Political turmoil in the Indian hill states - J&k, Arunachal and now Uttarakhand

Political turmoil in the Indian hill states J k Arunachal and now Uttarakhand pardesi news 1459247822

The 3 Indian hill states have become the theatres of political volatility and game-plans consecutively.

Starting with the Arunachal legislative assembly, which had witnessed to several political upheavals that had often resulted in political crisis, even toppling of governments. Recently, it again started in November-December last year, when a political game of musical chairs happened once again in the north-eastern hilly state. The actual crisis set-off on December 16, 2016 with 21 rebel Congress MLAs joining hands with 11 BJP members and two Independents to “impeach” speaker Nabam Rebia at a makeshift venue because he had locked down the assembly. Things precipitated when the state Governor JP Rajkhowa called for rescheduling the assembly session, and asked the deputy speaker to take up a motion seeking the removal of Rebia from the Speaker’s post.

On 26 January, 2016 the Indian President Pranab Mukherjee accepted the Cabinet’s recommendation and imposed President’s Rule in the politically unstable state. The Congress, which was in power at the state, protested President’s Rule being imposed before the matter was heard by the Supreme Court. The state is presently under the President rule.

Close on the heels of fall of Congress government in Arunachal Pradesh, the Congress is again reeling under another internal rebellion in another hill state - the Uttarakhand.  The four-year-old Congress government in Uttarkhand led by Harish Rawat plunged into a crisis with 9 party MLAs turning rebels and opposition BJP approaching the Governor staking claim to form the government. As per the latest media reports, President's rule has also been imposed in Uttarakhand.

The Congress MLAs in the hilly state were discontented, it begun with the removal of Vijay Bahuguna as chief minister and are now faced with rebellion against another chief minister - Harish Rawat. Reportedly, the rivalry between incumbent CM Harish Rawat and his predecessor Vijay Bahuguna, is considered as the main cause, which led to the division of party with these MLAs revolting against the party and lending its support to the BJP.

It is still struggling for its continuance and the row over political crisis in Uttarakhand has failed to die down! It's even becoming more complicated day-by-day. Recently a sting video was released by the rebel Congress MLAs, showing the Uttarkhand CM bargaining with rebel party MLAs and offering them money to win over their support during the floor test in the Assembly on 28 March. The Uttarkhand CM has called the video 'fake.'

Importantly, the Governor Krishna Kant Paul has asked Rawat to prove his majority on the floor of the assembly by March 28. The Governor's directive came even as BJP claimed majority with the support of nine rebel Congress MLAs in the 70-member House.

In J&K, political decks were somewhat cleared for Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) President Mehbooba Mufti, 56, to take over as the first woman chief minister (CM) of Jammu and Kashmir, after she was unanimously elected as the legislature party leader and nominated as the party's CM candidate. The PDP-BJP coalition, after 10 months rule from March 2015 to January, ran into rough weather following the death of then Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on January 7, after which the state came under the Governor's Rule. Since then, for over 2 months now, the state has witnessed highest amount of political instability and indecisiveness.

All this while, the PDP leadership has reportedly seeking confidence building measures and assurances on the implementation of the already agreed Agenda for Alliance from the Centre for forming the government again. Hopes for government formation were only revived after the PDP leader Ms. Mehbooba met Indian PM Modi in Delhi. Ms. Mehbooba had also earlier termed her father's decision to align with BJP as an "unpopular" one.

Whatever be the case in 2 states the opposition Congress governments have either been toppled or are at the verge of getting collapsed, courtesy to its own party rebellion, while in the third hill state, BJP meanwhile has so far been able to pacify its partner PDP and save its government.

About the author

Patrick Callahan

Pardesi News Reporter

Pardesi News Reporter

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