Kashmiri Pandits seek govt permission to visit J&K


New Delhi: A group of Kashmiri Pandits is seeking government permission to visit Jammu and Kashmir and meet the political and religious leaders there to promote peace and amity in the Valley.

In the letter written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and the Jammu and Kashmir administration, Kashmiri Pandit Satish Mahaldar and his team said: “As a follow-up measure and in accordance with the wishes of our respected and beloved Prime Minister, a delegation of Kashmiri Pandits wants to go to Kashmir and meet various leaders, including religious leaders like Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, and civil society activists.”

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According to the letter, “This would be the first positive step towards building a positive inter-community relationship to promote peace and development in the Valley.”

“It would also ensure stability and help remove the fear of violence or war between communities. A responsible and positive inter-community relationship will enhance a peaceful atmosphere,” it added.

The Kashmir Valley has been under a security clampdown since the revocation of Article 370 — that accorded Jammu and Kashmir a special status — on August 5. All its political leaders, including former Chief Ministers Mehbooba Mufti, Farooq Abdullah and Omar Abdullah as well as separatist leaders are under house arrest.

On August 5, the government abrogated Article 370 and bifurcated Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories.