By M M Special Correspondent,
New Delhi : As central government last week announced Satya Pal Malik as the new Governor of J&K, replacing N N Vohra – who was credited for smooth running of state- the party has been left red-faced by its own state president over the ‘politically motivated’ appointment.
In a video clip that got widely circulated on social media, Ravinder Raina, J&K BJP chief and Nowshera MLA, clip: “Vohra ko hum nahin laana chahte the… Woh apni dafli bajata tha… Abhi Governor aaya hai, woh hamara banda hai (We did not want to bring Vohra… He used to tomtom his own achievements… The Governor who has come now, he is our man).”
The video was shot at the Dak Bungalow in Sunderbani Tuesday, and captures Raina making these remarks to an agitated group of college students demanding better facilities. The video shows that Raina was with BJP MP from Jammu-Poonch Lok Sabha constituency, Jugal Kishore Sharma, at the time.
Party sources and local residents who were present on the occasion confirmed the contents of the video. However, when contacted, Raina said he had made the remarks during a meeting with leaders from other parties who wanted him to take up the issue of utilisation of MLAs’ Constituency Development Fund (CDF), and laying of foundation stones and inauguration of newly completed projects.
“It was in this context that I said, ‘Woh hamara Governor hai’. By saying so, I meant that he is the Governor of all people as he had restored CDF of MLAs and reversed the order of his predecessor restraining them from laying foundation stones of new works or inaugurating the completed ones,” Raina said.
The Congress’s chief spokesperson in J&K, Ravinder Sharma, described Raina’s statement as “unfortunate”. “It clearly indicates that the BJP was unhappy with the former Governor for his forthrightness and independent decision-making. The way BJP leader has referred to the former and present Governors is an insult to the institution.”