J&K’s next CM will be from Jammu and undoubtedly from BJP: Ravinder Raina
Says Kashmiri Muslim is more loyal and patriotic than other countrymen
Post by on Wednesday, June 29, 2022
To make J&K peaceful & developed and bring Kashmiris out from the quagmire of uncertainty has made the UT a significant region for BJP since accession. Though winning of 25 seats in 2014 forced the party to shake hands with PDP, which however couldn’t complete its full term due to some contentious issues. But the party claims it will cross the magic figure of 50 plus in upcoming assembly polls. Rising Kashmir’s Political Correspondent, Irfan A Mir spoke to BJP, J&K President, Ravinder Raina over current political scenario.
Why J&K always remain nucleus of BJP political activities?
J&K has always remained a significant state for BJP owing to its uncertainty since accession. Besides Mirpur, Kotli, Bimber, Bagh, Muzaffarabad, Gilgit, Baltistan etc, Pakistan also tried to capture this part of Kashmir in 1947. This worsened the law and order situation in J&K. In 1990 a large-scale violence started in Kashmir that led to forcible migration of not only Kashmiri Pandits but also Kashmiri Muslims and Sikhs as well who were staunch nationalists. This situation led to think BJP about strengthening of national interest in J&K instead of doing mere politics. It was BJPs core mission to bring Kashmiris out from quagmire of uncertainty.
It is alleged that BJP works on policies which are not in good taste with J&K’s majority population? Does it hold any truth?
BJP loves and embraces everyone be it from Jammu, Kashmir or Ladakh. There is no discrimination in it. When I was MLA, I brought resolution in J&K Assembly and sought support of every member to pass a unanimous resolution and recommend highest civil award Bharat Ratan to Late Maqbool Sherwani who laid his life for safeguarding the integrity of India. Even our founding members including Shyama Prasad Mukherjee and Atal Bihari Vajpayee considered Kashmiris close to their hearts. They had made it clear that apart from politics, BJP has to bring Kashmiris out from violence. Even PM Modi from Red Fort made it loudly clear that New Delhi will bridge the gap between New Delhi and J&K. That is why the works done by PM Modi made him famous in the hearts of Kashmiris. The Kashmiris had not seen such type of governance in past. They came to know only BJP is representing their aspirations and PM Modi works on his commitments in letter and spirit.
Where does the BJP see itself in Kashmir today?
Our base is strong in valley today. We came out as a single largest political party in J&K in a little span of time. We have three DDC members in Pulwama, Srinagar and Bandipora, besides BDC Chairpersons and ward members in different Municipal Committees. People in large numbers are joining our ranks. Today, the BJP hold rallies in areas where the NC and PDP cannot even think of holding a rally.
NC and PDP allege that BJP disallows them from holding rallies. What is your take?
They can level allegations. They are bigger faces. They knew it is a wind of Narendra Modi now. However they are living in a democratic India and holds democratic right to express dissent. BJP doesn’t believe in muzzling voices.
BJP did coalition with PDP in past. Later they were alleged as “militant friendly” party. What do you want to say?
In 2014, BJP was working on getting 44+ seats out of 87 in J&K. We swept Jammu region with all 25 seats. This was the first time BJP made inroads in Jammu region even in Muslim dominated areas, but still we were below 44. Our top brass sat and discussed the situation threadbare and reached to this conclusion that it is our constitutional obligation to join hands with any political party to form government. When you have 25 seats and you are unable to form a government, it becomes a tool for opposition to denigrate your credibility. Keeping such things in mind, BJP had no option but to shake hands with PDP. Also there was a myth that BJP cannot form government in J&K, and we broke that myth.
What led to the end of the coalition?
There were multiple reasons of breakup. No doubt coalition government worked hard on developmental front which benefited the people at grassroots level, but gradually few contentious issues came to fore that led to disengage with PDP. These were the issues that worsened law and order situation in J&K then. Miscreants were given free hand to create ruckus. Lawlessness was at its peak. Though BJP was part of the Government but was unable to stop things as the posts of CM and Home was lying with PDP. We didn’t want bloodshed here again. We didn’t want come back of 90’s like situation. We didn’t want loss of innocent lives. So we parted ways from the coalition.
What is BJP’s perception about Kashmiri Muslims?
I reiterate my words that Kashmiri Muslim is more loyal and patriotic than other countrymen. It is why Pakistan is targeting our Kashmiris day in and day out. Today I’m visiting every district and town of Kashmir valley, and honestly speaking it is Kashmiri who guards me. Had Kashmiris been traitors, Pakistan would have occupied the whole of Kashmir in 1947. Late Maqbool Sherwani of Baramulla gave tough fight to trained soldiers of Pakistan for three consecutive days and pushed them back to other side.
Article 370 and 35(A) is in the Supreme Court. How will BJP react if special status would be restored?
Supreme Court is the highest institution of the country. The BJP will respect every decision of Supreme court.
NC, PDP, and others parties have expressed concern over functioning of Delimitation Commission. How do you see it?
The Delimitation Commission was due because of Re-Organization Act, 2019. Few political parties might feel they will lose their foothold in their respective areas as the Commission realigned some areas. But comprehensively people across J&K are glad over the move. Soon the Commission made the draft public, the Kashmiri’s beat drums, danced and distributed sweats. If someone alleges it as a conspiracy, he or she can.
When will assembly polls be held? Where does the BJP see itself in the election?
As far as assembly polls are concerned, BJP is always ready. We have a strong foothold in J&K now. The BJP will form the next government in J&K with thumping majority and will cross the magic figure of 50 plus seats. However it is on Election Commission of India (ECI) to fix the dates. The regional political parties have been rejected and people have pinned hope on BJP due to its people-friendly measures.
The Modi led BJP Government at centre has taken several measures to benefit the poor and weaker sections of the society who were ignored by previous governments. Central schemes have been implemented in J&K. The poor class of the society is availing monthly assistance benefit through bank accounts. Health schemes including Ayushman Bharat Golden Card and E-Sharam for poor laborers were rolled out. Schools, colleges and hospitals have been built.
Where from will be the next CM of J&K?
Obviously he will be from Jammu and undoubtedly from BJP.