JAMMU: Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh has criticised separatists for maintaining silence over killing of innocent people by ultras and said the “fight against terrorism” has entered a decisive phase in the state.
He also opposed a dialogue with separatists who “stay silent when innocent people are killed and give a call for strike when terrorists are eliminated”.
“We have entered into a decisive phase in this war. The reaction (from the ground and across the border) was on the expected line but we are in control (of the situation),” Singh on Saturday told reporters at a function here.
He said those ready to surrender are given an opportunity to live a peaceful life but those adamant to fight are meeting their end.
“Thirteen militants were eliminated (in a single day in south Kashmir on Sunday last) and another surrendered. It is not because of the weak policy,” the deputy chief minister said.
The Opposition wants the government to initiate dialogue, he said, adding, “(I want to ask) with whom. Those who are killing innocents or with those who are provoking youth for stone pelting through Hawala funding. When an innocent is killed, the Hurriyat maintains silence but when a terrorist is eliminated, it gives strike call.”
The deputy chief minister accused the opposition of doing politics over its demand for holding of dialogue with separatists and Pakistan.
He said the government was dealing strictly with militants and to silence “Pakistani” guns along the borders.
“However, the appointment of special representative on Kashmir Dineshwar Sharma is meant to involve those who are seeking solution of the problems through peaceful means,” Singh said.
The deputy chief minister said Pakistan and militants are demoralised due to the successes of the security forces and the frequent cross border firing is an indication of this.
“Pakistan is frustrated and so is its media and terrorists,” he said, adding, “Centre has extended the olive branch repeatedly to Pakistan but when it failed to understand the language of peace, we started reciprocating in the same language it understands.”
Contrary to the stand of the previous UPA government, he said the Narendra Modi government has time and again extended the hand of friendship to the neighbouring country. “What we got Uri and Pathankot (attacks). Then we carried out the surgical strike. If anyone wants peace, we will extend hand of friendship but if our peace move is sabotaged, we will not reciprocate with talks as terror and talks cannot go together,” he said.
On April 1, government forces had killed 13 militants in three encounters that also claimed the lives of 4 Army soldiers and civilians in Anantnag and Shopian districts.