Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today expressed happiness over what he called the central government’s acknowledgement that the “controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) has to be lifted from Jammu and Kashmir”.
Talking to media persons on the sidelines of a function in Srinagar, the chief minister said the state government was in touch with the centre regarding the revocation of the AFSPA.
Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said recently that all the stakeholders in Kashmir and the northeast would be taken on board before taking a final decision on the revocation of the act.
The AFSPA gives sweeping powers to the army and the paramilitary in troubled states for arrest, search and seize operations.
Omar Abdullah also confirmed that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s scheduled visit to the state June 25 has not been cancelled as reported by a section of media, quoting Professor Saif-ud-Din Soz, chief of the state Congress.
“The prime minister’s visit stands as on date and we are working out the modalities with the Prime Minister’s Office,” Omar Abdullah said.
The chief minister said UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi was also likely to visit the state with the prime minister.