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Jaitley in Jammu: Stone-pelters no satyagrahis, some don’t realise it

NEW DELHI: Even as Union minister Arun Jaitley described stone-pelters as “not satyagrahis but aggressors”, a delegation of Opposition parties from the Valley will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday to urge him to find a political solution by initiating a dialogue with all stakeholders in the unrest-hit state.

The delegation led by former chief minister Omar Abdullah of the National Conference will apprise Modi of the ground situation in the state and take up the use of pellet guns by security forces which has blinded several protesters and pitch for an end to “mass harassment, raids and arrests” as these have worsened an already volatile situation.

CPM MLA Mohammed Yusuf Tarigami, state Congress president G A Mir and some independent MLAs will also be part of the delegation. The delegation met Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Sunday. “Discussed the current political crisis in J and K with a delegation of opp(osition) leaders from the state led by @abdullah_omar [Omar Abdullah],” the Congress leader tweeted after the meeting. On Saturday the delegation met President Pranab Mukherjee requesting him to urge the Centre to find a solution to the present crisis politically.

Speaking at BJP rally on the outskirts of Jammu on Sunday, Jaitley slammed Pakistan over the current unrest, saying it was “attacking the integrity of India” in a “new way” after failing to snatch the state by waging wars and fuelling trouble ever since Partition in 1947.

Referring to stone-pelters, he said, “They are not satyagrahis but aggressors. If a police post manned by 10 police personnel is attacked by 2,000 stone-pelters, it is an attack, but some people do not realise it.” He asked the people of the state to stand with the country in the “struggle against the separatists” so that “this new phase of Pakistani strategy of war is defeated this time as well”.

Listing Prime Minister Modi’s three priorities for the state, he said, “There will be no compromise on the security and integrity of the country and no compromise with the people who indulge in violence.

“Secondly, as Jammu and Kashmir has faced violence and wars, it needs development which was denied for past 60 years by National Conference and Congress governments. Thirdly, Jammu, being the support base of the BJP, needs added attention.”

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