Srinagar, July 31: PDP founder Mufti Mohammad Sayeed had put a precondition before Prime Minister Narendra Modi for government formation in Jammu and Kashmir in 2015, seeking an assurance that Article 370 of the Constitution will not be removed by the Centre, party president Mehbooba Mufti claimed on Monday.
Addressing a gathering on the 24th foundation day of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) here, Mufti said her father Sayeed was not power hungry and wanted to deliver Jammu and Kashmir from its problems and troubles.
“When Mufti sahib had 28 seats (in the 2014 Assembly polls), he met Modi and gave his list of conditions for government formation. He took the assurance from the BJP government (at the Centre) that (Article) 370 will not be touched. He tied their hands. He was not after power, otherwise he would not take three months to form the (coalition) government (in Jammu and Kashmir),” she said.
“Despite having only 16 MLAs (in the 2002 Assembly polls, Mufti sahib told the Congress (which had 20 seats) that he would form the government only if talks were held with Pakistan and separatists,” she said.
Mufti said her father did not believe in misleading people and firmly believed that Jammu and Kashmir’s future was with India.
“Despite being the (Pradesh) Congress president, he accepted the decision taken by Indira Gandhi in 1975 to bring back Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah into the mainstream,” she said.
Mufti said during her father’s first term as chief minister, significant progress was made on both the reconciliation and development fronts in Jammu and Kashmir.
“The Advani-Hurriyat talks were held, the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad Road was re-opened and development work got a fillip,” she said.