In another setback for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), former minister and party’s prominent face from Central Kashmir, Javed Mustafa Mir has resigned from the party. Mir is a three-time MLA from central Kashmir’s Chadoora constituency and his exit from the party comes as a big blow to the PDP.
However, this is not the lone incident of a member leaving the PDP. Javed Mustafa Mir became the fourth minister to leave the party after the collapse of BJP-PDP alliance in the state. The former ministers who have resigned from the PDP include Haseeb Drabu, Imran Ansari and Basharat Bukhari. Two former MLAs have also resigned from the party.
Earlier, Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) pulled its support from the Jammu and Kashmir government, which led to the fall of the Mehbooba Mufti government and the imposition of Governor’s rule in the state. Rumours about dissatisfied party PDP MLAs willing to lend support to the BJP to form the government in the state had been on the rise ever since. Some statements have also been issued by MLAs and leaders of the PDP, which highlight the growing dissatisfaction among PDP members. Mufti instead of pacifying her own leaders has decided to lay all the blame on the BJP.
PDP spokesperson Rafi Ahmad Mir termed Mir’s resignation “unfortunate”. “It is not a happy sign. When party is gearing up for elections, we need everybody on board. It is very unfortunate. He has not expressed anything and not given any reasons. But there must be some difference somewhere,” the PDP spokesperson said. When asked about what the party was doing to stop leaders from quitting, Mir said, “We are taking steps.”
Few days after the BJP withdrew its support in J&K assembly, Mehbooba Mufti had crossed the line while trying to warn BJP and had said, “If, like in 1987, Delhi hijacks the vote of this state’s people, if this kind of breakup of loyalties is attempted, the manner in which a Salahuddin (or) a Yasin Malik came to the fore will (happen again)… if those in Delhi try to break up the PDP, let there be no doubt the result of that will be exceedingly dangerous.”
This statement shows the desperation of Mehbooba Mufti who has been trying all that she can to save her relevance in the political scenario of the state. Syed Salahuddin, the head of Hizbul Mujahideen and Yasin Malik the head of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front are known terrorists from the Kashmir valley. She seems to have committed a disgraceful offence by trying to justify terrorists and their actions, something which the people of the state will always remember. The BJP, on the other hand, had responded strongly to her anti-national stand.
The increasing discontent among the party leaders may bring a tough time for the PDP chief and the party as a whole. If leaders like Javed Mustafa Mir, Drabu, and Ansari distance themselves from the party, Mehbooba might not have a ground to stand on, in the upcoming elections. Not to forget the fact that the assembly elections in Jammu Kashmir will take place simultaneously with the upcoming Lok Sabha election.