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PDP minister back, crisis far from over

Jammu, Feb 21: Although one of the two PDP ministers who quit has rejoined office and the other has promised to do so soon, the crisis persists in Jammu and Kashmir’s main ruling party.

Basharat Bukhari, who submitted his resigtion to Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti immediately after a portfolio reshuffle, joined back office as the Horticulture Minister on Tuesday.

Imran Raza Ansari, who too resigned after apparently being irked over not getting a better portfolio, has left for Iran on a persol visit.

Peoples Democratic Party sources said Imran Ansari has promised to assume office on his return. Both the disgruntled ministers met Mehbooba Mufti who asked them to withdraw their resigtion before she could address their concerns, informed sources said.

Bukhari did not deny that portfolio allocation was one reason for his resigtion.

“If I said portfolio allocation had nothing to do with my resigtion, I would be lying. I have been elected by the people and I am answerable to them. That is why I had to make my stand clear,” Bukhari told the media. “I have written to Mehboobaji and she has promised my concerns will be addressed. Hope that happens,” he said while confirming that he has taken up his new assignment in the reshuffled ministry.

Imran Ansari is silent over the reasons for his resigtion.

But a legislator from Srigar’s Zadibal constituency, Abid Ansari, has launched a frontal attack on Roads and Buildings Minister eem Akhtar and another senior party leader, Peerzada Mansoor Hussain.

If the party gets decimated in by-elections to the Lok Sabha due by March, eem Akhtar and Peerzada Manzoor would be responsible, Abid Ansari said. Srigar PDP MP Tariq Hameed Karra resigned from the party and the Lok Sabha after joining the Congress. Mehbooba Mufti’s Lok Sabha seat, Antg, is also vacant. (IANS)

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Ankur Kalita