New Delhi(HT)Jammu and Kashmir governor Satya Pal Malik has given many reasons for his decision to dissolve the Jammu and Kashmir assembly just when the state’s political parties said they were getting around to stitching a coalition. At a university convocation that the governor addressed in Madhya Pradesh’s Gwalior a few days later, he gave one more.Governor Malik, who appeared to be countering perception that he had acted at the behest of the ruling BJP-led national coalition, told the students that if he had looked towards Delhi for instructions, Sajad Lone would have formed the government. And “I would have gone down in history as a dishonest man”.
“So I ended this matter. Now they (Delhi) can abuse me but I am convinced that what I did, is right,” he said, according to a widely-circulated video clip of his address that has triggered sharp reactions in Jammu and Kashmir.Governor Malik has broadly explained the last-minute dissolution of the state assembly to fears that politicians would have formed what he had described as an “opportunistic” regime.Mehbooba Mufti-led PDP and Omar Abdullah’s National Conference, the two bitter rivals who came together in a rare move, have attacked the Governor’s timing of dissolving the house.
Soon after he stunned the two regional parties with his surprise decision, Governor Malik had alluded to the BJP’s preference. The day after the assembly’s dissolution, Governor Malik told reporters: “Had I followed the BJP instructions, then I would have allowed their candidate (Sajad Lone) to stake claim. I didn’t listen to any of them. I did what was right under state constitution”.
Peoples Democratic Party chief spokesperson Rafi Ahmad Mir said the video of the Governor’s address has revealed how things are forced upon Kashmir. “If they (Delhi) would have installed Sajad Lone as chief minister, it would have been a political disaster. Delhi should seriously rethink and stop doing experiments in the state,’’ Mir told HT.
J&K Congress president Ghulam Ahmad Mir said the governor had exposed how the BJP made efforts to form the government and install a person with two legislators as chief minister. “From day one, BJP wanted to instal the government in J&K by encouraging defections, horse trading and other things. Governor Malik has exposed the plot of the BJP.’’