Indicating a shift in the Centre’s strategy to deal with separatists, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday asked the local youth in Kashmir to confront them for playing with their future.
“Some elements have been raising pro-Pakistan slogans and displaying Pakistani flags. I appeal to the people to boycott such elements,’’ he said here.
Rajnath Singh was in Jammu in connection with BJP’s countrywide “Jan Chetna Parv’’, organised to highlight achievements of the Narendra Modi government during its first year in power. “There has been a new government both at the Centre and in the state. Give it an opportunity to work for your welfare,’’ the Home Minister said, adding that “we are prepared for all sorts of compromises, but there will be no compromise on national security’’.
“We will not tolerate raising of pro-Pakistan slogans or display of Pakistan flags on the Indian soil,’’ he added. “We are worried about the future of youth, but such elements want to play with their future,’’ he said, adding, “I appeal to the youth to come forward and confront them’’.
Significantly, this is the first time that Centre has appealed to local people to come forward and confront those raising pro-Pakistan slogans and waving Pakistan flags in the Valley. Earlier, the governments at the Centre dealt with such elements by slapping charges of sedition on them or keeping them under preventive detention.
Addressing BJP workers earlier in the day, the Home Minister said the government was ready to talk to anyone and its “doors were open for all.”
However, he again stressed that the government would not tolerate any anti-national activity.
Without naming Hurriyat hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani, at whose rally in Tral Pakistan flags were displayed, Singh hoped that the state government would take action in the matter. He also described the raising of pro-Pakistan slogans in the Valley as “un-Islamic”, adding that “no religion approves of living on the soil of one nation and raising slogans to praise another”.
Bandh in Jammu
Taking note of the bandh in Jammu over the demand for an AIIMS, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said Wednesday that he would talk to PM Narendra Modi to resolve in the issue. ENS