Jammu: Making it clear that his party is not ready to support BJP in case the PDP-BJP alliance snaps, NC leader Omar Abdullah on Sunday said that PDP and BJP were scared of fresh polls in the state.
“They are scared. Neither BJP is ready to go to the people nor PDP. From the day one I have maintained that if these two parties are not ready to come together, then they must tell the Governor and the Governor must dissolve the assembly,” Omar told reporters on the sidelines of a function here.
He said when Mufti Sayeed was alive, his daughter Mehbooba missed no occasion to defend her father’s decision of forming the alliance with BJP.
“When Mufti Sahab was alive, on two occasions in Delhi during two seminars and when Prime Minister came to Srinagar Mehbooba Mufti defended this alliance,” he said.
The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister said Mehbooba Mufti must break her silence as she cannot keep the entire state guessing on government formation.
“Mehbooba Mufti has been quiet for long and she can no longer remain silent. She must clarify her stand on two-three issues and clear the air as to what are those CBMs and how long she will wait for those Confidence Building Measures and why did the need of CBMs suddenly arise after the demise of Mufti Mohammed Sayeed,” Omar said.
He said that although an elected government is not in place, the alliance between PDP and BJP is still intact.
“The agreement as far as our knowledge is concerned, the alliance (between BJP and PDP) still exists. We haven’t heard either from BJP or PDP that alliance has been broken, so the alliance exists and if the alliance exists, then why not government (is formed),” he said.
“Agenda of the alliance was formed and Mufti sahab was made the chief minister. What has changed in the past ten months that today even though they have numbers in the assembly they are not ready to form the government,” he said.
Omar said that National Conference has been telling them time and again that if they are not ready to form the government, they should be bold enough to break the alliance.
“We will go back to the people, but I am unable to understand the way of their leadership. They ask for Confidence Building Measures, but I am not sure that within the party people know or not, but outside nobody knows what they have asked for,” he said.
He said that even BJP was not aware of what PDP was asking for. “Even as BJP has said that please clearly tell us what you are asking for, so we too would want to know what are the CBMs which Mehbooba Mufti is asking for, and did they keep a timeframe, a deadline,” Omar said.
Omar said, “Even if Mehbooba has demanded some CBMs then she should tell the people that what are the CBMs and should also fix a timeframe as the state is not going to wait for them forever. They should have a timeframe and say if in so many days we don’t get a reply, then this alliance is finished and we will go to the people.”
Asked whether his party would support BJP if the latter approaches it for government formation, the NC leader said that his doors for BJP were closed a year ago and they remain closed even today.
“Earlier also BJP had explored those options. I have time and again said that National Conference as of today is not willing to form any relationship with them (BJP). I am not even ready to discuss this issue. We closed the doors for BJP a year ago and the doors continue be closed even today,” he said.
On his party’s alliance with BJP when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister, Omar said that BJP has changed over the years.
“That alliance did not convert into an alliance for the state as that was restricted to the Centre only and there is a huge difference between BJP of Vajpayee and that of today,” he said.
Omar said that his party was ready to go to the people as it always wanted BJP to be kept out of government in Jammu and Kashmir and that was the reason that his party had offered unconditional support to PDP after the assembly polls.
“We are ready to go to the people. We had made an offer a year ago that if Mufti sahab wanted to be the chief minister, National Conference was ready to offer unconditional support as we did not wanted to see BJP in the government in the state and we knew that with the coming of BJP, the situation in the state will not improve and will worsen and that is evident from the past ten months, be it in Jammu or in Kashmir,” he said.
“What could be the reason for the ongoing stalemate over government formation and whether the PDP president is scared to lead the state,” Omar said.
“She is a leader and she has to lead and she cannot follow, even if she is not ready to lead the state as of today then with conviction she should announce but she is not even saying no and not yes and has kept the entire state guessing,” he said.
Questioning the PDP president over the timing for asking for the CBMs, Omar said why didn’t she ask for the same when her father was alive.
“See we waited for few days as we knew there was shock as she needed some time, but a month has passed, the people of this state cannot be made to wait for the decision of one person, that is why I said that if Mehbooba Mufti is talking about CBMs then she should clearly tell us, what are those CBMs and fix a timeframe and say that in a week or in ten days they should be announced,” he said.
It is a complex situation and only Mehbooba Mufti has the answer, he said.