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Kashmir unrest: Mehbooba Mufti convenes all-party meet in Srinagar, National Conference to boycott

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has called an all-party meeting in Srinagar today to discuss the prevailing law and order situation in the valley and measures to be taken to restore peace and normalcy.

India TV Politics Desk [ Updated: July 21, 2016 8:26 IST ]
Mehbooba Mufti
Mehbooba Mufti

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has called an all-party meeting in Srinagar today to discuss the prevailing law and order situation in the valley and measures to be taken to restore peace and normalcy.

An official spokesman of the government had informed on Monday that the invitation has been extended to all the political parties including PDP, BJP, National Conference and Congress.

Ram Madhav, national general secretary of the BJP and party in charge of Kashmir affairs, has reached here to discuss the prevailing situation in the Valley with the CM.

Opposition National Conference, however, said that there was ‘no effective leadership’ in the state government and refused to participate in an all-party meeting.

Party leader Ali Mohammed Sagar said that until a credible, effective and humane leadership is re-established in the state, the all-party meeting would prove to be a meaningless exercise.

Sagar said it was "extremely unfortunate" that the Chief Minister was calling a meeting of all political parties "almost two weeks" after unrest hit the Valley following the July 8 killing of Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani.

"In the meantime, the number of dead and injured has continued to rise. It would have been better if the Chief Minister had responded to our party's offer of support earlier instead of waiting for the suffering and misery of the people to reach this level," Sagar said.

The party also cited statements from some PDP leaders, including that of lawmaker Muzaffar Hussain Beigh, that "have not only added to the confusion but have significantly weakened the institution and office of the Chief Minister".

Beigh had expressed doubts over the operation that killed Wani and alleged that the security agencies had kept Mehbooba Mufti in the dark over it.

"This leads one to conclude that (Mehbooba) Mufti does not even command the loyalty of her police force, much less the loyalty of the people," Sagar said.

"Similarly the assertion by (Beigh) crediting Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) with reducing excessive use of force further weakened the image of the Chief Minister who is seen as a mute spectator, immune to the bloodshed and suffering," Sagar added.

The National Conference also castigated the Chief Minister over "mishandling" the media by first enforcing a ban on newspapers, which was later contradicted by her advisor Amitabh Mattoo.

"Until such time a credible, effective and humane leadership is re-established in the state this all-party meeting will prove to be a meaningless exercise."

Meanwhile, life remained paralysed in the Valley on Thursday for the 14th day as authorities continued to impose curfew following extension in the separatists called protest shutdown. Separatist leaders, including Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Yasin Malik has announced an extension in the protest shutdown till Monday.

The violence started on July 9, a day after Burhan Wani was killed in a gunfight with the security forces. 45 people including 43 civilians and two local policemen have been killed in the Valley.

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