Talk to everyone, Kashmir delegation tells government

Talk to everyone, Kashmir delegation tells government

Talk to everyone, Kashmir delegation tells government
The all-party delegation that visited Jammu & Kashmir has asked the Centre to stop using pellet guns and initiate talks with all stakeholders, including the Hurriyat. But efforts to restore normalcy should not compromise on India’s sovereignty, the delegation has stressed.

At a meeting convened by Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday, the delegation made it clear that there was no place for violence in a civilised society and asked the government to resolve all issues through dialogue and discussion.

While the Centre appeared open to the suggestion of opening a dialogue with the Hurriyat, it rejected the demand for repealing the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act from civilian areas in Kashmir, contending that it would affect the functioning of the armed forces.

“The members requested the Central and state government to take steps for a dialogue with all stakeholders,” a statement issued by the delegation at the end of the three-hour meeting said.

The delegation had visited Kashmir on Sunday as part of the efforts to reach out to calm the tempers in Kashmir since the July 8 killing of Hizb-ul-Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani. They also asked the Central and state government to take steps to ensure that educational institutions, government offices and commercial establishments start functioning normally at the earliest.

Sources said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley did most of the talking on behalf of the government, while Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge set the ball rolling for the Opposition by raising the news reports on curtailing state facilities extended to the separatists. Singh said the news reports were incorrect and there was no such proposal.
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