Rajnath to undertake two-day visit to Kashmir, may hold talks

NEW DELHI(PTI): Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh will undertake a two-day visit to the Kashmir Valley from Wednesday to review the situation. He may also hold talks with cross section of people.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh

The move comes a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed “deep concern about and pain over” the situation there after meeting a joint Opposition delegation led by former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah. He asked all political parties to work together to find a “permanent and lasting” solution to the problems faced by the State.

This is the second visit of Mr. Singh in a month to the Valley, which has been witnessing unrest since July 8 when Hizb-ul Mujahideen ”commander” Burhan Wani was killed in an encounter with security forces.

As many as 65 people, including two policemen, have been killed and several thousand injured so far in violence.

The Home Minister had said the Centre wants an emotional relationship with the State and not just a need-based one. He had also said the Central government would talk to whosoever needed once peace and normalcy is restored in the State.

“As far as the Government of India is concerned, I want to make it clear that we don’t just want need-based ties, but to build an emotional relationship with Kashmir,” he said. He made a fervent appeal to the people of the State to help restore peace and normality.