|J A M M U C
& CK A S H M I R
Wednesday, December 15, 1999
Maulvi Ansari feels
charge sheet: Congress holds protest
BJP told to play role of
Opposition in J&K
Ansari feels cheated
JAMMU, Dec 14 The Housing and Urban Development Minister, Maulvi Iftikhar Hussain Ansari, who was dropped from the Cabinet yesterday is a disheartened as he feels that he has been made a "scapegoat" by a bunch of politicians and bureaucrats.
Maulvi Ansari is disheartened as his two long meetings with the Chief Minister, Dr Farooq Abdullah, bore no fruit. Sources said though the Chief Minister was "convinced" with the arguments dished out by the Maulvi in support of his contention that he was being made a victim of a deep-rooted conspiracy, Dr Abdullah did not side with him.
Dr Abdullah is said to have told him that he was under pressure from the party workers and leaders who wanted the Maulvi to be dropped. And, despite very cordial relations between the Maulvi and Dr Abdullah the latter could not help his friend because the Chief Minister wanted to drop those ministers against whom there were specific charges of corruption and nepotism. This he could do only by sacking Maulvi Ansari against whom the government had framed charges of having received kickbacks from a private firm.
The former minister is a sad man today because the Raju Committee report was tailored to suit the interests of his enemies in the bureaucracy and within the National Conference. He told TNS that he was ready to face consequences if the government released the two reports of the Raju Panel. The committee had been set up to probe into a complaint against the Maulvi having received kickbacks from a private firm which had been assigned the contract of building a sattelite town. As a result of favours to the firm the government had to incur a loss of over Rs 5.30 crore.
Maulvi Ansari said if his relations had some business transactions with the private firm he should not have been held guilty because as the Housing Minister he had not given any concession or favours to the company. He said the Jammu and Kashmir Bank had been asked to certify the financial credibility of the company and if the credibility had not been assessed properly the bank authorities should have been held responsible.
He said he had neither been heard nor the original report was released as his name did not figure in the report. He said when he insisted on the release of the complete report the authorities concerned informed him that there was no second report. He said he asked the government to deny through a press release and it did nothing indicating that the bureaucracy was part of the plan of "maligning my name".
Asked what were his future plans the Maulvi said for the time being he had none. He did not seem to be totally averse to rejoining the Congress in case an offer was made. He, however, made it clear that he had not thought of rejoining the Congress but he would devote his time in exposing corrupt politicians and bureaucrats who conspired against him.
Meanwhile, yesterdays Cabinet reshuffle seems to have "enraged" all those who were dropped from the Council of Ministers. The former Industries Minister, Mr Bodh Raj Bali may be installed as provincial president of the National Conference.
One minister who was sacked in yesterdays reshuffle is said to have told his friends that if the ministers had been dropped on charges of corruption then there were a number of bigwigs in the Council of Ministers who should have been axed first.
In the reshuffle two
important districts of Poonch and Rajouri remained
unrepresented in the Council of Ministers after M.S.
Taroq and Nissar Khan were dropped from the Cabinet. In
addition to this, Anantnag district has remained again
under represented after Syed Abdul Rashid was dropped.
charge sheet: Congress holds protest
JAMMU, Dec 14 The state Congress workers staged a demonstration in front of Raj Bhavan here today demanding that Rajiv Gandhi's name be deleated from the Bofors charge sheet.
Led by Senior Vice-President of the party's state unit, Mr Mangat Ram Sharma, Congress demonstrators shouted slogans against the Farooq Government and Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee.
The demonstrators submitted a memorandum to the Governor demanding scrapping of Rajiv Gandhi's name, alleging that it was a calculated game of the BJP to malign the Congress. It blamed both the state and the Central governments for the political and financial crisis in Jammu and Kashmir.
The demonstrators demanded uninterrupted supply of power and drinking water. The Congress leaders expressed concern over the step-up in militancy-related violence. Mr Sharma alleged that as a result of the poor performance of the Vajpayee-led Government, the security scenario in Jammu and Kashmir had deteriorated.
Mr Ashok Sharma, MLA and Chief Whip of the party in the state assembly, demanded immediate dismissal of the Farooq government as it had failed to deliver the goods. He said that both the BJP-led government in the Centre and the state administration were responsible for the current cash crunch in the state.
If the Governor did not use his constitutional powers, the situation would deteriorate as the National Conference government had adopted a non-serious approach towards key issues and peoples' problems.
demonstration showed that the state unit of the Congress
continues to be a divided house because those owing
allegiance to Mr Ghulam Nabi Azad and the PCC Chief, Mr
Mohammad Aslam, were absent when the protest march
started from the party headquarters.
to play role of Opposition in J&K
JAMMU, Dec 14 The state BJP, led by its President, mr D.K. Kotwal, has been advised by the party high command to play the role of an opposition party in Jammu and Kashmir, notwithstanding the alliance between the NDA and the National Conference. The state BJP has been told in clear terms that though the National Conference is a constituent of the NDA, that should not prohibit the BJP to perform the role of an opposition party.
In fact, there is division in the National Conference and the BJP over the former joining the NDA. While a small section of the National Conference is said to be in favour of the alliance, a majority of the BJP leaders are against it.
When the hawks in the BJP felt embarrassed at the way the National Conference leaders were critical of some BJP leaders, they rushed to Delhi to inform the party high command that it would be harmful for the party to play a complementary role. The issue was discussed for two days. The party General Secretary, Mr Narinder Modi, took a keen interest in the deliberations. Ultimately the BJP team was told that the party had no alliance with the National Conference in Jammu and Kashmir and hence it was free to play the role of an effective Opposition, focussing the government's attention on the day-to-day problems of the people.
The party high command
agreed with the suggestions from the team led by Mr
Kotwal that there was ideological proximity between the
BJP and the National Conference, which did not warrant
the BJP playing second fiddle to the ruling National
Conference. At the same time, senior central BJP leaders
are said to have ruled out the possibility of snapping
ties with the National Conference at the national level.
| Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Chandigarh |
| Editorial | Business | Sport |
| Mailbag | Spotlight | World | 50 years of Independence | Weather |
| Search | Subscribe | Archive | Suggestion | Home | E-mail |