Congress willing to support PDP govt

Congress willing to support PDP govt

After finishing a dismal fourth in Jammu and Kashmir, the Congress has pinned its hopes of continuing in power on the possibility of PDP seeking its support to form a coalition government in the state.

Senior Congress leaders said the party was ready to support the PDP which has emerged as the single largest party in Jammu and Kashmir winning 28 seats, but way short of majority mark of 44 seats in the 87-member Assembly.

“It is up to Mufti Mohammad Sayeed and Mehbooba Mufti to decide in the interests of the state and whether they want to go with the communal forces of the BJP or secular forces,” senior Congress leader and former chief minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said.
Azad, however, underscored that it was for the PDP to decide and make the first move.

“The PDP has a mature leadership; they know what is good and bad,” was the refrain of Azad, who was the chief campaigner of the Congress party in the state. Congress has emerged victorious on 12 seats, five less than what it had won in 2008.

The Congress sought solace in the fact the poll outcome was contrary to the exit polls which had predicted a wipeout of the party. The better-than-expected performance was credited to the “strong leaders” in the state such as Azad and Saifuddin Soz.

The Congress had formed the government with the PDP in 2002 with Mufti Mohammad Sayeed and Azad becoming chief ministers for three years each. The Congress and the PDP parted ways following differences over the Amarnath land transfer controversy.

After the 2008 elections, Congress supported the National Conference’s Omar Abdullah for a full six-year term as chief minister. However, the relations with the Congress deteriorated towards the end of the government’s tenure and the two parties contested the elections separately.

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