Mehbooba meets PM, slams Pakistan for fuelling violence in Kashmir

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Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti on Saturday slammed Pakistan for fuelling violence in the Kashmir valley.
“Pakistan has been openly trying to provoke and fuel tensions in Kashmir valley,” Mehbooba told reporters after her meeting with PM Narendra Modi.
She said that “PM Modi, like all of us, is very concerned with the situation in Jammu and Kashmir”.
Mehbooba said that the situation in Kashmir has been bad since 2008. “The UPA government had ignored the situation after the 2008 unrest. But PM Modi is trying to resolve the situation,” she said.
Mehbooba praised PM Modi and home minister Rajnath Singh for taking initiatives to start a dialouge with Pakistan.
“PM Modi reached out to Pakistan, went to Lahore, but then Pathankot happened. Home minister Rajnath Singh also went to Islambad. Unfortunately, Pakistan has repeatedly given up chances to talk and resolve the issue of violence in Kashmir,” the J&K CM said.
“Now, it is time for Pakistan to respond if it wants peace in Kashmir,” she added.
Calling for talks between interlocutors and all stakeholders to resolve the Kashmir situation, Mehbooba also urged Separatists to come forward and help in saving lives of innocent youth in the state.
“As a mother, I am pained to see that kids are being told to go out and stone police stations. Will stone-pelting solve the issue,” she asked.
This is the first meeting between the Prime Minister and Mehbooba after the protests erupted in the valley following the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist Burhan Wani.
Burhan Wani was killed in an encounter with the security forces on July 8.
Earlier this week, Modi had a meeting with a delegation of opposition parties from the state led by former chief minister Omar Abdullah.
After that meeting, for the first time, Modi had expressed his “deep concern and pain” over the situation in the valley and asked all political parties to work together to find a “permanent and lasting” solution to problems in the state. He had also made an appeal for restoration of normalcy in the valley and emphasised that there has to be a dialogue.
In his statement, the Prime Minister had appreciated the “constructive suggestions” made by the opposition delegation during the talks and reiterated his government’s commitment to the welfare of people.
Mehbooba had strongly defended security forces action on Thursday during a press conference and had said “People came on streets, we imposed curfew. Did the children go to army camps to buy toffees (candy)? Was the 15-year-old boy, who attacked the police station at Damhal Hanjipora (in south Kashmir), going there to get milk…”
She had said “Today 95 per cent who have been killed are youngsters belonging to poor families. They were killed in retaliation for attacking security camps… The situations of 2010 and present cannot be compared.” She claimed that 95 per cent of people want to resolve the Kashmir issue through political means and dialogue but five per cent people were resorting to agitation.

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