Kishtwar violence: Centre defends Omar Abdullah Govt

Responding to allegations made by Arun Jaitley of BJP who was stopped from visiting strife-torn Kishtwar of Jammu and Kashmir, P Chidamabaram said it wasn’t prudent of political leaders to visit area.

Zee Media Bureau/Hemant Abhishek

New Delhi: Responding to allegations made by Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley of the BJP who was stopped from visiting strife-torn Kishtwar district of Jammu and Kashmir on Sunday, Finance Minister P Chidamabaram on Monday said it wasn’t prudent of political leaders to visit the area.

Chidambaram defended the Omar Abdullah government`s move, hinting that visits made by political leaders could further fuel tension in the area, and said, "It wasn’t the right time for Jaitley to visit Kishtwar. Only once situation gets normal will leaders be allowed to visit the area.”

Updating the House on the current situation in the Kashmir Valley, he said, “Army was called in after incidents of violence were reported, and no untoward case has been reported after armed forces stepped in.”

Justifying the steps taken by J&K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, Chidambaram said, “Tension in Kishtwar is not related to terrorism; scuffles during procession led to violence.

“In view of the situation, curfew was clamped by state government in eight districts of J&K,” he added.

Replying to concerns raised by Jaitley, Chidambaram said the loss of lives in the clashes was regretted. “Not Hindu, not Muslim, lives of three Indians was lost and we deeply regret that.”
He was responding to questions raised by Arun Jaitley.

Jaitley had said, “Jammu and Kashmir is not the private property of one family. Even media has kept a stunning silence. It requires investigation.”

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