Jammu, June 20: The deteriorating law-and-order situation in Jammu and Kashmir was the main reason for the BJP to pull out from the government and pave way for Governor’s rule to ensure restoration of peace and normalcy, state party chief Ravinder Raina Wednesday said.
He said the decision was not abrupt and was taken after three month long deliberations in the larger interest of the nation.
“The main issue was the fast deteriorating law and order situation in the valley. The only alternative was governor’s rule because there will be a single line administration,” he said. “There might be political compulsions for parties in handling such a tough situation but during governor’s rule, we are of the opinion that anti-terror operations and operations against anti-social elements will easily be carried out,” he added.
Raina, who was flanked by several top BJP leaders including former deputy chief minister Kavinder Gupta, said restoration of law and order is the need of the hour. He said the army was given a free hand in the last three years which resulted in the elimination of 619 terrorists. As many as 23 Pakistani terrorists were also neutralised by the forces during the Ramzan ceasefire, which was part of many initiatives taken to restore peace in Kashmir, he added.
He denied any politics behind the decision to pull out from the government and said it was done in the interest of the nation. Raina said the government was not able to carry out the anti-terror operations as the BJP wanted. “We wanted terrorist- free Kashmir to allow people to live their lives with honour and dignity and without any fear,” he said.
Referring to the suspension of operations during Ramzan, he said Pakistan responded to the initiative by activating the entire International border and parts of Line of Control on the same day the Centre announced it.
“Infiltrators were pushed and innocents were targeted including a renowned journalist who was killed in the broad daylight. The Jammu bus stand was attacked with a grenade while army jawan sepoy Choudhary Aurangzeb was shot dead after abduction,” he said defending the BJP’s decision.
He also referred to the killing of police officers including DSP Mohammad Ayoub Pandit, who was lynched by a mob at Jamia Masjid in Srinagar last year. Asked whether the army will be given free hand to deal with the situation under governor’s rule, Raina said the army always enjoyed free hand and is fully capable to deal with any challenge.
He also denied that the BJP was not waiting for any opportunity. “We believe nation stands first and tricolour is our priority. The BJP is not for power. Had it been our aim, there were still three more years left to govern the state,” he said.