In what exposes the fissures within the Mehbooba Mufti-led PDP, the party has expelled eight of its leaders who met the foreign delegation in Srinagar. The party has expelled these leaders for going “against the will of the people.” Taking to Twitter, the party tweeted, “PDP expels leaders for going against the will of the people,” from its official Twitter handle. The expelled leaders, all former MLAs, are Dilawar Mir, Rafi Ahmad Mir, Zaffar Iqbal, Abdul Majeed Padroo, Raja Manzoor Khan, Javaid Hussain Baig, Qamar Hussain and Abdul Rahim Rather.
— J&K PDP (@jkpdp) January 9, 2020
A press release by the PDP read, “In view of the development post-August 5 and the unilateral move of the government of India which has violated the will and hurt the sentiments of people, it has come to attention of the party that certain party leaders have been part of the parleys which go against the interests of the state, official position and core beliefs of the party.”
Interestingly, the expelled PDP leaders were part of a delegation that met the Jammu & Kashmir Lieutenant Governor, G C Murmu on Tuesday. They also met the envoys from 15 countries who visited the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir on Thursday for a two-day visit. The PDP has been clearly taken aback by the manner in which the eight leaders seem to have come out supporting the Modi government’s move of abrogating Article 370.
PDP is more radical, terror sympathising of the two main regional parties in the Union Territory- the National Conference (NC) and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). It has been more vocal in pursuing the anti-India. In fact, the party is accustomed to taking an anti-India stand on almost every single issue. The party is clearly not able to digest how its leaders met the envoys from 15 countries who visited Jammu & Kashmir. Their meeting with the envoys is bound to be seen as a move that vindicates and endorses India’s move of abrogating Article 370 and bifurcating the erstwhile state of Jammu & Kashmir, into two separate Union Territories.
What further exposes the growing divide within the PDP is the fact that a top party leader, Muzaffar Hussain Baig has also hit out at the party supremo, Mehbooba Mufti. Baig, the former Deputy Chief Minister of the erstwhile state of Jammu & Kashmir was answering a query about Mehbooba Mufti’s statement that no one would touch the tricolour if Article 370 is tampered with.
He said, “Statements like that resulted in downgrading J&K from state to Union Territory. That did not help us. That should not have been made.” Baig added, “My opinion is that if you want to talk about issues relating to people of Jammu and Kashmir, you will have to talk in a dignified and civilised manner. You can’t achieve anything by coercing the Prime Minister, Home Minister or NSA.”
There is a palpable sense of growing dissatisfaction with the top leadership within the PDP. Baig, a top party leader hitting out at the PDP supremo is suggestive of an imminent split, or implosion within the PDP.
It is relevant to mention here that the PDP had also expelled a senior party leader and Rajya Sabha MP Nazir Ahmad Laway last year after he attended Lieutenant Governor GC Murmu’s oath-taking ceremony. Mehbooba Mufti clearly doesn’t tolerate any leader supporting Indian nationalism, or even becoming a part of the mainstream political landscape. Such diktats do not seem to be going down well even with the senior leadership of the party. The PDP is therefore all set for a major setback in terms of an unprecedented implosion.