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Mehbooba bats for resumption of India-Pakistan dialogue.

Peoples Democratic Party president and former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti Tuesday pitched for resumption of dialogue between India and Pakistan to “end the present phase of acrimony and confrontation between the two countries.”

A PDP spokesperson said in a statement that during her meeting with the union home minister Rajnath Singh here, Mehbooba said that “good relations with Pakistan have a positive impact on the ground situation in Jammu and Kashmir. It also encourages reconciliation among stakeholders within the state which automatically results in decline in alienation levels of the people.”

Rajnath was on a day-long visit to Kashmir during which he met various mainstream political leaders, including the PDP president.

Mehbooba, according to the statement, reminded Singh that in the past “when the two countries were in the best of relations, Jammu and Kashmir not only witnessed an era of minimal violence but also reconciliation and people’s active participation in the democratic and developmental processes.”

 Expressing concern over the prevailing situation in the state, the PDP president also impressed upon the union home minister to ensure that civilian killings and “collateral damage” during security operations are avoided at all costs, the statement read.“She told Singh that she believed every civilian killing not only adds to the alienation level of people here but also pushes the democratic and developmental process in the state to backburner. She asked the union home minister to direct all security agencies to exercise maximum restrain and strictly follow the laid down SoPs while dealing with security situations to ensure that civilian lives and properties are not put to any risk,” the PDP statement read.

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