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Centre has turned down demand for unilateral ceasefire
5/15/2018 11:01:17 PM
It is formal. The central Government has rejected the demand for unilateral ceasefire which was voiced by various political parties, especially the PDP and the National Conference. Even when Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti, who heads a coalition Government in alliance with the BJP had requested the centre for favourable consideration of the demand which could establish her leadership but she seems to have been insulted by the way the Government of India rejected the demand. It may embolden the National Conference which is trying to regain the support of the voter bank in the Kashmir valley. And the way the centre has turned down the demand for unilateral ceasefire seems to have further weakened the base of the PDP in the Kashmir valley but may slightly improve the position of the BJP in the region of Jammu. That is the reason that despite the support for the demand by none other than the Deputy Chief Minister, Kavinder Gupta, who belongs to the BJP leaders of the state unit of the BJP had conveyed their opposition to unilateral ceasefire to the centre. The Government of India has formally rejected Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti's call for ceasefire in the State to ease tension during Ramadan and the Amarnath yatra. Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said, "Indian Army has to firmly handle any terrorism which threatens the peace and harmony of Jammu and Kashmir as a state and of the rest of country. The Army's position is that it has to be firm on terrorism."She said Jammu and Kashmir was an integral part of India. "Terrorism has to be eliminated by the Indian Army for which firm action is required," she said. "There will be no let up on terror and we will take action every minute." Mehbooba's call for a ceasefire had come in an All Party Meeting convened on May 9 to discuss the worsening security situation in Jammu and Kashmir amid civilian deaths in gunfights. Sitharaman's statement comes days after Mehbooba claimed the participants had agreed to appeal to GoI to announce a ceasefire within the State from the fasting month of Ramadan, starting later this week, to the end of the Amarnath yatra to ease tension during these periods significant for devotees. "Everyone was concerned about the present situation (in the Valley), about the killings, the youth picking up guns, stone-pelting which also took the life of a tourist from Tamil Nadu," Mehbooba had said after the four-hour meeting. "Everyone agreed that we should appeal to the Government of India to consider a ceasefire like the unilateral ceasefire in (former Prime Minister Atal Bihari) Vajpayee's time. "The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leader had said the centre should think of a ceasefire so that the people could get some relief "because they are facing many difficulties due to gunfights, crackdowns and search operations". The BJP which is also in alliance with PDP in Jammu and Kashmir, too, had rejected her proposal. "What guarantee will there be that the Army will not be attacked?" Indian Army Chief, General Bipin Rawat had asked. In fact the PDP's demand should been supported by militants and the separatists.The two sectors remained passive spectators of the the tug of war between the PDP and the centre.Had these two sections announced that they too will reciprocate if the centre declared unilateral ceasefire possibly the Government of India would have accepted the demand of the APM.
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