New Delhi Government of India is likely to replace governor N N Vohra, days after he wrote a letter to Home Minister Rajnath Singh that that issue of Article 35-A, which empowers the state legislature to define permanent residents of the state, should not be dealt with till a popular government has been formed.
In-fact, the trigger for the Centre’s decision is disagreement over Article 35A of the Constitution, as per a report by NDTV.
The Centre’s decision not to defend the rule, which has been challenged in the Supreme Court, has wiped out the political lines and brought together all Kashmiris. The Supreme Court is expected to hear the case on August 6.
Jammu and Kashmir has been under Governor’s Rule since June 20, after the BJP ended its coalition government with Mehbooba Mufti’s People’s Democratic Party or PDP, saying it was “untenable” to continue because of security concerns and rising terrorism.
Vohra, 82, who has handled the charge of Jammu and Kashmir for more than a decade, will not be given another term, report quoting sources said. Search is on for a new face and one of the contenders is former home secretary and current Comptroller and Auditor General Rajiv Mehrishi, it said.
Centre and Vohra do not see eye to eye on the formation of a new government in Jammu and Kashmir. The Centre is keen on it, but Vohra, who had handled the state four times between governments, is not ready to comply.
A senior functionary of the home ministry said, “At this late stage he is not ready to accommodate certain decisions”.
The official said Vohra does not want to become another Jagmohan. In 1984, then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi had asked sitting governor BK Nehru to remove the Farooq Abdullah government. When he resisted, he was replaced by Jagmohan, who made it possible for GM Shah to become the new Chief Minister of the state.
Vohra was appointed by the UPA government and the Narendra Modi government had continued with him. Even though his term ended on June 28, the Centre decided to continue with him. The Amarnath Yatra was due to start at the time and the Governor was heading the board which was looking into elaborate security cover.
Sources said another name that’s being discussed is that of a former Army chief. “Either a senior bureaucrat or a former general would replace Vohra and no politician would be head of the state, as it would have international ramifications,” said a senior official.