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Jammu Kashmir

Posted at: Mar 9, 2018, 12:47 AM; last updated: Mar 9, 2018, 12:47 AM (IST)

CM rules out inquiry by central agency

Refuses to accept demand of BJP ministers

Dinesh Manhotra

Tribune News Service

Jammu, March 8

The much-hyped meeting of BJP ministers with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti to iron out their differences on contentious issues proved to be a damp squib as the latter refused to accept their demand of handing over the Hiranagar “murder and rape” case to the CBI. Mehbooba also rejected the demand of granting district status to Nowshera.

The only saving grace for the BJP ministers was the Chief Minister’s assurance that the “controversial” decisions taken in the review meeting of the Tribal Affairs Department would be kept in abeyance till the Cabinet Sub-Committee formulated a tribal policy. Facing the anger of people in Jammu against the alleged atrocities on locals in the name of investigation of the Hiranagar case and decision of the state government to “legalise land grabbing and bovine smuggling under police protection”, the BJP delegation today met the Chief Minister to sort out such “contentious” issues.

Sources said that before their meeting with the Chief Minister, all BJP ministers held their own meeting in the office of Industries and Commerce Minister Chander Parkash Ganga to chalk out a strategy.

Except for Forest Minister Choudhary Lal Singh and Chander Parkash Ganga, no other member in the delegation forcefully raised the demand for handing over the Hiranagar case to the CBI, a source said.

“As the Chief Minister explained that handing over the case to the CBI would hamper investigation at this point of point because the Crime Branch of the police had almost completed the probe, the BJP delegation mellowed down,” the source said, adding that the Chief Minister, however, promised a fair trial into the case. Incidentally, Lal Singh and Ganga had promised the agitating people of Kathua and Samba that they would impress upon the government to hand over the case to the CBI. On the “controversial” decisions taken during review meeting of the Tribal Affairs Department, sources said the Chief Minister assured that only the minutes of the meeting had come into the public domain and no rules had been farmed so far in the matter.

It was also decided in the meeting to appoint Additional Deputy Commissioners (ADCs) on a rotational basis at Kalakote and Kotrana. Such a system would also be adopted at Nowshera and Sunderbani.

Saffron party ministers leave press meet  

After the meeting with the Chief Minister, two BJP ministers Bali Bhagat and Ajay Nanda convened a press conference to highlight their achievements. But both the ministers were forced to leave the interaction midway after mediapersons asked them to highlight their achievements in the meeting. Without replying to queries, the ministers left the meeting in a huff.


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