Jammu, December 25
Asserting that it has several options in government formation in Jammu and Kashmir, the BJP today said it holds the “veto power” in the state.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, BJP’s central observer for J&K, told reporters here that the party was actively in touch with Independent and “unattached” MLAs.
“Whoever forms the government, the BJP must have a crucial role in it,” he said.
Jaitley said BJP now holds the “veto power” in the state.
“Earlier, the veto power was in the hands of Congress and now it’s in the hands of BJP,” he said.
Addressing the media after a meeting of newly-elected BJP MLAs, Jaitley said the legislators authorised party president Amit Shah to decide the future course of action on government formation.
“All options are open for us. The newly-elected MLAs of the party have decided that they will go with the decision of the party president Amit Shah who will take a decision which is good for the party, the state and the country,” he said.
“The central leadership of the party will decide where it wants to sit in the assembly or how to form the government,” he said.
On a question whether the BJP would go with the National Conference or the Peoples Democratic Party, Jaitley said “we will go with the three principles—strengthening national sovereignty, development of this region and maintenance of regional balance.”
Jaitley described as “inaccurate” media reports that BJP leadership had held discussions with Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on government formation.
“Some inaccurate reports have appeared in this regard and I would only urge you not to go by the reports which are not accurate,” Jaitley said.
He said even though the PDP has got maximum number of seats in the Assembly, the BJP got the popular vote as its vote percentage was greater as compared to other parties.
“The mandate is for a hung Assembly but elections are held for the formation of the government. The newly-elected party members of the legislative Assembly discussed the issue … like what type of government can be formed in a hung assembly, who will lead the party in the assembly,” Jaitley said.
He said the newly-elected MLAs reached a consensus that the central leadership of the party, led by Amit Shah, would take the final decision on these issues.
Jaitley, who flew in here as BJP’s central observer for the party legislators’ meeting, said the general consensus among the newly-elected representatives was that the government must be formed.
He said in Jammu region the party got an overwhelming mandate by winning 25 out of 37 seats, whereas the mandate in the Kashmir Valley remained divided.
“Jammu voted in favor of the BJP, whereas the Valley remained divided,” he said.
BJP’s newly-elected MLA from Billawar constituency Nirmal Singh said the party was working to give the people of Jammu and Kashmir a stable government.
While expressing confidence that the next Chief Minister in the state would be from his party, he said all the options were open for the party in the state.
“We have the support of six Independents and every option is open for us, but the priority is to give a stable government to the people of Jammu and Kashmir,” Singh Said. — PTI
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