Other States

Talk to all stakeholders, including Hurriyat: all-party delegation

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has told an all-party delegation that will visit Jammu and Kashmir on Sunday, that he will wait for its feedback before formulating a plan to end the unrest in the State, even as the Opposition parties have demanded that “all stakeholders,” including the Hurriyat, be included in the talks.

A note, circulated by the Home Ministry among the MPs of the delegation, refers to the agitation as one with “no identifiable leadership.” This led to a demand by the delegation that all stakeholders, including separatists, be involved in the talks.

At a meeting to brief the members of the delegation before their departure for Srinagar, Mr. Singh said the State government would be responsible for arranging meetings with political and civil society groups.

He, however, remained non-committal on talks with the Hurriyat. “The leaders of all parties gave their suggestions. This delegation will meet different delegations in Kashmir. After coming back, the delegation will convene a meeting and give suggestions on the basis of which the Centre will decide its future course of action,” Mr. Singh said after the meeting.

Sitaram Yechury of the CPI(M), D. Raja of the CPI and Asaduddin Owaisi of the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, however, underscored the need for meeting the separatists to find a lasting solution.

“The government should invite Hurriyat for talks with the all-party delegation. The invitation extended to others should be given to the Hurriyat too. It is up to them to meet the delegation,” Mr. Yechury said.

Ghulam Nabi Azad wants pellet guns banned

Ghulam Nabi Azad, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha and former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, said the visit of the all-party delegation to the State, should be accompanied by the announcement of a confidence-building measure, like a ban on the use of pellet guns.

“The government should open talks with all stakeholders. The Centre and the State government know who the stakeholders are. They have to identify the stakeholders and invite [them for the talks],” he said. “Pellet guns should be replaced with less lethal options…”

Asaduddin Owaisi of the AIMIM said the parties wanted to visit hospitals where those hit by the pellets and nearly 4,000 security men injured in the violence were being treated.

However, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh did not favour such a visit, according to sources present at the meeting to brief the delegation members. “He said he too had wanted to visit those injured but there were apprehensions of disturbances escalating in those areas,” said an MP who attended the meeting.

Not all parties were in favour of talks with the Hurriyat. Sanjay Raut of the Shiv Sena, also part of the delegation, told The Hindu that his party was for talks with those “who wanted a solution within the constitutional framework.” “We have to see who are the groups… and make an assessment of who seems to be behind the agitation. There is no need to meet people who will speak the language of Pakistan and not the Indian Constitution,” he said.

Prem Singh Chandumajra of the Shiromani Akali Dal said the secular face of Jammu and Kashmir was being lost to violence. “It needs a political framework. It is not merely a law and order issue.”

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Printable version | Nov 29, 2021 11:43:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/Talk-to-all-stakeholders-including-Hurriyat-all-party-delegation/article14621972.ece

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