Srinagar: Education Minister Altaf Bukhari, who have been given the additional charge of Finance after Haseeb Drabu’s removal, said that ‘finance was being run by a very competent man’.
Haseeb Drabu, the ex-finance minister was removed by the Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti from the cabinet after he said that ‘Kashmir was not a political problem. His statement created a political storm and lead to his removal.
“The Finance department was run by a very competent man. I will continue the all good work which was done by Haseeb Drabu,” Bukhari said soon after he was assigned the additional charge as the finance minister.
He added ,“I will hold a review meeting of the department to understand the work.”
When asked that liabilities have been accumulated in the various government departments, Bukhari asserted that liabilities are part of developmental issues. “Liabilities are part of development. If there is liability it means something has been done,” he maintained.
The minister said that nothing will be changed in the regularization process of daily rated workers. “It was government’s reformation process. I will look into the issue and assure you that nothing will be changed in the policy,” he said.
Earlier, Mehbooba Mufti had announced to keep the finance ministry under her own command, but on Tuesday the Bukhari was given the charge of the ministry.
“In pursuance of Rule 5 of Jammu and Kashmir government Business rules and as an interim measure, I Mehbooba Mufti, do hereby assign the charge of the departments of the Finance, Labour and Employment to Syed Muhammad Altaf Bukhari in addition to the government business already assigned to him,” read the order of the CM.
Drabu had framed the Agenda for Alliance (AoA), the Common Minimum Programme (CMP) of the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and the rightwing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), when PDP and BJP came together to form the government led by PDP founder Mufti Muhammad Sayeed in March 2015.
Speaking at an event themed ‘Kashmir: The Way Forward’ at New Delhi, Drabu was quoted by media saying that people need to introspect over nature and origins of situation in the state and how it can be resolved.
“Don’t see J&K as a conflict state and a political issue, it is a society which has social issues right now. We are trying to find our own space and we are going through a process which many other countries are also going through,” Drabu was quoted.
After dropping Drab, PDP has already said that it will take a decision whether he will be a part of the party in the coming days.
However, the BJP, PDP’s alliance partner endorsed Drabu’s controversial remarks and said that that the only issue in Kashmir is to ‘get back Pakistan Occupied Kashmir.’
(With inputs from KNS)