Afspa will go in my tenure: Omar Abdullah | india | Hindustan Times
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Afspa will go in my tenure: Omar Abdullah

Chief minister Omar Abdullah today hinted at the lack of consensus over withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) but assured "to lift the same during his tenure." Peerzada Ashiq reports.

india Updated: Aug 15, 2012 19:27 IST
Peerzada Ashiq

Chief minister Omar Abdullah on Wednesday hinted at the lack of consensus over withdrawal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) but assured "to lift the same during his tenure."

"We wanted to reach a position where we could revoke the AFSPA from some areas of the state. But, unfortunately, we have not reached that point yet," said Omar at Srinagar's Bakshi Stadium, where he addressed the Independence Day gathering.

In 2011, Omar promised to revoke the AFSPA, which gives a long hand of impunity to the army during counter-insurgency operations, within a few weeks.

His announcement invited negative response of the army and the defence ministry, resulting in stalling of any such move.

The chief minister, however, said on Wednesday he has not stopped his advocacy for the revocation.

"The issue is alive. The gradual revocation of the AFSPA will start during his government's tenure," he said, adding "the dialogue on the matter was going on with the ministry of defence and the Army".

He also appealed separatists "to utilize the prevailing favourable atmosphere and discuss their viewpoint across the table."

"Gun or money can never solve this issue. Dialogue process is only way forward to address it effectively and meaningfully," said Omar.

The chief minister substantiated the decline in violence by listing figures from the past three years of militancy in the state.

"As against 370 violence incidents in 2010, the militancy related incidents in 2011 were 190 and in 2012 these were only 90," said Omar.

"Civilian killings in militancy related incidents in 2010 were 50, these stood at 31 in 2011 and 8 in 2012. He said that 70 security personnel were martyred in 2010 while the number of martyrs was 33 in 2011 and 7 in 2012," he added.

Omar said he was committed to take peace dividends to every household.