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Mehbboba tries to keep flock together but most disgruntled PDP legislators stand ground

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Srinagar:  Most of the disgruntled PDP legislators stayed away from the meeting called by the party chief and former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti here.

While at least 21 legislators met Mehbooba soon after her return from New Delhi yesterday, the disgruntled leaders stay away.

Former minister Imran Ansari reiterated that Mehbooba indulges in nepotism and that “there is no question of going back on his stand” on her leadership.

“We have come out in public not for any concessions or personal gains. Our aim is to address the leadership problem,” he said.

At least six members of legislative assembly have raised a banner of revolt against the party leadership, and it excludes MLC from north Kashmir’s Bandipora Yasir Reshi who has sought an “alternative to the traditional family rule” in Jammu and Kashmir.

In a statement, Reshi said that he was in complete conformity with the views expressed recently by “my esteemed colleagues, to find an alternative to the traditional two-family system.”

“The only way out is to give a chance to a new leadership. The State needs a respite from the tried, tested and failed two-family power sharing model,” he said in his statement.

The first to speak against Mehbooba within the party after the break-up with the BJP was the MLA from Zadibal, Srinagar, Abid Ansari. A day later former minister and his nephew Imran Ansari accused his party boss of only “promoting her family interests” and also held her “responsible for the coalition break-up.” Another MLA from Tangmarg Mohammad Abbas also came in support of Ansari.

Another lawmaker and former minister of state Abdul Majeed Padroo claimed Mehbooba Mufti never consulted legislators or party leaders. “In every home, consultations are held. But Mehbooba ji never thought it proper to meet legislators,” Padroo said, adding that a government should be formed so that people’s day-to-day difficulties could be addressed.

The PDP legislator from Baramulla in north Kashmir, Javaid Baig, said he was never “counted in the party” by Mehbooba Mufti and the party.

“I was treated as an MLA… MLAs have been dishonoured and we came second to the people who were imported from outside,” Baig said. “Those who lost elections even when there was a tsunami in the PDP’s favour were rewarded by the party and were running the government.”

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