Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti

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  • Publish Date: May 31 2016 3:13PM
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  • Updated Date: May 31 2016 3:13PM
Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti

Though first month in government is not long enough a period to judge a first time Chief Minister, it does reveal some broad aspects of the leader’s personality in power. And what short and long term development and political goals, he or she seeks to espouse. But on both fronts, Mehbooba Mufti has so far come up short. What is more, she has appeared a completely different person to what she was in opposition. The makeover has seemed swift and dramatic, as it has followed immediately after her principled stand that she will not accept power unless centre acceded to her demand for some confidence building measures for the state. The key demands included vacation of the Army from the unauthorizedly held land in the state, announcement of smart city status for Jammu and Srinagar and the return of a power project or two from the NHPC. Though some movement on the relocation of the Army bunkers began during Governor N N Vohra’s rule, no action followed on the latter two demands.  Nor does centre appear in the mood to fulfil these demands. So far BJP has offered a generic assurance to PDP on its commitment to Agenda of Alliance and this was enough to satisfy Mehbooba. She readily agreed to form the government. But in power, she hasn’t acquitted herself well so far. Her approach to the NIT crisis and the killings at Handwara has been far short of the expectations. In case of the former, she let New Delhi to take control of the situation, and in the latter case too, she sought the intervention of New Delhi, doing exactly what she had ridiculed the rival Omar Abdullah for when he was in power. Our cover story in this issue is about Mehbooba’s transformation in power from an aggressive and putatively soft-separatist leader to the tame Chief Minister seeking to humour New Delhi.

The issue has also a special story on Palhalan and Pulwama, the two major spots of strife in Valley in recent years.   The story looks at the death, despair and defiance at the two places. 
The issue has an important story about the devastating toll that the unnecessary hysterectomies are taking on the women in Valley and in the process sheds light on the medical mafia which promotes the procedure more for monetary gain than its questionable health benefits.