All-Party meeting on Amarnath row begins

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New Delhi, Aug 6 (UNI) The crucial all-party meet, called by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the Amarnath land transfer row, began here today amid speculation that some participants would press for state Governor N N Vohra's removal.

The meeting at the Prime Minister's residence was attended by leaders of almost all major political parties.

The meeting was held even as one person was killed and another wounded in firing by the Army on protesters in Kathua district.

People defied curfew restrictions at many other places in the curfew-bound Jammu demanding restoration of forest land to Sri Amarnath Shrine Board.

The Prime Minister will brief the political leaders about the steps being taken by the Centre to maintain communal harmony across the country, especially in Jammu and Kashmir, which has been witnessing violence on the issue during the past two weeks.

Leaders of national and regional political parties, including the National Conference and the People's Democratic Party (both from the state), had been invited for the meeting.

Congress President Sonia Gandhi was also present.

Home Secretary Madhukar Gupta and Defence Secretary Vijay Singh visited Jammu early this week for an on-the-spot assessment of the situation there.

UNI RB RP NS1752

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