Chidambaram speaks to Jaitley, Omar to defuse tension

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New Delhi, Jan 24 (PTI) In a bid to defuse tension, HomeMinister P Chidambaram today spoke to BJP leader Arun Jaitleyand Chief Minister Omar Abdullah after J-K authorities stoppedBJP leaders at Jammu airport ahead of a planned hoisting oftricolour in Srinagar''s Lal Chowk on Republic Day.

Chidambaram phoned Omar and took stock of the situationarising out of the arrival of Jaitley and party colleaguesSushma Swaraj and Ananth Kumar at the Jammu airport and thedecision of local authorities not to allow them to enter thecity, sources said.

The Chief Minister told the Home Minister that the twotop BJP leaders would not be allowed to attend a public rallyin Jammu as part of the BJP''s controversial ''Ekta Yatra''.

Following Chidambaram''s request, Omar agreed to sendstate Chief Secretary S S Kapoor and DGP Kuldip Khoda to talkto Jaitley and Swaraj and persuade them to abandon their plan.

In his conversation with Jaitley, Chidambaram requestedhim to respect the wishes of the Chief Minister and return toDelhi to defuse tension in the state, they said.

Efforts are also being made to allow Jaitley and Swarajto speak to a small group of people and a few journalistsbefore their return to the national capital, the sources said.

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