After the breaking of the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) bloc in West Bengal, Bihar, and Punjab, opposition parties in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir are also finding it difficult to evolve consensus to field common candidates against the BJP.
Amid claims and counter-claims of Congress and the National Conference on five seats of Jammu and Kashmir, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)- another constituent of the INDIA bloc, is going to adopt a different path due to the "arrogant" attitude of the coalition partners.
PDP's crucial meeting on Feb 17
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is going to convene a crucial meeting on February 17 to devise a strategy for the coming Lok Sabha elections.
Reports said that the PDP leadership has taken serious note of the attitude of the NC and Congress leadership in sidelining the party while discussing seat-sharing among constituents of the INDIA bloc in J&K.
The idea of the INDIA bloc is not getting off the ground in Jammu and Kashmir. After the National Conference, now PDP also seems to be walking away from the alliance.
Reports said that during the February 17 meeting party will discuss the Srinagar-Ganderbal parliamentary constituency which is presently being represented by Dr. Farooq Abdullah.
Important to mention here that PDP President Mehbooba Mufti is currently in Saudi Arabia on Umrah and she is returning on 16 February.
Recently PDP leaders announced that the party will not field its candidate against alliance partners to defeat the BJP, provided that the party's interests are fully taken care of during the discussions on seat-sharing.
NC announces field candidates on these three seats of Jammu and Kashmir
There are five parliamentary constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir and the National Conference has announced to field its candidates on three of these and has made it clear that it will not leave Baramulla-Kupwara, Srinagar-Ganderbal and Anantnag-Rajouri seats for PDP or Congress. The party is ready to leave Jammu-Reasi and Kathua-Doda-Udhampur seats for Congress or PDP.
PDP started discussions on the names of candidates
After the announcement of the NC not to leave any seat of Kashmir Valley for coalition partners, the PDP leadership is facing pressure from its workers to take a tough stand. It is all due to pressure from the workers that PDP has started discussions on the names of candidates.
PDP leader Sartaj Madani said the party has yet not decided on candidates for any seat but the party is going to convene a meeting of senior leaders related to each parliamentary constituency and take their opinion.
PDP's Parliamentary Board will meet on February 17
All Parliamentary Board members of the PDP will attend the meeting along with prominent workers from the Srinagar-Ganderbal parliamentary constituency.
Party chief Mehbooba will also be present in it and three members of the Parliamentary Board will participate. Amrik Singh Reen and Chaudhary Hameed from the Jammu division are included in the board. Chaudhary Hameed has currently gone on Umrah.
Sartaj Madani said that a meeting of leaders and workers from Jammu-Reasi and Kathua-Udhampur-Doda parliamentary seats will also be called soon. He, however, said that meetings for these constituencies will be held after the return of the party chief.
With Lok Sabha elections and assembly elections expected any time thereafter, PDP president Mehbooba Mufti has formed a five-member board to coordinate with potential candidates and seats in case of alliance with other parties. Sartaj Madani, Abdul Rehman Veeri, Dr. Mehboob Baig, Amrik Singh Reen, and Hameed Chaudhary have been included in the Board.