Srinagar: The National Conference said on Thursday that after the PDP turned down its formal offer of support for government formation, it has closed “the alliance chapter” and will stay in opposition.
“We have not received any formal refusal from the PDP. But if their chief spokesman has declined the offer, we may take it as a refusal because we won’t presume that he has spoken without authorisation. So this chapter stands closed,” NC spokesperson Junaid Azim Mattu told Kashmir Reader.
“Now that they don’t want NC support, we have absolutely no qualms in playing the role of a credible opposition,” he added.
On Wednesday, PDP chief spokesman Naeem Akhter termed the NC’s formal offer of support as “pure political chicanery” and said the oldest regional party was not in a position to call the shots.
“They are trying to impose their will and decide about government formation. But NC must realise that they are margins of Kashmir politics. With just 15 seats they are in no position to call the shots,” Akhter had said.
Mattu said his party had offered outside and unconditional support in the “larger interest” of the state so that the PDP doesn’t have to compromise on the regional agenda of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.
“We are not power hungry. We never asked for a share in the government. Our priority was and will remain the welfare of the people. The purpose of this alliance was to respect the regional aspirations,” Mattu said.
He said the NC had made obvious that its support will be only for the PDP and that it will not ally with either the BJP or the Congress.
Being the largest political party, PDP had been offered support by both NC and Congress. While it has said that it has kept doors open to an alliance with the Congress, the PDP has renewed informal talks with the BJP for government formation.
Mattu said if the PDP joins hands with the BJP, it will have to answer the people from whom it sought votes to keep the saffron party at bay.
“If they align with the BJP, they will have to answer why they did so when they had the support of a regional party,” Mattu said.
The elections results announced last month threw up a fractured mandate in the 87-member Assembly. Having 28 seats, the PDP is the largest party, followed by the BJP that won all its 25 from Jammu region. The NC bagged 15 seats while the Congress got 12. To form a government, a party or a coalition needs 44 seats.