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Kashmir encounters do not signify return of militancy in J&K: CM

india Updated: Jan 09, 2010 14:22 IST

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Downplaying the terrorist encounter at Lal Chowk in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Saturday said security forces engaged the militants on the basis of credible intelligence inputs and the incidents did not signify revival of militancy.

"Both the operations were initiated by the security forces and not terrorists. There were credible intelligence information," he told reporters here, contending that the incidents got so much attention only because it took place in Srinagar.

These were part of surgical strikes, he said.

Abdullah said though he could not claim that militancy had died down in Kashmir, violence was prevalent in the state as much as in any other part of the country, including the Maoist-affected states.

"This should not be a reason for investors to shy away from the state," he said earlier in an emotional appeal to delegates at the Pravasi Bhartiya Divas here. "Kashmir is more than just a beautiful or a dangerous place."

"If violence doesn't stop you from investing in Maoist-hit states, then why not (invest in) Kashmir," he questioned, adding that Jammu and Kashmir was suffering because people had a perception about it being a terrorist-affected state.

In the Lal Chowk encounter, security personnel stormed a hotel where terrorists had taken shelter on being challenged and gunned down two militants on Thursday, while on Friday two terrorists were killed in an encounter in Pulwama district in south Kashmir.