Home Indian Muslim No public debate on AFSPA revocation: Omar

No public debate on AFSPA revocation: Omar


Srinagar : Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Monday said discussions on the partial revocation of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) between the state and central governments were on and he did not favour a public debate on the sensitive issue.

“The process is on, the discussions are going on and we do not want any public debate on this issue,” Omar Abdullah said during the inauguration of an electric power grid station in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district.

The chief minister dispelled media reports that the move to partially revoke AFSPA from certain areas of the state had met with stiff resistance from some quarters.

“Nobody has opposed the move to partially revoke AFSPA. Yes, apprehensions have been expressed over the issue and we are trying to address those apprehensions,” he said.

The chief minister said a joint team of state government officials would soon visit Delhi to carry forward the discussions with the central government.

Media reports here said a five-member team of state government officials, including State Commissioner/Secretary (Home) B.R. Sharma and Director General of Police (DGP) Kuldeep Khoda would soon visit Delhi to discuss the matter with union home and defence ministry officials.

The state government has proposed revocation of AFSPA — which gives sweeping powers to the army — from Srinagar and Badgam towns in the Valley and Jammu and Samba towns in the Jammu region.

However, the move has been strongly resisted by the army, which says it would impede the operational capabilities of the security forces.

The chief minister has asserted that the army has not operated in these areas for many years. He also said AFSPA could always be reimposed if the security situation deteriorated.