Situation in Kashmir not bad as portrayed: Jaitley
New Delhi: Defence Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday said the BJP government had taken enough steps to ease tension with Pakistan but Islamabad responded with “cross-border terrorism to successfuly prevent the atmosphere needed for peace talks.”
The government took “significant steps to ease the situation”, which included inviting Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s oath ceremony and Modi’s December 2015 Lahore stopover for a social function at the Sharifs.
“Each one of these was responded by Pakistan with, let’s say, a Pathankot or an Uri or even the mutilation of two of our soldiers. Environment which must exist for talks was successfully prevented by Pakistan,” Jaitely told the media, referring to attacks in India.
The Minister said the Indian armed forces, which include the Army and the BSF, have been “dominating the LoC”– the de facto border with Pakistan — for the “past few weeks to curb the cross-border militant incursion.”
Jaitley refused to get into details about how the government planned to control escalating militancy in Kashmir.
“I don’t want to get into the strategic details but in the past few weeks our armed forces are dominating the LoC. Our security forces have been maintaining control over the situation.”
Asked about the situation in the Kashmir Valley, the Minister said it was not as bad as it was made out to be.
“Go and see for yourself. Some south Kashmir districts were a challenge. The other parts of the valley, including Srinagar, are normal.”