He urges her to attend all-party meeting convened by Omar
Even as the turmoil in Jammu and Kashmir continued, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday called up People's Democratic Party (PDP) leader Mehbooba Mufti, urging her to attend the all-party meeting called by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah in Srinagar for Monday, government sources said.
This was on a day that Union Minister for New and Renewable Energy, National Conference (NC) patron and the Chief Minister's father, Farooq Abdullah, met the Prime Minister and Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram separately.
Dr. Abdullah, who had been abroad for the last 10 days, the sources said, pleaded that the Centre help his son regain control of the situation. He assured the Central leaders that he would help the Chief Minister restore peace in the Valley. After the two meetings, the former three-time Chief Minister of J&K left for Srinagar to hold consultations with Mr. Abdullah, State Ministers and other political leaders.
Saturday's meetings come in the wake of the Congress Core Group's weekly meeting on Friday, where the volatile situation in Kashmir and all possible political options to deal with it topped the agenda. The Core Group members include the Prime Minister, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, her political secretary Ahmed Patel, and Union Ministers Pranab Mukherjee, P. Chidambaram and A.K. Antony.
The sources said the Congress central leadership wanted all mainstream political parties in the Valley, particularly the PDP, to help in the task of isolating the separatists and restoring normality.
“It is imperative that all stakeholders, who believe in the democratic polity and are part of the national mainstream, walk the extra mile to ensure that separatist forces supported from across the border are defeated,” Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari said. Indeed, on Saturday, Mr. Abdullah wrote to Ms. Mufti again, urging her to attend Monday's meeting: “We are on the crossroads of a crucial phase in Kashmir and it’s time for all of us to work together to pave the way forward irrespective of our political beliefs.”