Other States

PDP patron Muzaffar Hussain Baig’s utterances unsettle party

Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) patron Muzaffar Hussian Baig’s recent utterances have left the party unsettled, with other party leaders convening meetings in Jammu to pledge support to “the vision of late Mufti Muhammad Sayeed on the political future of J&K” and “back the leadership of incarcerated president Mehbooba Mufti”.

PDP sources said Mr. Baig’s move to pass a resolution at the party headquarters in Jammu was scuttled by the local leaders on January 30. Mr. Baig was planning on passing a resolution calling for the restoration of Statehood and seeking Constitutional guarantees on land and jobs as under Article 371. However, no senior PDP leader in Jammu agreed to attend the meeting.

Sources said former deputy Chief Minister Mr. Baig, who is insisting on a joint party resolution, intends to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the coming weeks with these fresh demands, even as PDP president Mehbooba Mufti remains behind the bars.

‘Peace with dignity’

Unsettled by Mr. Baig’s move to refashion the party’s narrative, a Jammu-based PDP spokesman told The Hindu that in a meeting held on Saturday, the party resolved to back party founder late Mufti Muhammad Sayeed’s policy of “peace with dignity”.

“The participants expressed full confidence in the leadership of the PDP president Ms. Mehbooba Mufti, resolving in unison to support her each and every endeavour aimed at getting the people out of the cycle of uncertainty and steer the region towards peaceful and tranquil times,” he said.

The PDP leaders’ pledge came just a day after Mr. Baig told The Hindu that the party’s focus will not be self-rule or restoration of Article 370 but “Statehood and Constitutional guarantees on land and jobs” after the Centre’s August 5 decision to revoke J&K’s special status.

‘Individual opinions’

“Dissent and disagreement is a part of democratic spaces. However, individual opinion cannot represent the ideology of the party. Any political stand on J&K post August 5 has to be taken by the party’s Political Affairs Committee (PAC). Till the party president is released and the PAC holds a meeting, all leaders are entitled to have individual opinions,” former legislator and PDP leader Firdous Tak told The Hindu.

Earlier, in January, the PDP expelled ex-legislator Javaid Hussain Baig, nephew of the senior Mr. Baig, for being “part of the parleys that go against the interests of J&K, the official position and core beliefs of the party”. Mr. Javaid Baig had joined hands with ex-PDP leader Altaf Bukhari, who also advocates Article 371-like Constitutional guarantees from the Centre.

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Printable version | Jan 29, 2022 2:06:38 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/pdp-patron-muzaffar-hussain-baigs-utterances-unsettle-party/article30727616.ece

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