While Opposition is in a rush to hold a conclave to find alternatives to the ongoing unrest in the valley, of which ‘street and student’ protests were the main highlights, besides army’s cordon and search operations back in force, the question remains whether that calms the street anger down or will it still be a catch 22 situation!
The former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is spearheading the committee to find ways and means to address the present crisis of violent protests. JDU leader Sharad Yadav, CPI leader D Raja, CPI (M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury and NC leader Farooq Abdullah have endorsed the move.
Expected to be held in June before the Monsoon Session, the idea is to build pressure on the present government to take political initiatives to restore peace in the valley. Since, the all party delegation that visited the valley last year failed to win confidence of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, the opposition believes in revival of dialogue process. Barring separatists, like minded political parties, civil society members, intellectuals and writers will be among the invitees.
In 2003, a similar attempt was made when the state was ruled by PDP-Congress coalition and Congress President Sonia announced packages like education quota for students from Jammu and Kashmir in the Congress-administered states and measures to boost tourism in the state. At that time PDP was there to stand by any decisions made by Congress when BJP was in the opposition and now here stands PDP, in coalition with the former opposition BJP – the likelihood of opposing any alternatives proposed in the Conclave are certain. While BJP is of the idea not to engage separatists in any talks, it will be interesting to see what comes out when the conclave lets the ‘cat out of the bag’ and at the same time what former Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah has on ‘cards’!