Kashmir Assembly Dissolution: India’s Political Elite Reacts

Srinagar

The Congress on Thursday attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for using Governor Satya Pal Malik to dissolve the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly “illegally and unconstitutionally”.

“We strongly condemn the way the Governor illegally and unconstitutionally dissolved the Assembly.”

“The Governor has toyed with the Constitution and it was done at the behest of the Prime Minister and the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO),” Congress leader Manish Tewari told the media.

The former Union Minister questioned as to why Malik did not dissolve the House in the last six months after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in June withdrew support to the Mehbooba Mufti-led Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) coalition government.

“For the last five-six months, the BJP tried its best to garner support by indulging in horse trading. But when its conspiracy failed to yield any result, it got the Governor to dissolve the Assembly just after the PDP, National Conference and the Congress staked claim to form the government,” Tewari said.

Senior politician Sharad Yadav called the dissolution of Jammu and Kashmir assembly a “murder of democracy”.

“Democracy has been murdered in J&K by dissolving the assembly. I oppose and condemn the dissolution,” said Loktantri Janata Dal party leader Yadav.

The seven-term Lok Sabha MP said the governor’s action was evidently biased when an alliance of the major parties had staked claim to form the government.

According to media reports Yadav also found fault with the government’s decision to hold the urban and rural civic body polls in the state, terming it as a “mockery of democracy” as, he said, the elections had been held without the participation of major political parties in the state.

Yadav said the BJP neither cares for the Constitution nor it has any respect for various institutions of the country.

“What is the meaning of an election when the people’s mandate was to be butchered by dissolving the assembly? Similarly, there is no meaning of the local bodies polls when the major political parties did not participate in it,” reports quoted Yadav as saying.

He said whatever is happening during the BJP’s regime is against the democracy and mandate of the people.

“People are fed up with the state of affairs in the country. I am unable to understand why the ruling party is not mending its way despite criticism of their actions by people from all walks of life,” he added.

He said he would like to advise the government of India and the ruling party to adhere to the norms laid down in our Constitution and do not play petty politics for the sake of being in power.

Earlier in the day former Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram also targeted Malik saying parliamentary democracy was “outdated” for the BJP-appointed Governor.

“As long as no one staked a claim to form a government, Jammu and Kashmir Governor was happy to keep the Assembly under suspension. The moment someone staked a claim, he dissolved the Assembly. Parliamentary democracy standing on its head.”

“The Westminster model of democracy is outdated. Like in all other matters, it is the Gujarat model that has appealed to the J&K Governor,” Chidambaram tweeted.

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