'Some Forward Movement, But No Talks Yet', Says BJP on J&K Government Formation

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'Some Forward Movement, But No Talks Yet', Says BJP on J&K Government Formation

BJP leader Ram Madhav briefs media personnel in Delhi.

New Delhi:  BJP President Amit Shah today called on leaders from the state to hold consultations on government formation, nearly two weeks after results for the state elections were declared.

For the first time, the BJP has come on record to say it is considering a proposal from the People's Democratic Party or PDP.

The PDP had won the maximum number of seats - 28 - in the 87-member Assembly. The BJP, which recorded its best-ever performance in the state, came second with 25 seats.
BJP leaders are hopeful that the party will be part of the next government in the state.

After the meeting, BJP leader Ram Madhav told media personnel, "The views of state leaders were taken at this meeting. There is some initiative from the PDP. We have decided to take that forward. There is some movement forward but no structured talks have begun."

Earlier in the day, BJP's state unit President Jugal Kishore had said the party was in no hurry to form a government in the state and the focus was on forming a stable government.

The PDP has hinted that it could tie up with the BJP, with party leaders saying they wanted development and reconstruction in the state, which witnessed devastating floods in August. The party does not envisage that happening if it partners with rival regional party the National Conference or the Congress, said sources.   

But formal talks between the PDP and the BJP may be delayed due to the relentless ceasefire violations by Pakistan troops in the state. One of the conditions that the PDP has reportedly set for an alliance with the BJP is that the Centre resume talks with Pakistan.

There are other demands that the PDP has reportedly made; it wants the revocation of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act or AFSPA, talks with Kashmiri separatists and the promise that Article 370, which grants special status to the state, will not be revoked.

The BJP has had a differing stance on these issues for years.

The Jammu and Kashmir Governor has set January 19 as a deadline for government formation in the state.

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