Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Sunday said that process to revoke AFSPA must start on experimental basis. “We are not saying that AFSPA must be revoked immediately and in entirety, but the process can be started on experimental basis,” said Mufti.
She said that only after revoking AFSPA in few areas, situation can be assessed. “After revoking AFSPA in few areas, we can assess situation there. If successful we can revoke it in entirety,” said Mufti.
“The start has to be from somewhere, the experiments have to be from somewhere like it (AFSPA) be revoked from 25 or 40 police stations to see the reaction,” she said.
She also lashed out at Pakistan and urged it to change its policy towards India. “Unfortunate. The country (Pakistan) that claims they are a victim of terrorism themselves, encourages Kashmiri youth to take up guns. Pakistan needs to change this policy of theirs. It is important to start dialogue, confident building measures between the two nations,” said the chief minister.
“I think today we have an opportunity, for the whole country as well as for Pakistan, that if they are really our well-wishers, then they should talk,” she said.
The Chief Minister said there is a need to take “bold measures to address the issue as the people of Jammu and
Kashmir were our own”.
Earlier in the day, Mufti along with several ministers of her government met Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh who is on a two-day visit to the Valley to take stock of the situation in the wake of deadly clashes that have left 46 people dead and 3,400 others injured.
Mehbooba led the government delegation which called on Singh after the Home Minister had met representatives from ruling PDP, BJP and opposition National Conference separately.
“The meeting is still in progress. The Union Minister will address a press conference later in the day before he returns to Delhi,” a state government official said.
— ANI (@ANI_news) July 24, 2016
Meanwhile, curfew remained in force in five districts of Kashmir and some parts of the summer capital as a precautionary measure as an uneasy calm prevailed in the Valley where normal life was paralysed for the 16th consecutive day today.