Arguing for setting up of a truth and reconciliation commission in J&K on the lines of South Africa, chief minister Omar Abdullah gave a new twist to his oft-repeated demand on Friday saying it must have mandate to probe genesis of militancy, as well as, empowered to probe cases in Pakistan administered Kashmir. “I want a stamp of both India and Pakistan on such commission to reveal the truth,” he said.
Participating in a meet-the-press here, Abdullah also ruled out possibility of any future alliance with the NDA. He said the National Conference in the past had tied up with the NDA-led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee. “I don’t see a leader like the stature of Vajpayee in the BJP right now, so there is no possibility of any kind of relationship in future,” he said.
Batting for the removal of Armed Forces Special Powers Act from some selected areas like Srinagar, Jammu and Samba districts, he said the level of violence was barely five percent against what it was in 2002. Further, he said it was a ripe time for the Kashmir Pandits to return home.
Asked about inordinate delay in the cabinet expansion, Abdullah passed the buck to the alliance partner, the Congress. “Once I get the names from the Congress. Some of the portfolios, are lying with me simply because no name is being sent by the Congress,” he said.
Ruling out the possibility of extending 73rd amendment to empower panchayats, chief minister said they had enough powers. It was only the matter of their evolution and recognition of their role in the basic democratic functioning, which he said will take time.