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Soldiers given free hand to eliminate militancy in Valley: BJP

SRINAGAR: A day after the coalition government ended in Jammu and Kashmir, the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) on Wednesday said that security forces were given free hand to eliminate militancy in the Valley.
BJP state president Ravinder Raina (MLA) said that situation was “deteriorating” in Kashmir Valley.
“The Governor Rule has been imposed to restore rule of law. We pulled out from the alliance as the situation was not improving in the Valley,” Raina said in a press conference.
“There will be no restrictions on security forces to eliminate terrorists. Security forces have been given a free hand to eliminate terrorists, who are threat to sovereignty and killing civilians,” he said. “Government will strictly deal with anti-national forces and those who want to turn JK into graveyards.”
He was flanked by former deputy chief minister Kavindar Gupta and chief spokesperson of BJP in JK Sunil Sethi.
The BJP on Tuesday withdrew its support from the alliance. Following which, Mehbooba Mufti submitted her resignation to Governor N N Vohra. While President Ram Nath Kovind on Wednesday approved imposition of Governor Rule in the state.
The BJP state president said that they tried to improve the situation for four months. “Instead the situation got deteriorated. The Centre took the initiative of Ramzan ceasefire but the terrorists continued targeting civilians and security forces. There was a selective targeting even a journalist was also killed. Pakistan also did the violation of Ramzan ceasefire,” he said.
Asked why the BJP took the decision after three years when there was no end of killings in Kashmir, he replied, “We tried to restore the normalcy. We did not take the immediate decision but tried to establish the rule of law then decided to end the alliance. There are some Kashmir based parties who did not want anti-terror operations to continue.”
He claimed that BJP was not power hungry. “For BJP, nation stands first. We did not form the government for the sake of power but we could not accomplish our 44+mission in Jammu and Kashmir. We got a thumping majority in Jammu while the PDP got the mandate in Kashmir. It was our constitutional obligation to form the alliance government with the PDP,” he said.
He said that militants were targeting the nationalist forces in Kashmir. “They targeting Jammu bus stand. They killed journalist, army man Aurangzeb, DSP Ayoub Pandit, SHO Fayaz, lieutenant Fayaz and others,” he said.
Raina said that BJP will celebrate Shama Prasad Mukherjee divas in Jammu on June 23. “He fought and sacrificed his life for JK’s complete integration to the country.”
He said Assembly was suspended but not dissolved. “Nothing can be said about the future.”
He said that BJP ministers worked for the development of Jammu and Ladakh region. “There were some departments held by PDP ministers where we faced problems in implementation,” he said.
On National Conference vice president Omar Abdullah’s demand for dissolution of the assembly due to the apprehension of horse trading, he said, “It is his personal view. Those who indulge in such practice speak such things. The BJP never talks about it and we don’t have this motive.” He avoided answering questions on Article 370 which gives special status to the state.
Asked about Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti’s statement that her party acted according to its agenda and ensured protection of Article 370, ceasefire and withdrawal of cases against stone-pelters, Gupta said nothing was possible without the support of BJP.
“We supported the PDP in restoration of normalcy. We felt that some ministries including the home ministry (which was under chief minister) failed to take tough decisions … and demonstrated soft approach and registered FIRs against the security personnel,” he said.