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Omar Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti Omar Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti

MHA ‘reaches out’ to Omar Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti

Aug 25, 2019

Union ministry of home affairs (MHA) has reached out to detained J&K leaders Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti in the last two days through a few top intelligence officers, seeking the two former CMs’ cooperation in maintaining peace after they are released, sources said on Saturday.

Though there is no official confirmation or denial of any such meeting, Omar’s National Conference (NC) has rubbished such reports, saying there is “absolutely no basis” for these.

PDP sources, however, said that some “government officials” did meet the two leaders in custody and asked them to help in restoration of normalcy in J&K, particularly in the Valley, in case they are set free from detention.

“But both the leaders refused to budge from their stand against Parliament’s decision to nullify Article 370 ,” a senior PDP leader said on condition of anonymity.

Omar and PDP chief Mehbooba have been in detention since August 5 when the Centre abrogated the state’s special status under Article 370 of the Constitution. While Omar is kept at Hari Niwas Palace on Gupkar Road, Mehbooba has been detained at the JK Tourism Development Hut in Cheshmashahi in Srinagar.

Both Omar and Mehbooba have been opposing scrapping of J&K’s special status and reorganization of the state into two Union Territories.

Both the former CMs are believed to have been given the offer of release from detention on the condition that they would not organize any public meeting or issue statements against the new political development in J&K.

Political analyst Majid Hyderi said now it was immaterial for the people in the Valley whether Omar and Mehbooba were released or not. “Kashmir people are an angry lot and they seem to have lost faith in mainstream politics now.

Even if Omar and Mehbooba are released from detention, people will not listen to them. They are discredited leaders, because both took BJP’s support at some point or the other when they needed to grab power in J&K,” Hyderi said.

Meanwhile, the authorities on Saturday allowed meetings between the other detained mainstream political leaders and their relatives at the Centaur Lake View hotel on the banks of Dal Lake. Dozens of them are currently lodged in the Centaur Lake hotel.

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