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Kashmir: Party group gets permission to meet leaders

Kashmir: Party group gets permission to meet leaders
Delegation from National Conference party to meet their President Farooq Abdullah in Srinagar, capital of Jammu and Kashmir

By Shuriah Niazi

NEW DELHI (AA) - Two months after political leaders were detained in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, the state administration has granted permission to a delegation from the National Conference party to meet their top two leaders on Sunday, according to a party official.

The meeting with party President Farooq Abdullah and Vice President Omar Abdullah will take place in Srinagar, the state’s capital. Both were detained after the government scrapped Jammu and Kashmir’s special status on Aug. 5.

"The delegation led by provincial head Devender Singh Rana and including former party legislators will fly from Jammu tomorrow morning," National Conference spokesperson Madan Mantoo told news agency Press Trust of India (PTI) on Saturday.

Mantoo said the government granted permission after Rana made a request to Satya Pal Malik, Jammu and Kashmir’s governor.

Hundreds of people including political leaders from Kashmir have been put under detention following the scrapping of the state’s special status.

In addition to Farooq and Abdullah, former Chief Minister and People's Democratic Party (PDP) chief Mehbooba Mufti is another prominent leader put in detention by the Jammu and Kashmir administration.

Jammu and Kashmir has been under a near-complete lockdown since the Indian government’s revocation of its special status.

Since then, the Indian government has blocked communication access and imposed restrictions on movement to thwart any protests in the region.

Rights groups, including Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, have repeatedly called on India to lift restrictions and release political detainees.

India said that 93% of the restrictions have been eased in the conflict-ridden region, a claim that Anadolu Agency could not independently verify.

- A disputed region

From 1954 until this Aug. 5, Jammu and Kashmir had special provisions under which it enacted its own laws. The provisions also barred outsiders from settling in or owning land in the territory.

India and Pakistan both hold the region of Kashmir in parts and claim it in full. China also controls part of the contested region, but it is India and Pakistan who have fought two wars over Kashmir.

Some Kashmiri groups in Jammu and Kashmir have been fighting against Indian rule for independence or for unification with neighboring Pakistan.

According to several human rights groups, thousands of people have been killed in the conflict in the region since 1989.

source: News Feed
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