BJP says it deserves equal and important portfolios

As the PDP-BJP combine is all set to stake claim to form a coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir, BJP Friday asserted that being the “big brother” and with more number of MLAs, it deserves “equal and important portfolios”.

“We have 28 members now. We have Peoples Conference of Sajjad Lone as our pre-poll alliance partner and of course we are of the opinion that being the big brother, we should be given the required number, equal share in the government,” BJP MLA from Nowshera, Ravinder Raina who was part of the crucial BJP meeting, said.

On the meeting that saw the appointment of Nirmal Singh as the leader of Party Legislature, he said crucial issues concerning the state were debated upon.

“Our senior leaders held deliberations and discussions because there are so many important issues in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh and we discussed how to run the government, what should be our priority in the days to come and all the discussion took place in a very healthy and good atmosphere”, he said.

The PDP has 27 members in the 87-member Assembly.

When asked whether BJP would insist for “significant portfolios”, Raina said, “There is no doubt as the portfolios are concerned. The important thing is as we have equal number of legislators, we are the largest party in Jammu and Ladakh region. Of course there are discussions and deliberation and these are part and parcel of formation of the government.”

He, however, said the issue of portfolios would not create a deadlock in the formation of the government.

“These are not the things which are to be taken for creating deadlock and stalemate. These are very important issues which need to be addressed,” he insisted.

“BJP is the largest party in Jammu and Kashmir. I think it is our birth right that we have the equal share in the formation of the government. Our senior leaders and state leaders are in touch with the leaders of the PDP,” he said.

Raina said further discussions will be held between the coalition partners tomorrow.

“I think to run a family, an organisation, a party, a coalition, one must have trust on another partner and —to maintain the sanctity to run the coalition and there is no doubt we should have all important share in the new government of Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.

When asked about the response of its coalition partner over its demand of equal and significant portfolios, he said, “The response from our coalition partner is very good and they are having a discussion with us in a very good atmosphere and they have full regard and respect for our sentiments.”