PM Modi Will Attend Oath Ceremony, Says Jammu and Kashmir's Chief Minister-to-be Mufti Sayeed

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PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed meets PM Modi in New Delhi on Friday

New Delhi: 

Sunday is on. Mufti Mohammad Sayeed of the People's Democratic Party, who is set to be the next chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, said this morning that Prime Minister  Narendra Modi will attend the oath ceremony of the new government in the state on that day.

The Mufti met Prime Minister Narendra Modi this morning to finalise details of the BJP-PDP government. Sources said a 25-member cabinet will be sworn in on Sunday; the BJP is expected to get the deputy chief minister's post.

"I have invited the PM for swearing-in ceremony on 1st of March, he said he will be attending the ceremony," said the Mufti, after a meeting with PM Modi this morning. The 79-year-old Kashmiri leader described as a "battle of nerves" negotiations with the BJP to form a government together in Jammu and Kashmir.

In photographs of this morning's meeting, Mr Sayeed and PM Modi smiled and hugged.

Mr Sayeed came to Delhi yesterday after a reported last-minute hitch in talks was papered over. "I had a fruitful meeting with the PM today, had discussions on many issues. The PM of India has mandate of people of the nation today, it is an opportunity for both of us," the PDP leader said.  

Both the BJP and the PDP,  ideological opposites, have refused to officially share details of the common minimum programme or CMP on the basis of which they will to govern the state. It took them two months after elections results were announced in J&K to bridge their political and ideological differences on issues like Article 370, which gives special constitutional status to the state, and the Armed Forces' Special Powers' Act or AFPSA, which gives the army the authority to make arrests without warrants.

As the PM met the Mufti, the BJP's Ram Madhav tweeted, "All issues relating to CMP are resolved paving d way for formation of d PDP-BJP alliance govt in J&K. PDP supremo Mufti meeting PM Modi now...Urge all to have patience until CMP is released in a few days rather than speculating abt compromises n questioning integrity of either side."

In the December elections, J&K voted in a hung assembly. The PDP was the single largest party with 28 MLAs; the BJP was number 2 with 25. Together they have an easy majority in the 87-member assembly.

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