Rajnath Sings Says, Security Forces Have Been Asked Not To Go Offensive During Ramazan


New Delhi:  Union home minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday said that security forces have been asked not to launch operations in Jammu and Kashmir during the holy month of Ramzanafter state Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti sought a ceasefire request a week ago.

“Decision [has been] taken to help the peace loving Muslims [sic] observe Ramzan in a peaceful environment,” Singh wrote on Twitter, saying he has informed Mufti about the decision.

Security forces will retaliate if attacked or “if it was essential to protect the lives of innocent people”, he said.

“[The] government expects everyone to cooperate in this initiative and help the [sic] Muslim brothers & sisters to observe Ramzan peacefully and without any difficulties,” Singh said. “It is important to isolate the forces that bring a bad name to Islam by resorting to mindless violence and terror.” Ramzan begins on Thursday.

Mufti tweeted to say she welcomed the “Ramzan ceasefire”.

On May 9, Mufti had said the Centre should consider a unilateral ceasefire in the state starting from Ramzan in mid May till the completion of the AmarnathYatra in August.

She made the remarks after chairing an all-party meeting, which was convened to discuss the situation in the Valley, especially after a tourist from Chennai was killed in stone pelting on May 7.

“Everyone (all parties) agreed that we should appeal to the Centre to consider a ceasefire like the unilateral ceasefire in (former PM AtalBihari) Vajpayee’s time during Ramzan (later this month) till AmarnathYatra and Eid,” she had said.

The Jammu and Kashmir unit of the BJP, which is sharing power with Mufti’s PDP, opposed her call for a unilateral ceasefire claiming such a step was not at all in “national interest”.

“An opinion came up during the discussion for a unilateral ceasefire on the lines of one declared by the AtalBihari Vajpayee government. We have a strong view... Unilateral ceasefire in the present situation is not in national interest at all,” BJP state unit’s chief spokesperson Sunil Sethi had said.

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