Srinagar: Taking democratic values to new low, Jammu & Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik on Wednesday dissolved the state assembly after Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Chief Mehbooba Mufti staked claim to form a government with supports from members of Congress and National Conference (NC).
"By virtue of powers vested upon me in terms of Proclamation No. P-1/18 of 2018 dated 20th June, 2018 issued under sub-section (1) of section 92 and in exercise of the powers conferred upon me by clause (b) of sub-section (2) of section 53 of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir, I hereby dissolve the Legislative Assembly", Principal Secretary to Governor Umang Narula said in a communique dated November 21 quoting Satya Pal Malik.
The Governor's sudden decision came hours after former J&K Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti staked claim to form government with the supports from Congress and NC MLAs.
“As you are aware that Peoples Democratic Party is the largest party in the State assembly having a strength of 29. You might have gathered from the media reports that the Congress and National Conference have also decided to extend support to our party to form a government in the State", she said in her letter to the governor.
"National Conference (NC) has a strenght of 15 and the Congress 12. This takes our collective strength to 56", she said.
Tagging her letter to a Twitter message, Mufti wrote, "Have been trying to send this letter to Rajbhavan. Strangely the fax is not received. Tried to contact HE Governor on phone. Not available. Hope you see it @jandkgovernor."
Earlier in the day, senior PDP leader Altaf Bukhari said the PDP, National Conference and Congress have agreed to join hands to form a new government in Jammu and Kashmir. The businessman-turned-politician said around 60 MLAs were supporting the proposed alliance in the 87-member House.
"The leaders have agreed to form an alliance. The PDP, NC, Congress at the leadership level have agreed. What are the contours of the alliance, it has not come down to MLAs. I am an MLA and I have been told only this much," Bukhari told reporters here.
The Peoples Democratic Party leader, who met National Conference vice president Omar Abdullah earlier in the day, said he did not discuss the alliance issue with the former chief minister.
"We keep on meeting. I had no talks about the alliance but generally we all meet," he said.
Meanwhile media reports said the Governor cited the “impossibility of forming a stable government by the coming together of political parties with opposing political ideologies” and the “fragile security scenario in the state… where there is a need to have a stable and supportive environment for security forces” to dissolve the state Assembly Wednesday night.
Interestingly, PDP and BJP despite being "ideologically poles apart" formed the government in the state after the 2014 state elections. Mehbooba Mufti became Chief Minister but had to step down after BJP withdrew support in June 2018.
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