Following the clashes spread across the valley afetr the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday chaired a high-level meeting to review the law and order situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
Rajnath Singh reached out to various political leaders, including Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and National Conference leader and former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah to discuss with them the ground situation in the state and the government’s response.
“The home minister spoke to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and many others on the issue. It was like reaching out to all concerned to ensure peace in the valley,” a Home Ministry source told IANS.
The minister urged all political parties to “speak in one voice” over Kashmir as the militancy-hit state had witnessed heightened tension and violence following Wani’s killing on Friday last.
“The minister apprised them of the situation there and discussed ways and means to restore normalcy in Jammu and Kashmir,” the source said.
Congress sources said the party has decided to downplay the criticism of the government over the Jammu and Kashmir situation especially after the home minister explained some strategic details of the operation that killed terrorist Burhan Wani. In a statement Sonia Gandhi said, “There can be no compromise on matters relating to National Security…Terrorism must be dealt with firmly.”
Omar Abdullah tweeted that the home minister had spoken to him and said his party “will play whatever role is required to help normalise the situation.” The onus to ensure that lay on the state and central government he said.
At least 23 people have been killed in clashes between protesters and security forces and curfew imposed in the valley since Saturday.