Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh also said talks and NIA investigations shouldn't be linked (File)
Talks can be held even with those separatists who have been arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), Jammu and Kashmir's Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh said here today.
"Actually, we must not link the two things (talks and NIA investigations) because NIA is an autonomous body. It has its mandate and NIA has found certain acts which are not as per the law. So, NIA is taking action," he told reporters.
"As far as dialogue is concerned, if it is felt that those people, even if they are behind the bars, they can be consulted, no problem in that, because it is happening. It happens everywhere," Mr Singh told reporters here.
He was responding when asked whether newly-appointed interlocutor Dineshwar Sharma would hold talks with the separatists who have been arrested by the NIA or are under the investigating agency's scanner.
Mr Singh said talks could be held with the separatists and they should come forward with their grievances with an open mind.
"If there are grievances, then they should be placed on table with open mind and there are no preconditions. Talks should be held and what would happen would be decided later," he added.
"As our Home Minister (Rajnath Singh) has said that all stakeholders can come. In our (PDP-BJP) Agenda of Alliance, on whose basis our government was formed, we have made it clear that the Jammu and Kashmir government will try to create an environment in which talks can happen because talks are the only solution," he said.
The Deputy Chief Minister termed the announcement of talks as a right step in right direction.