Home Minister Amit Shah held a meeting with top security officials, including National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba, on Sunday and is believed to have discussed the prevailing situation in Jammu and Kashmir, PTI reported.
J&K has been on the edge after the state government, citing security concerns, ordered tourists and Amarnath Yatra pilgrims to leave immediately. The outcome of the hour-long meeting is not known yet.
Meanwhile, former chief minister and PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti lashed out at the Centre for “willingly creating a sense of panic and distress” and tagged a report that said about 100 cricketers, including former India bowler Irfan Pathan, have been asked to leave Kashmir.
“Evacuate yatris, tourists, labourers, students, and cricketers. Willingly create a sense of panic and distress but don’t bother giving Kashmiris a sense of relief or security. Kahan gayi insaniyat, kashmiriyat aur jamhooriyat?” she tweeted.
Irfan Pathan, who is the mentor of Jammu and Kashmir state teams, and age-group aspirants, left for their respective homes after the ongoing U-16 and U-19 trials in Srinagar were postponed due to the prevailing security situation in the valley.
“We have for the time being postponed the second phase of junior team trials. We had the first phase from June to July. This was the second phase. However since there has been a government advisory, I had a meeting with Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association (JKCA) CEO Mr Bukhari and administrator Justice Prasad. Accordingly, it was decided that boys need to be sent back home,” Pathan told PTI on Sunday.
Besides the curtailing of the Amarnath Yatra, the state administration also suspended the Machail Mata pilgrimage on Saturday in a series of measures that have led to at least six countries issuing advisories against travelling to Jammu and Kashmir.
Outstation students of NIT Srinagar were also asked to leave the campus and not return till any further orders were given. The uncertain state of affairs in the state has led to speculation that the Centre was planning to do away with Article 35A, which entitles the residents of the state with exclusive rights to land and government jobs.
Evacuate yatris, tourists, labourers, students & cricketers. Willingly create a sense of panic & distress but don’t bother giving Kashmiris a sense of relief or security.
Kahan gayi insaniyat, kashmiriyat aur jamhooriyat? https://t.co/Y45AxiMwwq
— Mehbooba Mufti (@MehboobaMufti) August 4, 2019
J&K Governor Satya Pal Malik said there was no need to panic as the deployment of additional paramilitary forces was purely for security reasons, he underscored there were no plans to repeal Articles 370 and 35A of the Constitution.
Political parties have warned the Centre of resorting to any “misadventure” in J&K. Congress on Saturday said PM Modi should make a statement in Parliament regarding the current situation in the state.
Addressing a press conference at the Congress office here, senior party leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said the Amarnath Yatra had never been curtailed, even when the pilgrimage was targeted by terrorists. “The Prime Minister should make statements in both houses of Parliament on the current situation in Jammu and Kashmir. It’s his duty,” Azad said.
A delegation comprising National Conference President Farooq Abdullah, former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and a party MP met PM Narendra Modi on Thursday, urging him not to take any step which may hamper the law and order in the state. They also asked the PM to facilitate the state assembly elections by year-end.
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