J&K: No extension of ceasefire, operations against terror to resume
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Sunday said has decided not to extend Ramzan ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir. However, security forces will resume to crackdown on Militants.
Taking to Twitter, home minister Rajnath Singh credited the armed forces for their restraint and asked them to resume operations against terrorists like before. The home minister added that the government was committed to working to create an environment free of terror and violence in the Valley.
Speaking to media, Singh said,''On 17th May, GoI took decision that Security Forces will not conduct offensive operations in J&K during holy month of Ramzan. Decision was taken in interests of the peace loving people of J&K, in order to provide them a conducive atmosphere to observe Ramzan.''
''Security Forces are being directed to take all necessary actions as earlier to prevent terrorists from launching attacks and indulging in violence and killings.Government will continue with its endeavour to create an environment free of terror and violence in J&K,'' HM Rajnath Singh said.
The decision to not extend the ceasefire has also been influenced by the fact that Amarnath yatra is commencing on June 28. The decision makers are not willing to take any chance of attacks on pilgrims or security forces.
The government had on May 17 announced security forces will halt counter-insurgency operations during the Islamic holy month of Ramzan in the first ceasefire in the troubled state in more than 17 years, accepting a demand made by chief minister Mehbooba Mufti.
Earlier reports suggested that while security agencies are against the extension, those who are talking peace want the same extended. The truce, as a result of which search and combat operations were halted comes to an end on Eid. The Centre's interlocutor in Kashmir has been trying to broker peace in the Valley. He wants the truce to be extended. Irrespective of what the government's decision would be, he would still meet with the Hurriyat leaders after Eid.
The government has been trying to get the Hurriyat leadership to talk. Rajnath Singh too made comments to this effect. Some have advised the Home Minister that if the truce is not extended then the Hurriyat could use that as an excuse and avoid coming to the talks table.
The government's decision comes just days after veteran journalist Shujaat Bukhari was brutally shot dead by bike-borne men near his office in Srinagar. The bullet-riddled body of army officer Aurangzeb, who was abducted by militants, was found on the same day.