Decision to revoke Disturbed Areas Act lies with JK govt: Omar

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Jammu, Feb 19 (PTI) Rejecting any difference with theCentre on the issue of revoking Armed Forces Special PowersAct and the Disturbed Areas Act, Jammu and Kashmir ChiefMinister Omar Abdullah today said the decision to withdraw DAAlay with the state government.

"I don''t require anybody''s recommendation. Pleaseunderstand at the end of the day Army is tool of Centralgovernment," Omar told reporters when asked whether hisgovernment needed recommendation from the Centre to revoke thedraconian laws.

"Therefore it is important, in any situation particularlywhere the security of Jammu and Kashmir is concerned, to takethem (Army) along," he said answering a volley of questions ata press conference here.

Omar said he was not suggesting that the power of vetowas with anybody else. "The decision to revoke DAA ultimatelyis the state government''s," he said.

"But it is important that this should be done inconsultation and discussion with the Central government," hesaid, adding, "There is no fight or difference with the Centreon the issue."

"The state and the Central governments are on the samepage and both believe that this is an opportune time to startreviewing the process and gradually roll back," Omar said,maintaining that nobody is saying it will be done overnight.

On the opposition by Defence Minister A K Antony torevoke AFSPA from the state, Omar said, "It is important tounderstand that what is happening is as per the recommendationof the Cabinet Committee of Security, which made eightsuggestions, including review of the DAA."

"Antony is a member of CCS, that made the recommendationson the basis of which these committees have been setup toexamine the DAA," he said.

The Chief Minister said there was no difference with theCentre on the issue. "The Government of Jammu and Kashmir hasbeen very keen on starting the process of rolling back thoselaws that are not required at places where militancy is muchless than it used to be in the past," he said.

"Fortunately, the Centre is thinking on the same line. Wehave absolute support of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, UPAChairperson Sonia Gandhi, the Union Home Minister and theDefence Minister," Omar said.

On the two groups set up over DAA, he said greaterdiscussion was needed as it involved identifying the areas andworking out the modalities, besides the security structurethat has to be put in place after removal of DAA, the ChiefMinister said.

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