Omar Hopeful about AFSPA Revocation, Says PM’s Visit is On

Srinagar - Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today said the Centre had to acknowledge that the controversial AFSPA had to be lifted from. He said the recent trend of young boys joining militant ranks was a serious concern and that the government would look into it. Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a function at SKICC here, Omar said it was the ongoing process and “we are in touch with GOI regarding the revocation of AFSPA”. When reminded of Army’s reservations about the revocation of AFSPA, Omar said, “This is government’s problem. We are hopeful GOI will take steps to revoke this act.” Commenting on the Prime Minister’s visit, Omar said, “Misinformation was spread that Prime Minister’s visit had been cancelled but at this point of time PM’s visit is very much on as we are in touch with PM’s office regarding the modalities of the visit. We are also in touch with Sonia Gandhi and probably she is also visiting the valley.” Meanwhile, National Conference senior leader Dr Mustafa Kamal commenting on the statement of Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde wherein he had said that before that (withdrawal of AFSPA), we have to consider all the stakeholders including Army Kamal said, “Army has no role in revocation of AFSPA. If army claims that Act is a need for them for counter-insurgency, then it would have saved four army men in Tral.” Time has come when GOI should revoke the law beyond the interests of Army as they used it as shield in their unlawful activities, said Kamal. “Army is trying to scuttle the revocation of the act to save its troops from accountability. Army is actually aware that if this law is revoked, they will be held answerable for their unlawful activities,” said Kamal.

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