Arriving here on a two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir regions, union home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde on Friday said the issues of infiltration and ceasefire violations were being discussed with Pakistan from time to time.
"Issues like ceasefire violations and infiltrations are matter of concern but they are being taken up with high commands at the right quarters," Shinde told reporters here this afternoon after reviewing the security situation on the Line of Control at Chakkan-da-Bagh in Poonch district and Octroi Post along the Indo-Pak international border in Ranbir Singh Pura Sector.
The union home minister said, "Earlier, we had taken up the issue with Pakistan interior minister Rehman Malik at Maldives during the SAARC meet but still it is being discussed with them."
"I have reviewed the fencing along the international border and we have a very powerful fencing," he said, adding that there might be some reasons of infiltrations and the union home ministry had reports about it.
"The issue will be taken up tomorrow (Saturday) at a joint committee meeting and of the Unified High Command Meeting at Srinagar," he added.
The union minister lauded the troops for being alert and performing their tasks in such terrains.
On security to panchs and sarpanchs and subsidy on LPG cylinders in Jammu and Kashmir, Shinde said the issues will be taken up with Chief Minister Omar Abdullah in a meeting on Saturday.
Earlier, during his visit to Chakkan-da-Bagh along LoC in Poonch, Shinde said there was no threat from China.
"There are no reports of intrusion from China in Ladakh and we are closely monitoring the situation," he added. He said the government wants to boost the cross LoC trade for better relations.
The union home minister also met some Congress delegations and paid obeisance at world famous Shri Raghunath Temple before flying back to the Valley. UNI
Assures central help for cross-LoC traders
Poonch: Assuring full help from the Centre, union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde on Friday promised to remove all hurdles in the path of strengthening of the cross-LoC trade with Pakistan.
"The cross-LoC trade would be further strengthened - the hurdles would be removed," Shinde told a delegation of cross-LoC traders at Chank-da-Bagh crossing point in Poonch.
Reviewing the cross-LoC trade, Shinde assured traders full help from the central government and promised them that he would raise their demands at the Centre. The home minister was flanked by his J&K counterpart Nasir Aslam Wani, the director general of police, BSF director general, IB special director and customs commissioner, besides divisional-level officers.
The cross-LoC traders' panel handed over a memorandum to the union home minister and also demanded setting up of a communication network between two sides, one time visa to assess the markets on both sides of LoC by traders of both sides, spot deliveries, increase in number of cross-LoC trade items and seizure of goods like almonds by customs departments. The union home minister also called for strict vigilance to stop smuggling from across the LoC.
The minister also held meetings with officers concerning the LoC trade and travel after conducting inspection of Trade Facilitation Centre (TFC). President of Cross-LoC traders Association Pawan Anand and general secretary Krishen Singh told Shinde that trade has been virtually dying down in view of restrictions on various items and cumbersome procedures
To discuss sarpanches' security issue with CM
Union home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said he would discuss the issue of providing security to sarpanches and panches with chief minister Omar Abdullah in an meeting scheduled to be held at Srinagar on Saturday morning.
"I will take up the issue with him," said Shinde, when asked about demands of sarpanches and panches.
A number of sarpanches and panches have resigned after being threatened by terrorists. They have been demanding security and also held meeting with Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi, who also visited Srinagar this month.
The chief minister has already discussed the matter with senior security officials and the government has decided to set up patrolling in the area which are terrorist infested.