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Home > News > Report

Defence minister to visit J&K over troops issue

Onkar Singh in New Delhi | July 24, 2007 23:34 IST

Defence Minister A K Antony would visit Srinagar [Images] on Thursday to take stock of the ground level situation about the People's Democratic Forum demand that India should withdraw troops from some of the key districts of the state.

Former Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed had made this demand during his meeting with Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh [Images] during the round table conference.

On Tuesday, Defence Secretary Shekhar Dutt called a meeting of the key officers of the defence, home ministry and officials of Jammu and Kashmir [Images] associated with maintenance of law and order in the state and reviewed the situation for more than four hours.

Amongst those present were the internal security in charge of the home ministry, officials from intelligence bureau and RAW, officers from army and CRPF and Rashtriya Rifles, state government's home ministry officials and newly appointed state police director general Kuldeep Khuda.

It was decided that the troops should be relocated wherever possible and the paramilitary forces should share the public accommodation rather than have separate accommodations of their own. But the committee rejected the PDP's main demand of reconfiguration of troops in view of improve situation in the valley.

The meeting took place after Dr Singh wrote to PDP that the government would consider the demands and a meeting would be held soon to take a decision. Final decision about the troop withdrawal has been left to Antony.

Bharatiya Janata Party has condemned the letter written by Dr Singh and asked him how he could compromise the unity and integrity of the country when terrorists are throwing hand grenades at the pilgrims visiting the Amarnath Shrine.

"Under no circumstances should the unity and integrity of the nation be compromised," Ravi Shankar Prasad told rediff.com.





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