he issue of 10-day-old unrest in Kashmir resonated in Rajya Sabha on the opening day of the Monsoon session (July 18), with the House taking up urgent discussion. The opposition slammed the government and pressed for holding an all-party meet while pitching for a political solution rather than using “barrel of the gun”. The opposition, while attacking Pakistan for fanning trouble in Kashmir, asked the government to initiate a political process and direct security forces to exercise restraint while dealing with protests.
Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad said while his party stands with the Modi government and the coalition in the state in dealing firmly with militancy, the “excessive use” of force against the common citizens, including children and women, is not acceptable. Leader of House Arun Jaitley admitted that the situation in Kashmir was a “matter of concern” but rejected the contention that the violence in the valley was a result of the BJP getting into power at the state. Asserting that efforts are underway to restore normalcy at the earliest, he said the entire country should speak in one voice at this time and common man should not be made to suffer there. Asking the youth to stay away from the agitation which is being held against the killing of a militant, he said, “When thousands of people attack the police, then understandably, there will be action. The fight is between the country and the separatists and common people are standing with the country which is in national interest.”
“Whatever is happening in Kashmir is Pakistan-sponsored. The name is ‘Pakistan’, but its acts are ‘na-pak’ (not pious),” Home Minister Rajnath Singh said. Rejecting ‘plebiscite’ demands as an “outdated” idea, the government asserted that Kashmiris are “our own people” who are being “misguided” as it blamed Pakistan for the unrest in the valley and said all parties will be taken along in dealing with the situation. Replying to the debate, Rajnath Singh affirmed that while militancy will be dealt with sternly, there should be “no instant” use of bullets while dealing with mobs which should first be tackled by the use of teargas and water cannons. The use of pellet guns, which have been blamed for most civilian injuries, would be looked into, regarding which he will talk to Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, he said.
[Source:- Times Of India]