In a major political turn of events ahead of 2019 general elections, the Jammu and Kashmir government crashed on Tuesday after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) called off its alliance with the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
"We have taken a decision, it is untenable for BJP to continue in alliance with PDP in Jammu & Kashmir, hence we are withdrawing," BJP National General Secretary RAM Madhav said in a press conference in Delhi.
Holding Mehbooba Mufti responsible for the current unrest in the Valley, Madhav accused her of non-cooperation and demanded Governor's rule in the state.
"Keeping in mind larger interest of India's security and integrity, fact is that J&K is an integral part of India, in order to bring control over the situation prevailing in the state we have decided that the reigns of power in the state be handed over to the Governor," he said.
Asked why the saffron party entered into an alliance with the PDP if this had to be its fate, the BJP national general secretary said, "We had to respect the mandate of the people. If we would not have formed govt at that time, Governor's rule or Presidential rule would have been imposed in the Valley. We had an alliance with them just for the mandate that was given by people".
The decision to break alliance with PDP comes days after the Centre revoked unilateral Ramzan ceasefire in the Valley. Sources said that Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti was not happy with Centre's decision to resume anti-terror operations in the Valley.
Reacting to the development, former state chief minister and National Conference chief Omar Abdullah tweeted, "And so it has come to pass........(sic)."
Another disgruntled BJP ally Shiv Sena said that the saffron party's alliance with the PDP was "anti-national" and its chief had predicted this a long ago.
"This alliance was anti-national & unnatural. Our party chief had said, this alliance won't work out. Had they continued with it they would have had to answer in 2019 Lok Sabha election," ANI quoted Sanjay Raut as saying.
Earlier, BJP chief Amit Shah, who was scheduled to visit Srinagar on June 23, had called an urgent meeting of state BJP leaders and ministers, including state party president Ravinder Raina and party general secretary (organisation) Ashok Kaul.
Watch: Full press conference of BJP on the issue