Mehbooba wants assurances from BJP high command

Jammu: PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday said she needed “assurances” from the BJP high command on “time-bound implementation” of the agenda of alliance between the two parties before staking claim to power in Jammu and Kashmir.

Former deputy chief minister and BJP leader Nirmal Singh called on the Peoples Democratic Party president at the state circuit house in Jammu in the afternoon. The two held a meeting for nearly 25 minutes.

Although the BJP described the meeting as a courtesy call, sources in the two parties told IANS that Nirmal Singh assured Mehbooba Mufti of continued support to head the PDP-BJP coalition for the remaining period of the state assembly.

“Mehbooba Mufti, however, told Nirmal Singh that she would not stake claim to power unless she had an assurance from the highest quarters in the BJP on time-bound implementation of the agenda of alliance between the two parties,” a PDP source said.

BJP leaders later took part in a core group meeting at the residence of another party leader, Ashok Koul, in Jammu.

Mehbooba Mufti and BJP leaders are scheduled to meet Governor N.N. Vohra at Raj Bhavan on Tuesday evening. Vohra called the PDP and BJP leaders to discuss the prospects of government formation.

The state has been under Governor’s Rule since January 8 after Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed passed away in Delhi following a brief illness.