India's only Muslim-majority state had been ruled directly from New Delhi since the death in January of Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, who formed an uneasy alliance with the nationally ruling Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party after a 2015 election.
His daughter, who heads the moderate People's Democratic Party (PDP) that he founded in 1999, had initially appeared reluctant to continue the unpopular coalition.The alliance marked the first time the rightwing BJP held a leadership position in the Muslim-majority region also claimed by India's archenemy, Pakistan.
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