Home Minister P Chidambaram on Wednesday asked Pakistan to stop cross border infiltration.
Srinagar: Union Home Minister P Chidambaram on Wednesday asked Pakistan to stop assisting terrorists and pushing cross border infiltration, while outlining the Centre’s policy aimed at finding a lasting solution to the problems in J&K.
Addressing a press conference in Srinagar, Union Home Minister spoke on a wide range of issues such as terrorism, law & order, need for a dialogue to end the political chaos, infiltration and socio-economic development of Jammu and Kashmir, which he termed as the “most valuable state”.
While cautioning media to avoid the unbiased and inaccurate reporting, Chidambaram said the situation in J&K has improved in the recent months and the Pakistan-backed militancy has reduced sharply.
“There is a marked improvement in the situation in J&K. Some five or six years ago there were thousands of incidents of militancy and infiltration. But today the security situation is much better. In the first nine month of this calendar year we have reported only 395 terrorism-related cases, which is the lowest in all these years,” he said.
Chidambaram said, “We don’t have any problem with the people of J&K. The main problems come from infiltration, which take place from the Pak occupied Kashmir (PoK). We know that the authorities there have been training our youths, brain washing them and assisting them in sneaking into India with specific task to unleash mayhem in the pursuit of a misguided jihad”
He agreed that there has been an increase in infiltration to India from Pakistan in the past two to three months.
"A spurt in infiltration has been seen after the General Elections and the number did rise in the last two to three months from Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) and Pakistan," Chidambaram told reporters here.
The Home minister, however, said that infiltration is likely to come down during the winter.
"We have not been able to completely stop infiltration but have brought it down due to strict vigilance by our security forces," he said.
Chidambaram said that terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir is solely due to infiltration across the border.
Elaborating specific details about casualties in J&K, he said, “We have reported 60 civilian deaths and 66 casualties in the security forces while dealing with militancy, and as many as 185 militants have been neutralised by the security forces in the past few months.”
Chidambaram also complimented the security forces for their role in reducing militancy and preserving peace in the state.
Policy of zero tolerance
Coming down heavily on Pakistan-sponsored militancy, Chidambaram said that there is no place for violence in J&K whatever may be the political cause. However, he assured that the Centre was fully committed for holding parleys with every section of the society here.
“Government will have dialogue with every section of political opinion in J&K. We acknowledge that there are several political parties, disorganised groups, some political outfits supporting secessionism in J&K but we are still ready to hold talks with each and every one to find a lasting solution for all problems,” he said.
“We are not afraid of holding dialogue, We are not shying away from talks, but this can not be done until there is a willingness and the right environment to do so, he said, adding, “ For this we need a quiet environment, quiet diplomacy and quiet political efforts.
“It can not be done in the full glare of media. Then it wont be a talk.....it would be... some sort of a political show, which we don’t want. But still, I assure that we want to hold talks and there will be dialogues with every section of J&K society in near future and whenever we reach a consensus it would be made public,” he informed the newsmen.
He also emphasised that any solution to Kashmir problem must also recognise the unique history and unique geography of the state.
Law and order
Lauding the role of J&K police in maintaining law and order in the militancy-hit state, Chidambaram said, “The J&K police have done a commendable job in restoring peace and tackling militancy. In the past few months, the J&K police have shown tremendous results. They are now leading their people by working in the frontline. The very own boys and girls of Jammu and Kashmir are dealing with the law and order situation here.”
“We have provided ample central paramilitary forces to help them in maintaining the law and order situation,” he stated.
Elaborating more, he said, “Over 7000 boys and girls from J&K have been recruited in the past few months and some 2000 are currently under training. They will be inducted in the J&K police after the completion of their training.”
However, he also praised the Army’s role in protecting the international order and the Line of Control. “It’s the Army’s duty to protect the country’s border and the BSF will keep assisting it in doing so,” he said.
“This has been our policy for J&K and we will stick to it as we have also persuaded the state govt to accept it in our collective endeavour in finding a perfect solutions to all that ails J&K” he said.
The Home Minister also outlined various schemes and projects launched by the Centre to push the economic development of Jammu and Kashmir. He said that the Centre has launched several projects aimed at making the state power-sufficient, creating job opportunities, improving the infrastructure, providing basic civic amenities to the people, developing the tourism and agriculture sector and upgrading the state of education in the state.
He informed that all these projects were being reviewed by top government officials at regular intervals and a Central team has been assigned to plug-in the existing gaps and monitor its speedier implementation.