New Delhi: The Centre will work out modalities for legalising the Nepal route for return of Kashmiri youth from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh told Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba after she raised the issue with him, a state government statement said on Thursday.
Singh also assured Mehbooba that more cross-LoC points would be opened for movement of people and goods, the statement said.
The issue of migrant Kashmiri Pandits also came up during the meeting and the Chief Minister said the state government would make arrangements for accommodating them in transit accommodation till their permanent settlement at their native places, it said.
During the meeting where security and developmental issues concerning the state were discussed, Mehbooba stressed the urgency of rejuvenating the Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) in the state to put the peace and reconciliation process back on track.
She stressed the need for reviving the intra and inter-state CBMs including rehabilitation of the Kashmiri youth who had gone across for arms training and are now eager to return and live normal life, the statement said.
“Responding to the issues raised by Mehbooba, the Union Home Minister said the Government of India would work out the modalities for legalising the Nepal route for return of Kashmiri youth from PoK,” the statement said.
After the eruption of militancy in Kashmir in late 1980s, thousands of youth went to PoK for arms training. Many of them are said to be now fed up and want to return home to live a peaceful life.
Singh also assured the Chief Minister that more cross-LoC points would be opened for movement of people and goods after she made a request for such step in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.
She specifically stressed the need for opening Suchetgarh-Sialkote and Kargil-Skardu routes to increase people to people contact in the region, the statement said.
Mehbooba also called for raising additional IRPF (India Reserve Police Force) battalions in Jammu and Kashmir to create employment opportunities for the local youth.
Rehabilitation of those affected during the devastating floods of September 2014 and reconstruction of the damaged public infrastructure projects were also discussed by the Chief Minister with the Union Home Minister.
“Mehbooba said the people of Jammu and Kashmir have great expectations from the present coalition government in the state and it needs all possible assistance from the Centre for ushering J&K into an era of peace, progress and prosperity,” the statement added.