The Kashmiri separatist leader had on Friday claimed that two emissaries of BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi had approached him for a meeting with him on the Kashmir issue

The Bharatiya Janata Party on Saturday demanded an apology from Kashmiri separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani for his claims that its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi had sent emissaries to meet him on the Kashmir issue.

Rejecting Mr. Geelani’s claims as “baseless and mischievous”, BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said no representative of the Gujarat Chief Minister has ever met the separatist leader.

“We would like to demand from Geelani that he must apologise for making this false and unfounded statement,” Mr. Prasad told reporters here.

Mr. Geelani had on Friday claimed that two emissaries of Mr. Modi had approached him on March 22 for a meeting with him while he was in Delhi for treatment. The separatist leader said he rejected the offer citing Mr. Modi’s RSS background.

“The BJP would like to emphasise that the said claim is totally baseless, unfounded, mischievous, malicious and full of prejudices against the BJP. We would like to highlight very clearly and categorically and with full sense of responsibility that no representative of Modi has ever met Geelani,” he said.

Mr. Prasad said, “The BJP firmly believes Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and the BJP is committed to development of J&K where good governance is the biggest casualty and where corruption has led to loss of development and progress.

“People of the state need a corruption free administration. Young people need jobs, need development, good governance. But getting these fundamental issues addressed, separatist leaders tried to cloud the aspiration of youth,” he said.

He said, “BJP strongly condemns it and reiterates that J&K is an integral part of India. BJP is firmly committed to the development of the state.”

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