Me­hbooba faces more re­bel­lion as Drabu quits

As re­ports say Drabu may join Sa­j­jad Lone-led Third Front, Mufti fears more of her PDP lead­ers will fol­low suit.

The Sunday Guardian - - Nation -

Peo­ple’s Demo­cratic Party (PDP) pres­i­dent Me­hbooba Mufti is fac­ing the pos­si­bil­ity of a split in the party as Haseeb Drabu, for­mer Fi­nance Min­is­ter and the ar­chi­tect of the al­liance with BJP, re­signed. Ear­lier, PDP’s Bara­mulla MP, Muzaf­far Hus­sain Beigh had said that he would join Sa­j­jad Gani Lone’s Third Front. Me­hbooba Mufti had to go to his res­i­dence to iron out the dif­fer­ences, but the fear re­mains that he will also leave.

Ac­cord­ing to in­sid­ers, the PDP chief has been ac­cus­ing Drabu and Dr Amitabh Mat­too of hav­ing deep con­nec­tions with the in­tel­li­gence set-up and for ma­te­ri­al­is­ing the PDP-BJP al­liance with her late fa­ther, de­spite her op­po­si­tion to the move.

Me­hbooba has been cry­ing foul against the cen­tral lead­er­ship of BJP for en­gi­neer­ing de­fec­tions in her party. She has been main­tain­ing that BJP has been try­ing to make her weak in Kash­mir as she re­fused to budge on any of their de­mands in­clud­ing bring­ing Kash­miri Pan­dits back to Kash­mir.

There are al­ready re­ports in the me­dia that Drabu is go­ing to join the Lone-led front. Me­hbooba now fears that more of her party mem­bers will fol­low suit and they have a “deep un­der­stand­ing” with BJP at the cen­tral level.

A wor­ried Me­hbooba is try­ing her best to bring back all rebels and her meet­ing with Beigh was the first step in this di­rec­tion.

When she sacked Drabu as Fi­nance Min­is­ter over his re­mark that “Kash­mir is not a po­lit­i­cal is­sue”, she had not ac­cepted his res­ig­na­tion from the party.

Lone is fo­cus­ing on North Kash­mir and wants to bring into his fold all the prom­i­nent po­lit­i­cal ac­tivists so as to emerge as a sig­nal-largest party in the Val­ley. He is work­ing hard in his home district of Kup­wara in this di­rec­tion and got a shot in the arm with the join­ing of Im­ran Raza An­sari, who has a huge in­flu­ence in Bara­mulla district.

Although Drabu in a tweet has re­jected the ru­mours that he is go­ing to join the Third Front, po­lit­i­cal ob­servers feel that he may take more time to see how the po­lit­i­cal land­scape of Kash­mir takes shape be­fore the an­nounce­ment of Assem­bly and par­lia­men­tary polls in Jammu and Kash­mir.

Tel­ugu De­sam Party chief N. Chan­drababu Naidu will de­cide on align­ing with the Congress in Andhra Pradesh for the com­ing Assem­bly and Lok Sabha elec­tions next sum­mer, only af­ter 11 De­cem­ber, when re­sults of the five states, in­clud­ing Te­lan­gana, are an­nounced. It is likely that Naidu will go with Congress if only their Ma­haku­tami (Peo­ple’s Front) fares well in Te­lan­gana.

Naidu said this much when asked at a me­dia con­fer­ence in Hyderabad on 5 De­cem­ber about whether he would be go­ing for a pre-poll al­liance with Congress in Andhra too. “We will see that later,” was the terse re­ply from Naidu who was flanked by Congress pres­i­dent Rahul Gandhi at the me­dia con­fer­ence meant to wrap up the TRS supremo and Te­lan­gana care­taker Chief Min­is­ter K. Chan­drasekhar Rao’s (KCR’s) only son and IT Min­is­ter K.T. Rama Rao (KTR) will emerge taller if his party wins a se­cond term af­ter the Assem­bly elec­tion re­sults are an­nounced on 11 De­cem­ber. Al­ready, both KCR and KTR have claimed vic­tory at the end of polling on Fri­day.

Some in the party are pre­dict­ing KTR’s el­e­va­tion as its work­ing pres­i­dent, while oth­ers ex­pect him to take over from his fa­ther as the CM some­time mid­way dur­ing the term of five years. As he al­ready holds key port­fo­lios of In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy, In­dus­tries and Mu­nic­i­pal Ad­min­is­tra­tion, there can­not be a greater role in the Cab­i­net, in­clud­ing that of a Deputy Chief Min­is­ter, say party se­niors.

Ac­cord­ing to these lead­ers, KCR will play a greater role in na­tional pol­i­tics af­ter the

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