Ban pellet guns in Kashmir, Omar Abdullah-led delegation asks PM Modihttps://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/kashmir-unrest-protests-narendra-modi-omar-abdullah-pellet-guns-2989890/

Ban pellet guns in Kashmir, Omar Abdullah-led delegation asks PM Modi

Close to 70 people have been killed in clashes with security forces in Kashmir Valley since July 8.

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Former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and Opposition delegation from Jammu and Kashmir talking to media after meet PM Narendra Modi at PMO office in new Delhi on Monday Express photo by Prem nath Pandey

An opposition delegation from Jammu and Kashmir led by former Chief Minister and National Conference chief Omar Abdullah called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi Monday to discuss the ongoing turmoil in the state. The delegation informed the Prime Minister of the ground situation in the state, ever since the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani over a month ago on July 8. Over 66 people have been killed in clashes with security forces across the Valley.

The delegation submitted a memorandum to PM Modi seeking immediate ban on pellet guns in the state. The team further requested the Prime Minister to initiate dialogue with all stakeholders in the Kashmir valley immediately. “A continued failure to address the unrest in Kashmir will further deepen the sense of alienation,” the delegation told PM Modi.

The delegation apprised the Prime Minister that the tried and tested formulations of dealing with the political issue in Kashmir administratively rather than politically has further exasperated the situation and “created an unprecedented sense of disaffection and disenchantment”, especially among the youth. “We are of the firm opinion that the Central Government should waste no further time in initiating a credible and meaningful political dialogue with all stakeholders to address the unrest in the state,” the memorandum said.

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The delegation said, “continued failure to address the unrest in Kashmir will further deepen the sense of alienation” and hoped that the Prime Minister “will take immediate measures to address this grave situation.”

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi meeting a delegation of opposition leaders from Kashmir led by former CM Omar Abdullah (ANI photo)

The delegation included CPI-M MLA Mohammed Yusuf Tarigami, state Congress President G A Mir, senior leaders of National Conference and some Independent MLAs.

Earlier, on Saturday, leaders of opposition parties led by Omar had called on President Pranab Mukherjee and requested him to urge the Modi government to find a political solution to the unrest in Kashmir.

The visit to the President followed a meeting chaired by Omar where serious concerns were voiced about the turmoil spreading to other parts of the state including Jammu and Kargil. Kashmir has been on a lockdown for the past 45 days since the killing of Wani. There has also been heavy criticism of the use of pellet guns by security forces, which have resulted in several young men and women being blinded.

(With inputs from PTI)

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