In the government’s first outreach to Jammu and Kashmir’s political leadership in almost two years, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday held a crucial meeting with 14 leaders, including four former chief ministers, to chalk out the future course of action in the union territory. This was the first interaction between the Central leadership and the mainstream parties since August 5, 2019, when the Centre revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status under Article 370 and bifurcated it into two union territories, Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.
The prime minister, accompanied by Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir Manoj Sinha, received the leaders from eight parties, including the National Conference, the PDP, the BJP and the Congress, at his residence.
Today’s meeting on Jammu and Kashmir was conducted in a very cordial environment. Everyone expressed their commitment to democracy and the constitution. It was stressed to strengthen the democratic process in Jammu and Kashmir. We are committed to ensure all round development of J&K. The future of Jammu and Kashmir was discussed and the delimitation exercise and peaceful elections are important milestones in restoring statehood as promised in parliament: Union Home Minister Amit Shah
We requested PM that our fight will continue but it's essential to reverse some decisions that aren't at all in the interest of J&K. It was given the status of a UT, people don't like it. They want full statehood for J&K with J&K cadre restored. All leaders demanded full statehood for J&K. Both PM & HM said the work for elections and restoring statehood should start soon. Azad Sahib said that first statehood should be restored and then elections should be held. On this PM didn't say anything. We told PM that we don't stand with what was done on 5th Aug 2019. We're not ready to accept it. But we won't take law into hands. We'll fight this in court. We also told PM that there's been breach of trust b/w State & Centre. It's Centre's duty to restore it: Omar Abdullah
People of J&K are in a lot of difficulties after 5th Aug 2019. They're angry, upset & emotionally shattered. They feel humiliated. I told PM that people of J&K don't accept the manner in which Article 370 was abrogated unconstitutionally, illegally &immorally: Mehbooba Mufti, PDP
It was a good meeting, a good initiative. The Prime Minister heard all leaders. In response to them, he said, "let us move ahead": Ghulam Ahmad Mir, Congress on PM Modi- J&K leaders meeting
Almost all political parties came to a consensus that there should be peace in J&K & a govt should come there democratically. PM appealed to all the leaders that there would be peace only when everyone works together: Nirmal Singh, BJP after PM Modi-J&K leaders meet in Delhi
The process will come into effect about which people are hoping that they'll get a representative. Article 370 has been abrogated. It should not even be thought that it will ever come back: Kavinder Gupta, BJP after PM Modi-J&K leaders meet
All political parties presented their opinions. I think that in the time to come, political process is going to begin. Election will also be held after the delimitation process. Assembly will be constituted there once again: Kavinder Gupta, BJP after PM Modi-J&K leaders meet
All leaders of Jammu and Kashmir have been assured by PM Narendra Modi that all will work together for the future and betterment of J&K. PM Modi heard everyone and said that all steps will be taken for the development of the people of J&K: Ravinder Raina, J&K BJP chief
All leaders demanded statehood, to which PM Modi said, the delimitation process should conclude first and then Muzaffar Hussain Baig on PM's J&K meet other issues will be addressed. It was a satisfactory meeting. There was complete unanimity for restoring peace in Jammu and Kashmir: Muzaffar Hussain Baig on PM's J&K meet
PM said that there would be political differences but everyone should work in national interest so that people of J&K benefit. He stressed that atmosphere of safety & security needs to be ensured for all in J&K. PM said he wants to remove 'Dilli ki Duri' & 'Dil Ki Duri', sources said.
PM said that when people experience corruption-free governance, it inspires trust among the people and people also extend their co-operation to the administration and this is visible in J&K today, they added.
The development achieved by J&K was discussed in detail with implementation of many pro-people initiatives. PM expressed satisfaction with the acceleration of development in Jammu & Kashmir and said that it is creating new hope and aspirations among the people.
PM expressed happiness on commitment to Constitution &Democracy espoused by participants. He said even one death in J&K is painful&it's our collective duty to protect youth. He stressed that we need to give opportunities to J&K youth & they'll give back lots to our country.
It was discussed that elections can happen soon after delimitation & by & large most participants expressed willingness for it. PM emphasised the need to strengthen democracy at grassroots & work together with people of J&K to ensure their upliftment, sources said on all-party meet
The Home Minister said the government is committed to granting statehood to Jammu and Kashmir. All leaders demanded full-fledged statehood. We kept 5 demands in the meeting- grant statehood soon, conduct Assembly elections to restore democracy, rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits in J&K, all political detainees should be released and on domicile rules. Almost 80% of parties spoke on Art 370 but the matter is sub judice in court. Our demands included full-fledged statehood soon, elections to restore democracy, rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits, all political detainees to be released& land,employment guarantee: Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad after PM Modi-J&K leaders meet
The meeting was held in a very cordial manner. We came out quite positive that hopefully there will be some delivery for the people of Jammu and Kashmir: People's Conference leader Sajjad Lone PM Modi-J&K leaders meet
The talks were held in a good atmosphere today. The Prime Minister heard our issues of all leaders. PM said that election process will begin when delimitation process finishes. The PM asked all to participate in the delimitation process. We have been assured that this is the roadmap towards elections. PM also said that we are committed to the restoration of statehood: J&K Apni Party's Altaf Bukhari on PM Modi-J&K leaders meet
J&K all-party meeting with PM Modi over after over 3 hours.
