, protection of the special status of the state, return of the hydroelectric projects to the state, an economic package that seeks to address the unemployment of the Kashmiri youth and dialogue with Pakistan for the improvement of bilateral relations.

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It is important to note that the Saffron party’s keenness to quicken the government formation process can also be a direct result of the unprecedented washout in the Delhi Elections. The party wants to get rid of the right-wing label and a coalition with the PDP will convey that very point. An association with a party representing the muslim-majority state should remove the status of ‘untouchable’ from the party. After the Delhi debacle, the BJP seems to be looking nationally and an association with the PDP should help the party’s National interests where a successful alliance with a party representing the muslim majority state should help the BJP warm up to minority votes.