Satya Pal Malik is new Governor of Jammu and Kashmir

NN Vohra, Jammu and Kashmir’s longest serving governor, has finally been replaced amid differences with the centre over the formation of a new government in the state and over Article 35A on land ownership rights in the state. Bihar Governor Satya Pal Malik will take over from him.

Mr Vohra was Governor of Jammu and Kashmir for more than a decade.

The state has been under Governor’s Rule since June 20, after the BJP ended its coalition government with Mehbooba Mufti’s People’s Democratic Party or PDP, saying it was “untenable” to continue because of security concerns and rising terrorism.

Sources had told media last month that the government was unlikely to continue with NN Vohra. The Centre and NN Vohra do not see eye to eye on the formation of a new government in Jammu and Kashmir, sources had said. The Centre is keen on it, but Mr Vohra, who had handled the state four times between governments, was not.

A senior functionary of the home ministry said, “At this late stage he is not ready to accommodate certain decisions”.

Mr Vohra was appointed by the Congress-led UPA government and after the BJP came to power, it continued with him. Even though his term ended on June 28, the Centre decided to extend his term until the Amarnath Yatra. The governor heads the board looking into elaborate security cover for the annual pilgrimage.

Satya Pal Malik, a former lawmaker and BJP’s national vice president, had been appointed Bihar Governor in September last year. He has served as Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs and Tourism in 1990.

Born on 24 July 1946, Mr Malik has held many important positions in both the Centre and the state.

The 72-year-old has been a member of the Rajya Sabha twice. After winning in general elections, he also joined the Lok Sabha from 1989 to 1990.

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