Srinagar, Jan 11: When President Pranab Mukherjee accepted the Centre's recommendation for Governor's Rule in Jammu and Kashmir on Friday, it was for the sixth time that the state had gone under direct central rule.
The Governor's Rule was imposed in the state after the assembly election results on December 23 threw up a hung assembly with no party or combination of parties able to stake claim for government formation and caretaker Chief Minister Omar Abdullah asking to be relieved from the duties with immediate effect on January 7.
The PDP emerged as the single largest party with 28 seats in the 87-member house in the staggered elections held over five of the last six weeks of 2014. BJP was close second with 25 seats followed by National Conference (15 seats), Congress (12 seats) and others (seven seats).
If the political parties are able to cobble up an alliance within the next six months, it will be for the fourth consecutive time that a democratically elected government in the state was preceded by a spell of Governor's Rule.
The Governor's Rule was imposed for the first time during the tenure of Governor L K Jha in March 1977 when Congress withdrew support to the then government headed by National Conference founder Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah. Abdullah was installed as the Chief Minister of the state following the Indira-Sheikh Delhi Accord in 1975.
The tallest leader of the state returned to power with a thumping majority in the subsequent elections held in July 1977. Direct central rule was imposed in the state for the second time in March 1986 when Congress withdrawn support to the minority government headed by Abdullah's son-in-law Ghulam Mohammad Shah.
Shah had engineered a split in National Conference in 1984 to form his own government with Congress support.
However, he had to step down after Congress withdrew support over law and order problems in the state, leading to recommendation of Governor's Rule by the Governor Jagmohan Malhotra.
The Governor's Rule came to an end in November 1986 as then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi entered into an accord with National Conference president Farooq Abdullah for power sharing in the state. Jagmohan's return to Rajbhavan for a second term in January 1990 led to resignation by then Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah, necessitating another spell of Governor's rule.
This was the longest spell of direct central rule in the state -- six years and eight months -- as elections could not be held due to eruption of militancy in many parts of the state.
Although Jagmohan was recalled within six months of his second appointment, the Governor's Rule continued till October 1996 when fresh assembly elections were held. Governor's Rule had to be imposed in the state for the fourth time in October 2002 after caretaker Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah refused to continue in the office in the wake of his party's defeat in the assembly elections that year.
It was the shortest spell of Governor's Rule -- 15 days -- as the PDP and Congress with support of 12 independents formed a government on November 2. Governor's Rule was imposed in the state for 174 days after the PDP withdrew support to Ghulam Nabi Azad-led Congress-PDP coalition government in July 2008.
The PDP withdrew support to the government on June 28, 2008 following widespread protests during the Amarnath Land row agitation that pitted Hindu-dominated Jammu region against the Muslim-majority Kashmir valley. Azad was to seek a vote of confidence in the Legislative Assembly on July 7 but chose to resign instead. The central rule came to an end on January 5, 2009 after Omar was sworn in as the youngest Chief Minister of the state.