Traders Will Not Meet Home Minister In Violence-Hit Kashmir
In a setback to the government’s attempts to reach out to individuals of Kashmir, business bodies and leading trade here today refused to meet with Home Minister Rajnath Singh, who is on a two-day visit to review the situation in the violence- hit at Valley.
They had been invited by Mr Singh for a gathering to discuss the situation in Kashmir, which is under curfew for the last 15 days.
The minister arrived in Kashmir. He could be spending the assembly with different delegations and leaders of all political parties to seek their opinions on how the violence can be assessed. Apart from a high level security meeting in Srinagar, he could be also anticipated to meet Governor Narinder Nath Vohra and Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti.
“He’ll hear everybody and then he can go to Delhi and decide what the roadmap could be”, said Bali Bhagat, the state health minister.
Hitting out at the authorities, the Congress has called his visit a “cosmetic approach” that “will just not work.”
Kashmir Economic Alliance, Chamber Of Commerce and various hotel organizations and transportation bodies have boycotted the assembly call saying it’d be “pointless” when civilians are being killed and in shooting by security forces daily.
“They should first halt the killings and then we’ll meet the home minister. We are not against meeting anybody but how can we meet the Home Minister when forces are killing our children,” said Yasin Khan, president of Kashmir Economic Alliance.
All the 10 districts of Kashmir valley are under curfew for last 15 days. Web and cellular phone services have also been frozen across the valley.
In 2010 also, we met then home minister P Chidambaram. But nothing occurred,” said Siraj Ahmad of Kashmir Hoteliers Association.
Now some people who met with Mr Singh, hid their faces as they entered the Nehru Guest house to meet with him. Media was not permitted to cover assemblies.