National security is priority: Rajnath

National security is priority: Rajnath

Alam's release: Oppn seeks dismissal of J&K govt, ban on PDP

National security is priority: Rajnath

Talking tough on the issue of release of separatist leader Masarat Alam, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday said that the Centre’s priority is national security and not the continuance of the PDP-BJP government in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K).

Singh also expressed his dissatisfaction over the official version sent earlier by the state government to the Home Ministry, though he refused to elaborate.

“My government will not compromise with national security at any cost. For us any government, whether in alliance or not, that is not our priority. Our priority is country and its security. You should understand this intention of ours,” Singh said on the sidelines of the 46th Raising Day of the CISF in  Ghaziabad.

Singh has also sought more clarification from the state government on its response. He said he would comment only after looking into it.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on Monday asserted in the Lok Sabha that the government would not tolerate any compromise with the nation’s integrity and that Alam’s release was “not acceptable”.

 Asked about reports that he has spoken to J&K Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, he said he has not spoken to him in the “last about three years or so.”

Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh and senior state BJP leaders met party president Amit Shah to brief him about the developments following Alam’s release.

Asked whether the BJP was withdrawing support to the PDP, Nirmal Singh said, “The J&K government is a stable government.”

The release of Alam had put the BJP on the back foot with the Opposition attacking the ruling party, which is a coalition partner of the PDP, inside and outside Parliament.

The issue figured in both Houses of Parliament on Tuesday. The Lok Sabha witnessed demand for dismissal of the state government and a ban on the PDP in the wake of its “anti-national” act of releasing Alam.

The issue was raised in the Zero Hour by AIADMK MP P Venugopal who said his party was “not satisfied” with the explanation given by the prime minister and home minister to the House on Monday.

Another MP Anwar Raza said the J&K government should be dismissed as it was “acting against the sovereignty of the nation.”

The Opposition also sought to corner the government in the Rajya Sabha, expressing concern over reports that the state was planning to release 800 more separatists.

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