Burhan Wani may have been spared, hints J&K CM Mehbooba Mufti
"As far as I know, what I heard from the police and the army, who said they only knew that there were three militants inside the house but did not know who they were."
Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, Thursday, made a sensational revelation on the encounter killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani on July 8.
The Chief Minister said that if the security forces knew about Wani's presence inside the house in Kokernag area of South Kashmir's Anantnag district, they may have given a “second chance” to save the situation.
"As far as I know, what I heard from the police and the army, who said they only knew that there were three militants inside the house but did not know who they were," she said.
Mehbooba said that had the security forces known about Wani's presence it would have been possible to keep the situation "from turning to what it is today."
"I feel if they knew, perhaps we would not have such a situation when the overall situation in the state was improving, so it could have been a chance," she said.
Referring to the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru was hanged in 2013, Mehbooba said that had the government known about the encounter in advance they would have made arrangements to contain the situation.
"When Afzal Guru was hanged, (then chief minister) Omar (Abdullah) knew, so he made all the arrangements before-hand. We knew nothing and we came to know suddenly. But, despite that, we tried to impose curfew so that children do not come out," she said.
Violence has rocked the Valley since July 8, when Wani was killed in an encounter, leaving 47 people dead. At least 5,500 people, including 3,000 security personnel, have also been injured.
Mehbooba said an atmosphere should be created in the state for peace dialogue and the government would do "everything" to provide relief to the people affected by the violence.
"An atmosphere should be created in Jammu and Kashmir where there is dialogue, transparency like in (former Prime Minister Atal Behari) Vajpayee's time when a peace process was started and there was ceasefire with Pakistan," she said.
With PTI inputs