How do you view the delay in government formation?
As Mufti Mohd Sayeed was head of the coalition, it is the responsibility of the PDP to form the government along with the BJP. Last year, it took them 67 days to agree on an “agenda of alliance”… People voted for a democratic government, not for governor’s rule. This is the second time the state is under governor’s rule after the elections were held. It should not last any longer and the onus lies on both the PDP and the BJP.
Does it appear to you there are any serious differences between the two?
The “agenda of alliance” is intact, there are no visible signs that the PDP or the BJP is going to break it. And only these two parties have the numbers. So, when you have numbers, when you have a “sacred document” to guide you, then what is the obstacle?
Are fresh elections an option?
Who are we to say the state should go for elections? This coalition needs to come clear: if they are forming the government, on what conditions; if they are breaking up, what are the reasons. A responsible politician like me cannot say let’s go for elections unless they tell us the reasons for breaking. People voted for a government that would last six years. It is not easy to hold elections every year.
The Congress had earlier offered support to the PDP. Does that offer still stand?
No one will jump into this fire as long as the PDP is in alliance with the BJP.
Is the Congress in touch with the PDP?
You should ask, is the PDP in touch with the Congress. There is no dialogue on between PDP and Congress leaders at any level.
Does it appear to you that Mehbooba Mufti is struggling to take a decision?
Yes, it is a testing time for the PDP, especially for Mehbooba. Till yesterday she was PDP president under the patronage of her father, who was a visionary. Suddenly the entire responsibly has shifted on her shoulders.
Do you think the PM should have visited Mufti Sayeed in hospital in Delhi?
Yes, people are pointing out that when Mufti was in hospital, the PM didn’t visit him… When a head of state is fighting for his life, it was the PM’s responsibility to visit him.
How does the Prime Minister’s package for Kashmir?
It was just packaging, not a package. Of Rs 80,000 crore announced, projects worth Rs 40,000 crore had been sanctioned by the UPA. The remaining Rs 40,000 crore will be released in the next 10 years, which makes it Rs 4,000 crore per year.