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Will persuade Centre for talks if separatists are willing: Omar

Last Updated: Monday, August 5, 2013 - 21:05

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Monday said he will persuade the Centre to hold talks with the separatists if the latter show willingness to enter the dialogue with the government.
"...They (separatists) have to be willing to come forward for a dialogue (with the Centre) but so far there has been reluctance on their part. If any willingness is shown I am sure I will be able to motivate the Centre to talk to them," Omar told reporters on the sidelines of a function here.

The Chief Minister said unfortunately, it was not for him to invite the separatists for dialogue.

"If they have grouse or any complaint with me, I will be more than happy to invite (them). My role is to facilitate a dialogue between them and the Centre which I am trying to do by making sure that the situation in the state remains conducive for dialogue which over the past few years has been," he said.

Referring to the recent sectarian clashes in parts of Budgam district of central Kashmir, the Chief Minister said sectarian clashes are not a new phenomenon in the state.

"In a run-up to elections, there has always been a concerted effort to polarise people on regional, caste and religious grounds. Don`t forget our worst example of polarisation in recent history, in 2008, in the run up to Assembly elections (following amaranth land row agitation).

"So there is no doubt that there is a design in what is happening whether it is in the Shia-Sunni clashes in Budgam, whether it is in the effort to foment Hindu-Muslim trouble in some parts of Jammu but we are aware of it and we will make sure that their designs will not succeed," he said.


First Published: Monday, August 5, 2013 - 21:05
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