JAMMU, Apr 1: Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh said here today that the decision to hold or not to hold talks with Pakistan is purely Centre’s prerogative and only the Government of India is in a position to take a call on this.
Responding to queries by media persons on the sidelines of the BJP State Working Committee meeting at Suchetgarh, near here, when asked to comment on Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti’s statement that India should hold talks with Pakistan at the earliest, Dr Jitendra Singh said, he is not qualified to answer whether or not and when India should hold talks with Pakistan because he is not privy to the sensitive inputs and confidential reports, based on which, the Union Ministry of External Affairs and Union Ministry of Home Affairs take a view. However, he said, any decision in this regard is beyond the purview of the State Government.
Taking a dig, without naming any political party, Dr Jitendra Singh said, even if we go by the ideological positions taken by Kashmir-centric political parties espousing demands like autonomy etc, these parties have also, in their policy documents, left the management of foreign affairs to the Government of India.
Complementing the security forces for their success in eliminating eight militants in a single operation in the Kashmir valley today, Dr Jitendra Singh said, “our security forces are doing a commendable job and the nation is eternally indebted to them.” He predicted that “we are approaching the last phase of militancy.” Meanwhile, he said, the common man in Kashmir, particularly the youth, has already moved ahead.
About the deliberations of the BJP State Working Committee meeting, Dr Jitendra Singh said, the coalition Government in the State has completed three years in office, even though it was being claimed by the opposition parties, particularly Congress and National Congress, that this Government will not last even three days.
Dr Jitendra Singh said, the Party Working Committee meeting is a part of BJP’s traditional curriculum wherein, after every three months, this offers an opportunity to retrospect on the activities and experiences of the last 12 weeks and to chalk out a future road map accordingly.