Faced with threat of strains in its alliance with the PDP getting widened following sacking of Finance Minister Haseeb Drabu by Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, the BJP leadership has summoned its senior men in Jammu and Kashmir to Delhi to discuss the situation.
Rasheed accused that NC and PDP of making an issue out of Drabu's statement without being honest to the political dispute itself.
The ousted leader is reported to have said that Kashmir was not a political but a social issue.
"Those who heard my speech or care to read it dispassionately will know that when I was talking about our aspirations and the efforts at self-discovery, I was in fact nuancing the very stand of the People's Democratic Party before a very select audience", he asserted.
Explaining the sequence of events of the past few days, Drabu said that after delivering a speech at New Delhi, he arrived in J&K on March 11 and saw a statement of PDP vice-president Sartaj Madni, asking him to retract the remark he had reportedly made in the Capital.
An economist-turned- Business Standard journalist-turned banker (he was chairman of J&K Bank for a long time in mid-2000s) who then turned politician, Drabu is adept at finding his way around the power-circles of Delhi; the powers that many say control the levers of power in J&K. But Drabu did promise that he'd continue working for his constituency Rajpora in the Pulwama district.
He said to his best understanding and knowledge, whatever he had stated in his speech did not go against the articulated and stated political position of PDP. "It is, in fact, very much a part of the PDP's political philosophy and agenda of reconciliation", he said. Meanwhile, Mr. Drabu has ruled out quitting the party. There is no scope to call J&K a political issue if United Nations resolutions are not taken into consideration unless all the three parties do agree to some resolution outside United Nations resolutions.
He is the first senior leader removed from the cabinet and the request by Mufti was accepted by the governor N.N. Vohra.
He also recalled how the terms and conditions based on which the current PDP-BJP alliance was formed, the Agenda of alliance, was drafted under his guidance. "Every single meeting, discussion and negotiations were done with the knowledge and consent of the patron and the president".