Srinagar, September 4, 2016
An all-party delegation, led by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, met about 200 people in about 30 delegations from various sections of society here today and heard their views on ways of ending the crisis in Jammu & Kashmir.
The delegation is on a two-day visit to the state for an assessment of the situation arising out of the violence and unrest since the death of Hizb ul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani in an encounter with security forces on July 8.
Before leaving for Srinagar today, Mr. Rajnath Singh had said that the delegation intended to talk to individuals and groups who want peace and normalcy in the Kashmir valley.
An official press release said the delegation heard views expressed by various people on ways of reaching a common solution to the current scenario.
The delegation held a meeting with Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti. During the meeting, the State Government made a detailed presentation on the situation.
"It was emphsasised that a clear roadmap needs to be drawn with a focus on the way forward. It was also stressed upon that the recommendations of Working Groups and Parliamentary delegations need to be considered," the release said.
While interacting with the delegation, Ms. Mufti said that Kashmir was a common issue of national interest and should not be viewed as a political issue. All the parties agreed to this fact and emphasised that steps need to be taken to restore normalcy and peace in Kashmir at the earliest.
Ms. Mufti also thanked all the parties for visitng the state to listen to the problems of people of Jammu and Kashmir. She also thanked the members for holding discussions on the issue in Parliament.
She emphasised that the media needed to be sensitive while reporting on such issues like the current happenings in Kashmir.
The delegation also met the representatives of various political parties. Various political parties expressed their concern over the injuries to civilians due to the use of pellet guns.
Mr. Rajnath Singh said that the Government is already working on the alternatives to pellet guns such as PAVA shells.
Union Ministers Arun Jaitley, Ram Vilas Paswan and Jitendra Singh, Congress leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad, Mallikarjun Kharge and Ambika Soni, CPI (M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, Janata Dal (United) leader Sharad Yadav, CPI leader D. Raja,
NCP's Tariq Anwar, Saugata Roy of Trinamool Congress, Sanjay Raut of Shiv Sena and Anandrao Adsul, TDP's Thota Narasimham, Shiromani Akali Dal's Prem Singh Chandumajra, BJD's Dilip Tirkey, AIMIM's Asaduddin Owaisi, AIUDF's Badaruddin Ajmal, Muslim League's E Ahamed, Jitendra Reddy (TRS), N K Premchandran (RSP), P Venugopal (AIADMK), Tiruchi Siva (DMK), Y B Subba (YSR Congress), Jaiprakash Yadav (RJD), Dharamveer Gandhi (AAP) and Dushyant Chautala (RLD) are part of the delegation.
J&K National Conference led by former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, Indian National Congress J&K led by its president Ghulam Ahmad Mir, People's Democratic Party led by Mr. Sartaj Madni, People's Conference led by Mr. Sajad Gani Lone, Communist Party of India (M) led by Mr. M. Y. Tarigami, Awami Itihaad Party led by Mr. Abdul Rashid, People's Democratic Front led by Mr. H. M. Yaseen, Democratic Party Nationalist led by Mr. Ghulam Hassan Mir and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led by is state president Sat Sharma met the delgation.
These parties expressed their views and ground level experiences during the meeting, the release said.
Apart from political parties, groups of academicians, teachers and student associations, representatives of school management, prominent NGOs, representatives of Leh, Kargil, Pahari associations, Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee, Fruit & Saffron Growers associtions and civil society also meet the delegation.
The Jammu and Kashmir Students Welfare Association informed the delegation that they are willing to work with Government of India to bring normalcy in the state.
The delegation was due to meet Jammu & Kashmir Governor N. N. Vohra later this evening.
The delgation will meet some more civil society groups here tomorrow morning before travelling to Jammu, the release added.
The delegation has about 30 members, including leaders of more than 20 political parties.
Mr. Rajnath Singh had visited Srinagar twice in recent weeks for talks with top officials and political leaders as part of the Centre's efforts to end the crisis.
Last week, Ms. Mufti had met Prime Minister Narendra Modi here when he had assured her that the agenda of the ruling alliance in the state, between her PDP and the BJP would be implemented as part of the efforts to bring an end to the violence.
Ms. Mufti had told reporters after that meeting that she had told the Prime Minister that the agenda, on the basis of which her party had gone into the alliance with the BJP, which is in power at the Centre, had not been followed.
Mr. Modi had also met an Opposition delegation from Jammu & Kashmir when he had voiced deep concern and pain at the prevailing situation in the state and reiterated his commitment to its development of the State and its people.
He had also stressed the need for all political parties to work together to find a solution to the problems in the state.
Mr. Rajnath Singh had announced during his visit to Srinagar last month that his Ministry would designate a nodal officer to address the grievances of the people of Kashmir directly.