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Talks a priority in Valley, but only within framework of Indian Constitution

By Vicky Nanjappa
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    New Delhi, Aug 25: In a bid to shift gear in Jammu and Kashmir, the new Governor, Satyapal Malik would begin engagements with all stake-holders provided they are willing to speak under the framework of the Indian Constitution.

    Satyapal Malik

    Malik's brief is clear and that would be to restore peace in the Valley, sources tell OneIndia. He does face several challenges, but the immediate priority would be to restore peace and also ensure that the conduct of the local body polls are a smooth affair.

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    Malik would coordinate closely with the Centre's interlocutor, Dineshwar Sharma who has already reached out to several stake-holders in the Valley. Sources also say that the smooth conduct of the local body polls is a top priority. In addition to this the fight against terrorists would continue and there is a clear brief to wipe out the problem.

    Malik has his task cut out and he would have a host of issues to tackle which includes Article 35 A, security and also the possible formation of a government. Malik is a veteran in politics and has been a prominent political personality in Uttar Pradesh. He has also served as the Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs and Tourism.

    The two immediate challenges before him are Article 35 A and the Panchayat elections.

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    The fact that Prime Minister Narendra Modi said during his Independence Day address that the state would conduct the local body polls only shows how serious the government is about it. The peaceful and fair conduct of the polls would be a big responsibility for the new Governor. It would also be interesting to see how Malik would handle the issue regarding Article 35 A.

    Vohra was not on the same page with the Centre regarding this. He had felt that it would not be right to toy with the issue in the absence of an elected government. Sources in New Delhi tell OneIndia say that the immediate challenge would be the conduct of the local body polls. Any talk about forming a government would take place only after that.

    There is a dire need to restore peace and bring about normalcy and hence the administration would only take one thing at a time.

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