The Bold Voice of J&K

Stalemate continues

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Beaten but not ousted is the spirit of National Conference after the Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir. The party has been able to manage 15 out of 87 seats from where it contested even beating the figure of exit polls in the face of prevailing anti-incumbency. With stalemate continuing in government formation every combination and formulation would be worked out to come to a consensus for the post of chief minister and if the sharing of the term comes who is to lead the first phase. The situation here is unfolding like government formation in Maharashtra. Three ministers of the party were able to retain their seats on account of their contribution to the society. But party fought back in rural area especially in Kashmir which has been the stronghold since Sheikh Abdullah initiated the land reforms  in late 1940 and 1950. In Srinagar old city voters have always backed National Conference. Being on the edge Chief Minister Omar Abdullah who has put in his papers was quiet vociferous and refused to accept any speculation on support to Bharatiya Janata Party on government formation.  Speculations are ripe that BJP is trying to make contact with Dr Farooq Abdullah for his party’s support in the face of Omar’s refusal to join in BJP-NC government. Bharatiya Janata Party has won 25 seats, three less than the PDP, has made it clear that it will explore all the options for forming the government.  BJP is more inclined to an alliance with the National Conference than the PDP, since the NC will not be in a position to stake claim for the chief minister’s post as a junior partner. A party or alliance needs 44 seats in the 87-member J&K assembly to form government. In any scenario about the formation of government by the two major parties PDP and BJP, they have to join hands, with independent candidates. The independent candidates are seven, of which two Independents support the National Conference. Meanwhile any change in combination in numbers will have adverse effect in the government formation by the combine.  With the present Assembly’s term coming to an end on January 19, next year there is enough time for consolidation, but any delay in finalizing new formation may bring in stalemate which could be harmful for the state.

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