Modi juggernaut: Will bonhomie with separatists help BJP to achieve 'Mission Kashmir'?

Narendra Modi
Buoyed by recent assembly poll results where BJP got thumping victory, the party is hammering its head hard to make its 'Mission 50' a success in Jammu and Kashmir.

From wooing smaller parties like Peoples Conference to giving prominence to Muslim candidates, BJP is not leaving any single stone unturned to create history in the State. And above all the party has Modi mascot which till now has proved the midas touch.

Why bonhomie with separatist?

was a great surprise for many after Prime Minister Narendra Modi met former J&K separatist Sajjad Lone in New Delhi recently. The reason being party's assertive approach towards them till date. But, it seems BJP is meticulously planning its strategy for the valley, where the People's Conference leader Lone has big clout.

The saffron party knows that Sajjad Lone can be useful in securing 4-5 seats in valley where he has big influence, specially in Kupwara and Baramulla districts. Though he has not opened his cards whether he will support BJP or not, but the way he heaped praise on the Prime Minister, is a big plus point for the party.

Terming Modi his big brother, Lone said, "I came as a Kashmiri to meet the Prime Minister and I was pleasantly surprised with his down to earth personality, his vision about bringing in investments into the state".

Not only this, earlier while meeting with BJP leader Ram Madhav, he said, "The Congress that dominated the political scene in Kashmir confined itself to the Abdullah and Mufti families. Here is the change. There is another national party which is in power and whose national leaders come to Kashmir and meet people like Sajjad Lone."

With the help of ex-separatist, party can kill two birds with one stone. The people Conference may help BJP to appease Muslims in the valley and at the same time can destroy PDP's plan to secure major chunk in the State. The way Lone spoke positively about Modi, it will surely bring political gain to party.

Political history of Lone
Former Separatist leader Lone came into limelight in 2002, when he had openly accused Hurriyat hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani for his father's murder. At the funeral of his slain father, he had snubbed Geelani and other Hurriyat leaders.

This time Sajjad Lone has decided to revive People's Conference founded by his father Abul Gani Lone, who was killed by Pakistan-based militants. His party is contesting from 12 seats in Kupwara and Handwara.

After fielding proxy candidates in 2008 elections, Lone had contested the 2009 Lok Sabha elections but finished at fifth place. He did not contest this year's Lok Sabha elections but fielded a candidate who failed miserably.

Will PM-Lone friendship augur well among Kashmiri Pandits?

Sources say that Kashmiri Pandits is not at all happy with this new development. The KPs who in couple of days will strategies about their plan said that the party is on footprint of soft policy of Atal Bihari Vajpayee Government. Fuming Pandits say that separatist's gesture still not give confidence about their true intention.

Though, BJP knows it well that friendship with separatists will not augur well among Pandits. Sniffing that, BJP reiterated about their stand on the Article 370. "All issues (including Article 370) which have been part of the BJP manifesto all these years will be part of the agenda", Union Minister Jitendra Singh said on Tuesday.

The saffron party can ill-afford the Kashmiri Pandits who are very crucial to create history in the State.

Lal Singh , Ajatshatru Singh joined BJP recently

The Lok Sabha results proves that BJP has good strength in Jammu and Ladakh region. In that election, the party had led in 24 seats in the region having vote share of more than 45 per cent, while both the Congress and NC together managed to lead in only 11 seats.

Their(Cong-NC) combined vote share was also very low around 34 per cent. BJP had won lone seat from Ladakh region in Lok Sabha election and recent tough stand against china gives BJP an edge. So, party has reason to feel confident about these region.

Moreover, Congress bigwigs like Lal Singh and Ajatshatru Singh, son of Congress leader Karan Singh joining BJP will further give push to party's prospect.

Strategy to thrive on anti-incumbency in the State

The BJP's strategy this time is not to touch controversial topics like article 370 and instead thrive on anti-incumbency and dynastic politics of national conference(NC) and PDP.

The NC-congress alliance has been ruling the State since 2008 and before that Congress with PDP was at the helm. BJP in it's campaign will highlights failures of these parties. After ruling for so many years these parties have not been able to address the real problem, the state is battling with.

The unemployment, inflation is on record high in the State. Growth and development is nowhere is in the sight. The saffron party will provoke people on these issues in coming days.

It seems, BJP has planned well to rout all Opposition parties in the State, and with all arms in their armour, Modi-led party deserves to create history.

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