The Daily Fix

The Daily Fix: As BJP pulls out of the J&K government, the People’s Democratic Party stares at ruin

Everything you need to know for the day (and a little more).

The Big Story: Fall of the PDP

As the Bharatiya Janata Party pulls out of the ruling alliance in Jammu and Kashmir and government falls, former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and her People’s Democratic Party are left to survey the ruin. In spite of the alliance being in trouble for a while, it is widely believed that the People’s Democratic Party was taken by surprise by the BJP’s manoeuvre. Soon after Mufti resigned from the post of chief minister, she claimed in a chaotic press conference that the alliance with the BJP had not been for power, that a “muscular security policy” was not acceptable to Kashmir and that is why the coalition could not continue. Both claims were greeted with scepticism. The People’s Democratic Party has emerged from three years in government with a complete loss of credibility.

Mufti and her party have been blamed on several counts. First, for tying up with the BJP after campaigning with the promise that it would keep the saffron brigade out of the Kashmir Valley. In the agenda of alliance that followed, the party was seen to compromise on some of its defining principles: the idea of “self-rule”, which gestured towards Kashmiri nationalist ambitions and the removal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act from Kashmir, among others. Second, in the years that followed, the government led by Mufti presided over brutal state crackdowns on both civilians and militants. While hundreds have been killed in the last two years, thousands of protestors have been maimed or blinded by shotguns, many others languish in detention under draconian laws such as the Public Safety Act. Mufti protested helplessness in the face of a determined Centre that had chosen an iron fist policy and assumed an almost constant attitude of supplication. It did not convince many in the Valley. Over the last few years, the People’s Democratic Party’s old slogan of a “healing touch” has been invoked over and over again with grisly irony. Third, many ask why Mufti did not resign earlier if the BJP’s policies were so distasteful to her and if she could not stop them. To hold on to power at any cost, seems to be the answer that is usually offered.

Now Mufti will be remembered as the chief minister whose tenure led the Valley into a downward spiral of violence and militancy. Her party’s old bases in South Kashmir are destroyed as those very districts have become the epicentre of militancy. While voters turned away from the party, workers at the ground level have been killed or resigned before they were targeted. The Anantnag Lok Sabha seat, empty ever since Mufti vacated it to become chief minister, still lies empty as elections to it could not be held after widespread violence broke out last year. As disillusionment with government translates into a larger rejection of electoral politics itself, holding polls in the Valley has become a perilous exercise. Which means that the state may be entering an indefinite spell of governor’s rule. Can the People’s Democratic Party piece itself together after this collapse? Over the last two decades, the National Conference and the People’s Democratic Party, the two Kashmir-based parties, have alternated in power. In the brutal political cycles of the Valley, a party may take a hit after a turn in power, only to reemerge stronger in time for the next elections. But even by the Valley’s standards, Mufti and her colleagues face a daunting task. Rebuilding the People’s Democratic Party may need a miracle.

The Big Scroll

Parvaiz Bukhari writes about the “most powerless J&K chief minister”.

https://scroll.in/subscribe?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=articleinline
https://scroll.in/subscribe?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=articleinline

Punditry

  1. In the Indian Express, Huma Hasan argues that those “rescuing” Muslim women are also undermining their agency.
  2. In the Hindu, Pallavi Saxena and Nayantara Raja urge the formulation of an asylsum policy to accommodate those seeking refuge in India.
  3. In the Telegraph, Prabhat Patnaik on why ignoring the dynamics of peasant assertion in electoral outcomes is a mistake.

Giggles

Don’t miss...

Blake Smith on an Indian prince with a memorial in Florence:

  Observers with a taste for romantic poetry might have thought, as the November breezes whirled smoke from Rajaram’s pyre, of Percy Shelley. The English poet, fascinated by Tuscany, had visited the Cascine on such a day in late 1819. The gloomy weather inspired his Ode to the West Wind, which imagines the “breath of autumn’s being” scattering leaves “like ghosts...pest-stricken multitudes”. Even in this most beautiful of cities, in its largest and calmest park, a cold wind could carry whispers of mortality, to poets and to princes alike.  

Support our journalism by subscribing to Scroll+ here. We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

Get ready for an 80-hour shopping marathon

Here are some tips that’ll help you take the lead.

Starting 16th July at 4:00pm, Flipkart will be hosting its Big Shopping Days sale over 3 days (till 19th July). This mega online shopping event is just what a sale should be, promising not just the best discounts but also buying options such as no cost EMIs, buyback guarantee and product exchanges. A shopping festival this big, packed with deals that you can’t get yourself to refuse, can get overwhelming. So don’t worry, we’re here to tell you why Big Shopping Days is the only sale you need, with these helpful hints and highlights.

Samsung Galaxy On Nxt (64 GB)

A host of entertainment options, latest security features and a 13 MP rear camera that has mastered light come packed in sleek metal unibody. The sale offers an almost 40% discount on the price. Moreover, there is a buyback guarantee which is part of the deal.

Original price: Rs. 17,900

Big Shopping Days price: Rs. 10,900

Samsung 32 inches HD Ready LED TV

Another blockbuster deal in the sale catalogue is this audio and visual delight. Apart from a discount of 41%, the deal promises no-cost EMIs up to 12 months.

Original price: Rs. 28,890

Big Shopping Days price: Rs. 10,900

Intel Core I3 equipped laptops

These laptops will make a thoughtful college send-off gift or any gift for that matter. Since the festive season is around the corner, you might want to make use of this sale to bring your A-game to family festivities.

Original price: Rs. 25,590

Big Shopping Days price: Rs. 21,900

Fashion

If you’ve been planning a mid-year wardrobe refresh, Flipkart’s got you covered. The Big Shopping Days offer 50% to 80% discount on men’s clothing. You can pick from a host of top brands including Adidas and Wrangler.

With more sale hours, Flipkart’s Big Shopping Days sale ensures we can spend more time perusing and purchasing these deals. Apart from the above-mentioned products, you can expect up to 80% discount across categories including mobiles, appliances, electronics, fashion, beauty, home and furniture.

Features like blockbuster deals that are refreshed every 8 hours along with a price crash, rush hour deals from 4-6 PM on the starting day and first-time product discounts makes this a shopping experience that will have you exclaiming “Sale ho to aisi! (warna na ho)”

Set your reminders and mark your calendar, Flipkart’s Big Shopping Days starts 16th July, 4 PM and end on 19th July. To participate in 80 hours of shopping madness, click here.

Play

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Flipkart and not by the Scroll editorial team.