In a massive political development, all the BJP ministers in the Jammu and Kashmir government have resigned.
A decision on whether the BJP will remain in the Mehbooba Mufti-led government will be taken after the resignations, as per sources.
Sources have added that the decision regarding the resignations of the six ministers was taken in a meeting at the BJP's party office in Jammu, and that in a six-point charter that will be released soon, the BJP will highlight "the weak stand taken by the Mehbooba Mufti-led government on terrorism".
The resignations are being given to the state party president, not J&K chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, meaning there may yet be room for negotiations between the two parties.
As per BJP sources, the resignations are to effect a complete cabinet reshuffle in J&K with the BJP taking the first step.
A central minister confirmed the development regarding the resignations to Republic TV, saying that the party (BJP) was to be put first.
The development comes mere days after two BJP ministers in the J&K government who had attended communally-toned pro-rapist protests and demanded a CBI probe in the horrific Kathua rape and murder case had resigned following public outrage and the Prime Minister's statement that the government of India would go to any lengths to ensure justice for the Kathua and Unnao rape victims.
One of the ministers who had resigned, Lal Singh, had on Tuesday led a rally from Jammu to Kathua to continue his protests demanding a CBI probe in the case. Details of the horrific rape and murder which were revealed in the chargesheet that was filed in the case by the J&K Police crime branch last Monday had shocked the nation and triggered a wave of outrage.
The PDP, which is the senior member in the alliance that has been in power in India's north-most state since 2015, had issued a news conference where it had said that the alliance would continue. It had welcomed the resignations of the two BJP ministers.
In the most recent J&K assembly elections that were held in late 2014, the then Mufti Mohammad Sayeed-led PDP had won 28 seats in the 87-set house, while the BJP had bagged 25 seats. The JKNC, meanwhile, had won 15 seats.
Here are the six BJP ministers in the Jammu and Kashmir government, as per the J&K government's website:
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