The inter-regional discontent witnessed in Jammu and Kashmir over the past decade took centrestage at the two-day meet of the Justice Sagir Ahmed committee, while the Centre-state relationship in the J&K context suffered a set back.
The regional discourse reached its crescendo when Panthers legislature party leader, Harshdev Singh, staged a dharna against “suppression of democracy” in the state and discrimination against Jammu on the final day of the committee’s hearing.
However, the development led to the representatives of National Conference and CPM seeking a more pragmatic approach to address the issue of regional discrimination. They were of the view that the issue should be resolved without rancour and politicizing the subject.
While, Former finance minister and National Conference leader A R Rather said that the center-state relationship is a crucial issue and no provocative statements should be issued by anyone, CPM's Mohammed Yusuf Tarigami the committee should evolve a constitutional structure where all are provided equal opportunities in the state.
Senior Peoples Democratic Party leader Rafiq Hussain Khan pitched for strengthening secularism by ensuring the return of the displaced Kashmiri Pandits to the Valley.
The committee is now faced with a daunting task of scripting a consensus from diverse shades of political opinions. Indications are that it will prepare a draft paper on the basis of the discourse. However, the exercise will be confined only to the mainline political parties as the separatist groups such as the Hurriyat factions have boycotted all such deliberations.