This Article is From Aug 07, 2016

New Kashmir Outreach? Ram Madhav, Ministers Brainstorm With Civil Society

Senior BJP leader Ram Madhav is leading a conclave at Jammu's Patnitop.

Highlights

  • A special conclave is being led by Ram Madhav in Jammus Patnitop
  • It is being attended by ministers, civil society and RSS members
  • More than 50 people died, over 3000 were injured in month-long clashes
New Delhi: Is the Narendra Modi government exploring the contours of a new Kashmir outreach as the unrest in valley shows no sign of abating even a month after the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist Burhan Wani? A special "Young Thinkers' Meet" organised by the BJP's national general secretary Ram Madhav in Jammu's Patnitop has led to speculation of an unofficial track-two initiative.

The special conclave, led by Mr Madhav, will bring together the members of the civil society, and some ministers. Sources say this is one way of bringing together like-minded people to discuss the best way forward with the stalled dialogue process and reaching out to the separatists.

The conclave -- under the banner of non-profit India Foundation -- is being held in presence of the members of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, the ideological mentor of the BJP.

It is being attended by around 80 intellectuals and members of the civil society and some senior ministers. Besides, Shaurya Doval, the son of National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, is also present at the conclave.

While the meet is not an official initiative of the government, the presence of Ram Madhav - who is associated with the non-profit -- is crucial.

The senior BJP leader, along with the late Mufti Mohammad Sayeed of the PDP, was the author of the agenda of alliance agreement between the state's ruling alliance. The agreement commits to talks with Pakistan and sustained dialogue with all stakeholders, including the Hurriyat Conference.

Over a month of continuous protests and clashes, more than 50 people in the Valley have died and over 3,000 have been injured.

Normal life remains hampered as curfew remains in place and mobile internet is shut. The separatists have enforced their own bandh, and there have been reports of terrorist leaders attending several rallies in the state.