Rebels sticks to their guns
Peoples Democratic Party Thursday said it had removed legislator Yasir Reshi as the party's district president for Bandipora, cracking the whip on leaders who had publicly criticised PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti.
In a statement, the PDP said Baramulla district president Irshad Ahmad Kar would look after the party affairs of Bandipora district for the time being.
Reshi, a member of the Legislative Council, was one of the PDP legislators who had revolted against the PDP leadership after the coalition government with the BJP collapsed last month.
He had accused Mehbooba of nepotism and called for an alternative to the “two-family” system of power in Jammu and Kashmir while referring to the Mufti and Abdullah families, who have mostly governed the State.
MLAs Imran Ansari, Abid Ansari and Abbas Wani, Yasir Reshi, Abdul Majeed Padroo and Javaid Baig had voiced displeasure against Mehbooba in public.
Ansari, who represents Srinagar's Zadibal constituency, was the first one to question Mehbooba’s leadership.
Reshi's sacking has come after 21 PDP legislators met Mehbooba over two days - on Saturday and Sunday - and pledged their support to her.
Meanwhile, the disgruntled PDP leaders have not regretted for criticizing the party leadership and instead sought alternative to the “family” rule.
Meanwhile, in a statement, Reshi said he was in complete conformity with the views expressed recently by “my esteemed colleagues to find an alternative to the traditional two-family system”.
Reshi said he did not say anything wrong against the party.
“There has to be a democracy in the party, which is my demand as senior leaders like Muzaffar Hussain Baig, Qazi Muhammad Afzal, and Dilawar Mir have been sidelined,” he said. “I said that family rule has to be ended in the party.”
Meanwhile, Imran Ansari said he was not invited by the party to meet Mehbooba.
“I didn’t receive any invitation, let them take whatever action they want,” Ansari said.
He said he had not decided whether to join any other party if he was sacked from the party.
Ansari, the former IT and Higher Education Minister had said, “PDP and the government had off late been reduced to a family opera where the brothers, the uncles, the aunties and other relatives would play protagonist and to continue with such a party was not only useless but a humiliation too.”
Abid Ansari said, “I have been invited several times but I did not go to meet Mehbooba. I will not go… Let them expel me, it won’t make any difference.”
He said talks were going on between rebel leaders to leave the party, and even those who met Mehbooba.
“If any leader met Mehbooba that does not mean he is with her,” he said.
He had claimed that 14 party legislators were mulling to leave PDP.
Among the 14 legislators who Abid claimed were leaving the party are Abdul Majeed Padroo, Mushtaq Shah, Abdul Haq Khan, Muhammad Ashraf Mir, Noor Mohammad, Mohammad Yousuf Bhat, Abdul Rahim Rather, Shahid Tantary, Chowdhary Qamar Ali, Javaid Baig, and Muhammad Abbas Wani. (With inputs from KNS)