Sat Sharma says party will never play second fiddle to coalition partner PDP
Within minutes of his formal appointment as the state BJP president, Sat Sharma started flexing his muscles by asserting that the saffron party was not going to play second fiddle to the PDP in the coalition. He said the question of abandoning core issues did not arise at any cost. “We are committed to fulfilling the unfinished agenda of founding fathers of the erstwhile Jana Sangh and the present BJP,” he said.
“No question of playing second fiddle (to the PDP) in the coalition. We have 26 MLAs and our coalition partner has 28, which is not a big difference,” Sharma told after his unanimous election as the state president of the BJP. Sharma is the ninth state chief of the BJP.
Without naming any political party, Sharma refuted the allegations that the BJP was befooling people of the Jammu region by accepting a secondary role in the coalition just for power.
“We formed the government with the PDP but the ideologies of both parties are diametrically opposite,” he admitted, adding that both parties were not on the same page on many issues except on the agenda of development on which the coalition runs.
About the perception among people of the Jammu region that the BJP has abandoned its core issues for running the coalition, Sharma said: “We have to change such perceptions because the coalition is running on the agenda of development only and both parties have to keep their ideologies out from the government’s agenda.”
“It is too early to judge the performance of the party’s ministers in the government. Let us wait for six years to prepare a report card of our ministers,” he said when his reaction was sought on the allegations that BJP ministers had failed to come up to the expectations of the people.
Sat Sharma, MLA of Jammu West, was unanimously elected the state president of the BJP in place of Jugal Kishore Sharma, who completed his three-year term.
Earlier at a function which was held to felicitate Sat Sharma, some leaders invoked Jana Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mukherjee to remind the party ministers that Mukherjee had sacrificed his life while fighting against the separate flag and constitution of the state. As the function was held on the premises of the building which was once owned by Praja Parishad stalwart Pandit Prem Nath Dogra, leaders also seized the opportunity to recall the historical agitation launched by Dogra in the early 1950s for total integration of J&K with the rest of the country. The Praja Parishad merged with Jana Sangh in 1970.