The expelled BJP leader Prof Hari Om on Sunday claimed that he stood completely vindicated and asked the BJP central leadership to expel all those BJP ministers and MLAs from the party for six years, who on Saturday met with Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed and lodged a complaint with him that the coalition government had rendered them powerless and ineffective, neglected Jammu province and perpetrated injustice after injustice on the people of this province.
“If the party considered my pro-Jammu and pro-India stand an anti-party activities and expelled from the party on that count, it cannot apply a different yardstick to the BJP ministers and MLAs who spoke my language and registered their protest against the discriminatory policies of the PDP-led coalition government,” said Prof Hari Om, adding that the BJP high command will be considered a sinner in case it didn’t take action against the “erring” BJP ministers and MLAs.
The statement of Prof Hari Om came a day after half a dozen BJP ministers, including Deputy Chief Minister, besides many MLAs, met with the Chief Minister to highlight the problems they and the people of Jammu province faced after the formation of the PDP-BJP coalition government in the state.
Prof Hari Om said in a written statement that he as political advisor to the state BJP president and senior leader of the party wrote not one but at least six letters to the Prime Minister, BJP national president and J&K BJP president warning them that the alliance of the BJP with the PDP had harmed Jammu province and its people and that the disgusted, humiliated and badly let down people of Jammu province had deserted the BJP saying “it surrendered everything to Kashmir in lieu of nothing,” but with no result.
He also said that he issued many statements after the BJP became part of the government in J&K in order to attract the attention of the state BJP leadership and party high command to the grievances of the people of Jammu province, but the local BJP leadership and party high command didn’t pay any heed. He further added that his statements were coupled with an unambiguous warning that the BJP had not only lost its hold over its constituency in Jammu but it would also stand totally discredited if they didn’t assert their authority and obtain for Jammu province an equal share with Kashmir in all spheres, including the all-powerful State Cabinet, considering the fact that the BJP and the PDP had equal number of MLAs.
The expelled BJP leader further claimed that he repeatedly drew the attention of the party high command to what the people of Jammu province in general and enlightened civil society members in particular thought about the agenda of alliance as well as the little or no say of the BJP ministers in the government, but the high command took no cognizance.
BJP ministers and MLAs on Saturday took the line Prof Hari Om took after the formation of the coalition government and lodged a strong complaint with the Chief Minister that they were there in the government only in name, that the PDP ministers invariably bypassed the BJP ministers and took certain decisions regarding their departments without taking them into confidence and regretted that all the important departments and portfolios were with the PDP. They also complained that the Ministers of State from the BJP had no power whatsoever and that while developmental activities in the Kashmir Valley, including construction, blacktopping and widening of roads, were in full swing, no such developmental activities had been undertaken in Jammu province, including Jammu city, where the roads were in a dilapidated conditions and that the PDP ministers, who held some vital portfolios, imposed 12.5 per cent Jaziya tax on the holy Shri Mata Vaishno Devi pilgrimage without taking the Cabinet into confidence.
Prof Hari Om expressed hope that the BJP high command will do justice to him by applying the yardstick it applied to him.