Mufti Mohammad Sayeed (12 January 1936, Bijbehara – 7 January 2016, New Delhi) was a politician from the state of Jammu and Kashmir in India. He was the former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir. He previously served as Chief Minister from November 2, 2002, to November 2, 2005. He was also Home Minister of India from December 1989 to November 1990. He founded the Jammu and Kashmir People’s Democratic Party, in July 1999 to “persuade the Government of India to initiate an unconditional dialogue with Kashmiris for resolution of the Kashmir problem.” On 1 March 2015, Sayeed was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, for the second time and served in that position until his death on 7 January 2016.
Mohammad Sayeed had been a member of the Indian National Congress party until 1987. He is said to have brought about the downfall of the Jammu & Kashmir National Conference government, which was led by Farooq Abdullah, in 1984. In 1987, he quit the Congress party to join V. P. Singh’s Jan Morcha, which led to his becoming the first Muslim Minister for Home Affairs in the Union Cabinet of India in 1989.
He rejoined the Congress under P V Narasimha Rao which he left in 1999 along with daughter Mehbooba Mufti to form his own party, Jammu and Kashmir People’s Democratic Party.
In 1989, within few days of taking office as the Union Minister for Home Affairs, his third daughter Rubaiya was kidnapped by terrorists. She was released in exchange for the release of five militants.
Mohammad Sayeed has survived several attacks on his life by Kashmiri separatists who oppose Indian rule.
Mohammad Sayeed participated in the 2002 assembly election and won 18 assembly seats for his People’s Democratic Party. He went on to form a coalition government with the Indian National Congress, and was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir for a term of three years.
Following a coalition agreement between the BJP and the PDP, Sayeed undertook a second tenure as Chief Minister of the state.
On 24 December 2015, Sayeed was admitted to the AIIMS hospital in New Delhi. He suffered from neck pain and fever. His condition gradually deteriorated, and he was put on ventilator support. He died a few days later, on 7 January 2016.