Kashmir dialogue: Dineshwar Sharma appointed interlocutor by Centre, says priority is restoring peace

Within hours of being appointed as the interlocutor for Kashmir, former IB chief Dineshwar Sharma said that ‘priority is restoring peace.’

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Priority is restoring peace in Jammu and Kashmir, says Dineshwar Sharma. (ANI)

Within hours of being appointed as the interlocutor for Kashmir, former IB chief Dineshwar Sharma said that ‘priority is restoring peace.’ He was speaking after Home Minister announced Centre’s step to start a sustainable dialogue in Jammu and Kashmir involving stakeholders that would target bringing peace in the region. Answering queries by correspondents, Sharma said, “Hope I will be able live up to the trust government of India has showed and will be able to fulfill expectations of people.” As far as getting results from his efforts was concerned, he underlined what would be on top of his agenda. He said, “Priority is restoring peace (in J&K) and finding a permanent solution.” On when exactly he would get down to the business end of things in the state, Sharma said that, “Will go to Kashmir in 8-10 days, first would assess here, how things can be taken forward.” On Rajnath Singh revealing that his rank will be equivalent to that of a Cabinet Secretary, Sharma reacted by saying, “Rank does not matter. GoI gave me a very big responsibility, nothing can be better than improvement of the situation in J&K.”

Reacting to the Centre’s move to appoint an interlocutor, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti took to Twitter and posted this message”Welcome initiative of Union Govt, appointing interlocutor for leading a sustained dialogue with stakeholders in J&K.” In an interaction thereafter, Mufti said, “He is a very good person and has huge credibility, has been involved in dialogues in North East also. It is a good start and the need of the time, I welcome this step.” SHe added, “People are caught between so many guns right now and they want to come out of. It is a good initiative and should be a success.

Former IB Director Dineshwar Sharma later in evening met Home Minister Rajnath Singh after being appointed as Centre’s representative in J&K.

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