J&K all-party meeting with PM Modi LIVE: Four former chief ministers of Jammu and Kashmir- Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti, Ghulam Nabi Azad- are participating in the all-party meet with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.| IN PICS
J&K all-party meeting with PM Modi LIVE: PM Modi's meeting with Jammu and Kashmir leaders is underway at the PM's residence in Delhi. Home Minister Amit Shah also present
PM Modi-J&K leaders meeting LIVE: I will speak in the meeting first and then interact with you all, Farooq Abdullah tells reporters before walking for the all-party meeting. "She is the president of her party, has every right to speak what she feels. Why should I comment," Abdullah said when asked about Mehbooba Mufti's 'talk with Pakistan too' remark.
PM Modi-J&K leaders meeting LIVE: The all-party meeting is scheduled to begin at 3 PM and PM Modi is likely to arrive by 3:10 PM. Coconut water, tea etc will be provided to leaders as refreshments after which there will be a photo session of the leaders with PM Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah, sources said. National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah is likely to speak first following which other leaders will present their views in the meeting one by one. Home Minister Amit Shah will address the leaders after they finish speaking. PM Modi is also likely to speak during the meeting before it concludes, reports India TV's Devendra Parashar.
PM Modi-J&K leaders meeting LIVE: Our expectations are that it should be a good beginning to resolve the issues, concerns of the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. Whatever has been done to us is not within the limits of the Constitution, says CPI-M leader Yousuf Tarigami ahead of all-party meeting with PM Modi. "Our rights guaranteed under the provisions of the Constitution of India have been snatched from us. We will demand the government and PM to reconsider and restore those rights which have been guaranteed by the Constituent Assembly of India," Tarigami added.
J&K all-party meeting LIVE: BJP leader and former Jammu and Kashmir deputy CM Kavinder Gupta has said that the party will put forth the issues concerning the people of the region in the meeting with PM Modi. We want people of both Jammu and Kashmir should treated equally if there is any decision regarding delimitation, Gupta told India TV.
J&K all-party meeting LIVE: Congress says it will raise the issue of statehood for Jammu and Kashmir in the meeting with PM Modi. "We are going to raise the state issue. People in the state are shocked after the developments in 2019. We'll wait for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's agenda for today's meeting and respond accordingly," Jammu and Kashmir Congress chief Ghulam Ahmad Mir said.
J&K all-party meeting LIVE: Omar Abdullah leaves his house in Delhi's Nizamuddin area to attend PM Modi's all-party meeting with leaders of Jammu and Kashmir. His father and former CM Farooq Abdullah has already reached Delhi from Srinagar for the meeting.
All-party meet LIVE: Prime Minister Narendra Modi is currently meeting Union Home Minister Amit Shah. The meeting is underway at the PM's residence where an all-party with Jammu and Kashmir leaders will take place. The meeting will begin at 3 PM. Shah will also attend the meeting.
All-party meet LIVE: Jammu and Kashmir Congress president Ghulam Ahmad Mir said that the party will demand from the Prime Minister to restore statehood to Jammu and Kashmir during an all-party meet later today. Mir and former CM Ghulam Nabi Azad will attend the meeting.
J&K all-party meet LIVE: Bhim Singh, Jammu and Kashmir National Panthers Party's president, said, "I am here as I'm invited (to join the All-Party Meeting called by Prime Minister Narendra Modi). The statehood of Jammu and Kashmir should be restored."
Congress to attend PM Modi's J-K all party meeting: The Congress party has decided to attend the all-party meeting convened by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi, with its leader GA Mir asserting that the restoration of full statehood of Jammu and Kashmir will be its "priority number one". READ MORE
J&K all-party meet LIVE: BJP national president JP Nadda is meeting party leaders from Jammu and Kashmir ahead of PM Modi's crucial all-party meet later today. Senior leaders Kavinder Gupta, Nirmal Singh, and Ravinder Singh are meeting Nadda.
J&K all-party meet LIVE
Dogra Front stages protest against Peoples Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti in Jammu. "This protest is against Mufti's statement which she gave after Gupkar meeting that Pakistan is a stakeholder in Kashmir issue. She should be put behind bars," says a protester.
All-party meet at 3 PM: Prime Minister Narendra Modi's all-party meet with Jammu and Kashmir leaders will begin at 3 pm at his official residence in Delhi.
All-party meet LIVE: The Jammu and Kashmir administration has sounded a high alert for the next 48 hours in the UT and suspended mobile internet services. Areas along the Line of Control have also been put on high alert.
J&K all-party meet: National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah has left for Delhi from Srinagar. He will reach here y 11 AM.
Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla is said to have reached out to J&K leaders for the meeting. Reports say that the Centre reached out to politicians to discuss the delimitation exercise in the Union Territory. According to multiple media reports, polls in Jammu and Kashmir could take place in November this year or early next year.
J&K's statehood to be restored ?
New Delhi has also dropped enough hints about J&K's statehood being restored soon and the Assembly elections can be held in 2022, soon after the delimitation exercise in the Union Territory is completed. The ball is in the court of the traditional politicians of the Valley now. They have to decide what they want, do they want to remain stranded in the past or want to move on.
Since the day Kashmiri leaders have received the invitation from New Delhi, they have been upbeat and look keen to attend the all-party meeting. If all goes well, a new beginning for them is on the cards and the ice is all set to melt.