A Government in Limbo

The present coalition PDP-BJP Govt has been in office for more than four months. The govt formation itself took a few months, to, what seemed to iron out the differences between the two alliance partners. Given the meticulous nature of deliberations between the two sides, the general feeling in the State was that the two parties were serious in delivering a good and working coalition Govt. Of course there was skepticism and cynicism about the chances of this coalition Govt, but most people were willing to give this Govt a chance to deliver on its electoral promises, most of which focused on addressing the day to day needs of the common man. But it seems the faith and optimism that people had shown in this coali-tion is slowly fizzling out, given that the Govt has hardly delivered on any of its promises.

The setting up of IIMs and IITs in the state is yet to begin, with the regional differences between the two regions again creeping up. The setting up of AIIMS in the valley, announced by the central Govt has also hit turbulence. The BJP legislators from Jammu province have shown their strong reservations against setting up an AIIMS in the Kashmir valley and hence now there is a proposal to set up AIIMs separately in both the regions. These developments strongly reinforce a feeling among the people in the valley that they are being short changed, given that the major alliance partner PDP has won majority of its seats from the Kashmir region and holds the post of CM and some other ministries.  The BJP legislators have been vocal and unequivocal in their demands, which centre on development within the Jammu region, while the PDP has watched these developments, almost silently from the sidelines. It seems the PDP has lost the plot so early after assuming office. PDP has failed miserably on its electoral promises. One of its biggest election promises was that it would have the central Govt rework the terms of agreement with NHPC and get a bigger share from the revenues. This proposal was refused by the central Govt. In fact the delegation sent by the State Govt to renegotiate these terms with the power ministry in Delhi was rebuked by the Central Power Minister. That proposal is now in the cold storage and possibly dead.

In terms of bringing relief to the flood victims in the valley, PDP led Govt has not done enough to redress their grievances. Neither has the Govt declared any new policy in dealing with the environmental disaster that the valley has witnessed over the years. On the eco-nomic front, the Govt coffers are almost empty with bills due to contractors pending and salaries of thousands of teachers not paid for the last five months. The economist finance Minster of the State hasn’t been able to address the economic mess that the State of J and K is facing. In the second week of July, the State finance minister, announced, with much fanfare a proposed Rs 70000 crore economic package for the State, which he claimed was approved by the Central Govt and would be announced soon by the central Govt. Since then, the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has already visited the Stat, but the economic package still remains elusive. 

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