J&K headed for prolonged Governor’s rule as fresh polls unlikely soon

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Senior home ministry officials said that they felt Rajnath had so far been unaware of the impending decision. He, however, congratulated the BJP for pulling out of the PDP-led government in Jammu and Kashmir, saying "it's better late than never".

The state's governor, a figurehead who is appointed by New Delhi, will rule the disputed region until fresh elections are held or a new coalition is formed.

BJP leader and Deputy Chief Minister Kavinder Gupta told reporters in Delhi that he and his ministerial colleagues have submitted their resignations to the governor as well as to the chief minister. She ruled out forming any alliance or bidding for power.

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The PDP has long demanded the removal of a draconian law that gives Indian forces sweeping powers to search, enter property and shoot on sight. But Jammu and Kashmir has its own separate Constitution that provides for an intermediary statutory layer in the state.

"If the BJP took this decision to avoid answering these issues in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, I think it is a political decision", he said.

On Ramzan ceasefire initiative, Madhav said, "We had suspended operations in the Valley because of the importance of Ramzan for the people in Jammu and Kashmir".

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The BJP said the three-year alliance had become "untenable" in the wake of increasing violence.

"Governor N.N. Vohra may look for an alternative coalition but that is almost impossible unless the People's Democratic Party (PDP) breaks from within to support the other two opposition parties", Valley-based political science professor Noor Ahmed Baba told ThePrint. If not now, the split would have happened six months later but the situation presented the BJP the ideal opportunity to pull out of the alliance. "Any political party will be concerned with this kind of situation", a top BJP leader said on the condition of anonymity. "It took us several months to chalk out the agenda of alliance which was aimed at reconciliation and dialogue in Jammu and Kashmir", she said.

Meanwhile, sources in PDP said they wanted Government of India (GoI) to extend the Ramadan ceasefire but it was not done. "Since Modi and Shah are the two most important people in the government, the NSA was doing his duty. Unfortunately, there was no positive response from the other side even on ceasefire", Ms. Mufti said. "What I have been talking about all this while, only our healing touch policy will work in Jammu and Kashmir". "You know that an interlocutor was also appointed for addressing grievances of the people in Jammu and Kashmir". The BJP leader said the daylight murder of journalist Shujaat Bukhari in Srinagar was an indicator of the deteriorating security situation and the extent of radicalisation. "We defended Article 35-A and Article 370 in the court", she said. It was extremely unpopular when it accepted to set up a coalition government with the BJP.

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Over 800 terror incidents have been reported in J&K over the three years ending 2017-up from 208 in 2015 to 342 in 2017-according to an IndiaSpend analysis of government data.

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