BJP's Popularity in JK Prompts Congress to Have Rethink on Alliance with NC
SRINAGAR: The growing popularity of BJP in Jammu has prompted J&K Congress to have a re-think on forging pre-poll or tactical alliance with its ally National Conference for the forthcoming Assembly elections in the State.
A senior Congress leader, pleading anonymity, said party leaders are worried over the in-roads made by BJP in Jammu province.
BJP had won two Lok Sabha seats from Jammu province and another from Ladakh.
“There is a strong BJP wave in most parts of Jammu and Modi government may announce some special package for Jammu and Kashmir to woo more people towards the party ahead of the polls,” the Congress leader said.
He said the BJP has also made inroads in the areas considered to be strongholds of the Congress.
“If NC and Congress don’t forge pre-poll alliance or any arrangement for the Assembly polls, both parties may be routed in the elections,” the Congress leader said.
BJP has 11 members in the 87-member J&K Assembly. In the recently held parliamentary elections in the State, BJP was ahead in 29 Assembly segments in Jammu province and Ladakh.
He said the leadership of both parties is worried over the growing popularity of BJP and both camps are holding deliberations within their parties over the pros and cons of forging alliance.
The Congress leader said the State party leaders have already briefed Congress chairperson Sonia Gandhi about the views and aspirations of the workers and leaders.
Sources said Sonia had a meeting with J&K Chief Minister and NC working president, Omar Abdullah in Delhi Sunday.
NC has also not closed the option of forging alliance with Congress.
Insiders in Congress said Sonia is opposed to going it alone in J&K Assembly polls. “She wants to continue the alliance with NC to keep BJP away,” they said adding Congress high command feels that if there is no alliance, party would fare badly in the State Assembly polls.
They said either Congress will forge pre-poll alliance or go for “tactical alliance” with NC. “If the pre-poll alliance fails to materialize, then the two parties may go for “tactical alliance” for some seats in Jammu and Kashmir”.
J&K Pradesh Congress chief and MP Saif-ud-din Soz said Congress is yet to take final call over forging pre-poll alliance with NC.
He said the deliberations are continuing at various levels and party high command has not taken any decision in this regard so far.