Press Trust of india

Govt ready to hold assembly polls in J-K: Rajnath Singh

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Says Centre committed to democratic process

New Delhi, Dec 28:  As the Opposition slammed the decision to impose President's Rule in Jammu and Kashmir, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday told Lok Sabha that no party was in a position to form government in the state and asserted that the Centre is "ready" for assembly election there.

He also rejected claims of some opposition parties that the BJP was propping up a regional party to form government, saying if his party had such an intention, it would have done so within six months of the Governor's Rule.

"The government doesn't conduct elections but the government is ready for the election. It is the responsibility of the Election Commission to hold elections... we are totally committed to democratic process," he told the lower house while replying to the Statutory Resolution on imposition of President's Rule in Jammu and Kashmir.

The resolution was adopted by a voice vote.

The Minister assured the House that security requirement of the Election Commission will be met for free and fair Assembly election in the state.

Soon after imposition of the Governor's Rule in June, Singh said, the Governor's report of June 19 to the President indicated that no party or coalition of parties in the state was in a position to form government.

So the Governor's rule was imposed in these conditions, he said, adding the Assembly was not dissolved for six months in anticipation of formation of government in the state.

However, no party staked claim to form government so the Governor had to recommend President's Rule, he said.

As Singh was speaking, National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah interjected, saying, "The PDP approached our party and we agreed to provide them support along with the Congress. But the irony was that the fax and phone of the Governor was not working!"

Abdullah asserted that the Governor's House is not the place to prove majority and it is the floor of Assembly where the government of the day has to prove its strength.

The Home Minister said that no party was in a position to form government in the state even a day before December 19 when the Governor had to take decision about dissolution of the Assembly.

"Our intentions should never be doubted on Jammu and Kashmir. If the BJP had to form the government, we could have done it within six months of the Governor's Rule," he said.

The BJP could have done it by talking to other parties but it did not do so till the end, he added.

As far as the situation in Jammu and Kashmir is concerned, he said, it is an old problem.

The government is trying to improve the conditions by taking various steps like creating more employment for the people of the state.

Even grassroots democracy is being strengthened, he said, noting that local bodies elections have been held after a gap of many years.

Elected representatives of the local bodies are being given administrative and financial powers, he added.

Omar welcomes Rajnath's statement polls

Srinagar, Dec 28: National Conference (NC) vice-president Omar Abdullah Friday welcomed Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh's statement in the Lok Sabha that the Centre was ready for Assembly polls in Jammu and Kashmir.

"An important assurance on the floor of the house in the Lok Sabha. This should put to rest the motivated speculation that elections in the state will happen only after the general elections," Abdullah wrote on Twitter.

Nehruvian blunder responsible for Kashmir crisis: Jitendra Singh

New Delhi, Dec 28: Union Minister Jitendra Singh Friday said the current situation in Jammu and Kashmir is an outcome of a series of "blunders" by successive Congress governments in the state starting with the "Nehruvian blunder".

Participating in the debate on statutory resolution for proclamation of President's Rule in the state, Singh said everyone feels the pain of the people of the state.

Singh blamed the Congress and first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru for the current crisis in the state and said successive governments in the state committed blunders.

"The current situation in Kashmir is an outcome of a series of blunders of successive Congress governments in the state starting with the Nehruvian blunder," he said.

Singh, who himself hails from Jammu, said the BJP formed an alliance with the PDP, as it was dictated by the people's mandate.

"It was not an unnatural marriage between parties; infact it was like a typical Indian marriage where two parties with different ideologies came together for the sake of democracy," he said, adding the BJP walked away from the alliance even when three years of the tenure were pending.

"We formed an alliance as it was dictated by the people's mandate and walked away from the alliance on the will of the people," he claimed.

Taking on the PDP and NC over their proposed alliance to form a government in the state, Singh said “those who don't see eye to eye came together to keep the BJP out of power”.

Without naming any party, he said "competitive separatism" is going on in the state and those who are out of power are speaking in "separatist jargon".

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