Time not right to lift AFSPA in J&K, says Rajnath Singh

SRINAGAR (TIP): Union home minister Rajnath Singh on July 2 ruled out revocation of the draconian Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from Jammu & Kashmir, saying the situation was not conductive for it.

“The situation should be such and I pray to the Almighty that AFSPA should not be needed anywhere in the country. We will need cooperation of one and all to achieve this goal,” Singh told reporters after praying at the Amarnath cave shrine in South Kashmir Himalayas.

Singh ruled out talks with the Kashmiri separatists as well. “We are ready to listen (and) talk to anyone but anti-national activities should be opposed and boycotted.”

The home minister said he had no reason to believe the PDP-BJP state government would not last its full term due to differences.

He said the Centre was sensitive to Jammu & Kashmir’s problems and assured maximum possible assistance to the victims of last year’s floods that killed 300 people and affected over a million.

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“I want to assure the state government of maximum possible assistance for relief and rehabilitation,” Singh said.

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