Jammu: Congress in Jammu and Kashmir on Monday boycotted the swearing-in ceremony of the Mehbooba Mufti government in protest against the imposition of the President’s rule in Arunachal Paradesh and Uttarakhand, and termed the new PDP-BJP combine as an “unholy” alliance.
BJP, however, was quick to hit back at Congress and asked it to “look into the past” when its governments at the Centre “dismissed” non-Congress dispensations in the states.
“We boycotted the swearing-in ceremony of Chief Minister Mufti as this coalition was unholy from the very beginning. The BJP-PDP government is a plan of RSS,” J&K Congress Chief Gulam Ahmed Mir told reporters.
“RSS is destroying all institutions in the country. First they destroyed educational institutions and other bodies and now they are targeting elected forums…like in Arunachal Pradesh and Uttrakhand. It (the boycott) was aimed at protesting this,” Mir said.
“We were to stage protests in all districts but postponed them because a constitutional activity was going on,” he said. Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu, who was here to attend the swearing-in ceremony, however, criticised the opposition party by listing instances when its governments at the Centre “dismissed” non-Congress governments in the states.
“Congress is a very experienced party. It remained in power for several decades…It is unfortunate that it boycotted the swearing-in ceremony of a democratically elected government in Jammu and Kashmir,” he told reporters at Raj Bhawan. “I want to tell my friends from Congress that the reason they have given is not a justified reason,” he said.
Naidu said the first non-Congress government was formed in Kerala in 1957 and dismissed by the Congress dispensation in 1959. “In Andhra Pradesh, they dismissed another non-Congress government in the past. They also dismissed the Karunanidhi government in Tamil Nadu,” he said.
“President’s rule was imposed seven times during the Jawaharlal Nehru era and 50 times during the Indira Gandhi government. Six times during Rajiv Gandhi’s period, 11 in Narsimha Rao’s and ten during Manmohan Singh’s tenure,” Naidu said. “During Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Narendra Modi’s tenure, it was imposed only six times,” he said.
“In Arunachal Pradesh, the trouble did not start because of the Centre…It was started by a Congress MLA only. There were internal problems.