The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, met here late on Sunday evening to review the situation in the Kashmir Valley, which is under curfew following a renewed wave of unrest since Friday.

This is the second time in less than a month that the CCS took stock of the situation in Kashmir. After analysing intelligence reports, the views of political parties and the inputs received from the State government and Governor N.N. Vohra, and discussing Chief Minister Omar Abdullah's plan to begin an internal dialogue with all shades of opinion, the meeting concluded that the focus should be on a political rather than military solution.

The State's request to the Centre to agree to the rehabilitation of former militants who had served their jail sentences and were unemployed and to a comprehensive policy for those youths who were willing to return from the Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir were also discussed. Apparently, the intelligence agencies had reported that the majority of stone-throwers were those who had been former militants, now unemployed.

Besides the Prime Minister, those who attended the meeting were Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Defence Minister A.K. Antony and senior bureaucrats from the Home and Defence Ministries.

The CCS last met on July 7, when its members discussed the Kashmir situation and favoured the “maximum crackdown” on those who contributed to the current situation in the Valley

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