Omar lashes out at Centre over AFSPA, Liyaqat Ali Shah's arrest

Jammu, Mar 26 : Commenting on the simmering issue of removing the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) in the valley, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has said that the Central Government should show a gut to experiment with its removal.

"If the central government could hang Afzal Guru knowing well that it would have repercussions in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, then why cannot it gather the courage to remove AFSPA? I do not understand this," Abdullah told media here.

He further questioned the Delhi police's role in arrest of alleged Hizbul Mujahideen militant Liyaqat Ali Shah.

"The Delhi police say that he (Shah) had come to New Delhi to plot a militant attack on a shopping mall. The Jammu and Kashmir police refuse to accept this viewpoint. This man was coming back as per a rehabilitation policy and had appropriate permissions about which we knew. If a man would come to a place to plot a militant attack, would he do so accompanied by family? I fail to understand this," he said.

"Shah was not going to carry out terror attacks in New Delhi, as he was not holding a gun in his hand...instead; he was holding the hands of his wife and his daughter," he added.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Home Affairs on Monday ordered National Investigation Agency (NIA) probe into the arrest of Liyaqat Ali Shah.

The Jammu and Kashmir Police had supported the claims of Shah's family that he was a former militant who had already surrendered and was part of a group returning from Pakistan- occupied Kashmir as part of the rehabilitation policy.

The Special Cell of Delhi Police on the contrary has claimed that it had foiled a suicide attack in the national capital with Shah's arrest, who they claimed, was a Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist who planned attacks in the national capital.

Shah's arrest triggered a controversy after the Omar Abdullah Government and the state police contradicted Delhi Police's version that he was coming to Delhi to coordinate terror strikes during the festival of Holi.

--ANI (Posted on 26-03-2013)

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