People's Democratic Party (PDP) MP Nazir Ahmad Laway on Thursday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging him 'to send a group of Union Ministers to Kashmir to assess the situation and immediately release local political leaders detained after the revocation of Article 370.'
In the letter to the Prime Minister, Laway has said that the house arrest of three former Chief Ministers including PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti, the National Conference president Farooq Abdullah and his son Omar Abdullah and Parliamentarians is "not healthy for democracy."
Maintaining that democracy is built on the bedrock of the coexistence of diverse and often diverging views and ideologies, the PDP MP has argued in the letter that "detaining mainstream political leaders, who stood through thick and thin with the Government of India, is completely unjustifiable."
"Some of the detained persons have even been deported to outside state jails. All these things will definitely not help in building the confidence of the people," said he.
Talking about the ban on internet service in the region, he said: "The communication blackout is completely unreasonable and unjustifiable. Having access to the internet is not a luxury but a basic need. It has a devastating impact on the lives of Kashmiris."
The PDP leader has underlined that the horticulture sector, which is considered as the backbone of Kashmir economy, is badly hit and the fruit growers are severely affected as they face a lot of difficulties in procuring the essential items for packaging and transportation of their fruits.
Referring to the first speech of Prime Minister Modi after the abrogation of Article 37o and 35A wherein he spoke about the Central government's plans to end corruption, atrocities and violence in Jammu and Kashmir, Laway said: "More than two months have passed, nothing seems to be working on the ground."
Stressing Union Home Amit Shah had said in the Lok Sabha that the Kashmir issue is a result of Himalayan blunders committed by the past governments, he said that if the past governments would have fulfilled their promises to the people of Jammu and Kashmir, then the situation would not have been this worse today.
"It is the result of the past betrayal that bleeds us to this day," he said.
The leader said that Kashmir requires a political settlement as the youths here feel dejected and hopeless and they are usually upset and sad. He said that the Prime Minister himself had reiterated from the Red Fort that Kashmir can only become peaceful when the government will listen to Kashmiris and embrace the people of Kashmir.
"I, therefore, request you to send a Group of Ministers to access the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, inpect the conditions of all Kashmiris, speak to common people, hear their voices, concerns and testimonies and accordingly act on the factual report," said Laway.
The PDP MP also stressed the need for framing a practical policy by the Centre to win the hearts and minds of the people of Jammu and Kashmir and urged for talks with all stakeholders at the earliest.
( With inputs from ANI )