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Central team takes stock of situation in JK

By Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar
August 06, 2008 00:13 IST
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A high-level meeting in Jammu on Tuesday took stock of the volatile situation in the state and reviewed arrangements for security of the strategic Jammu-Srinagar national highway, the Valley's lifeline for supplies.
A central team comprising Union Home Secretary Madhukar Gupta and Defence Secretary Vijay Singh had a detailed meeting with senior state government officers, led by Chief Secretary S S Kapur, and reviewed the overall situation in Jammu and Kashmir today.
While briefing reporters about the meeting Kapur said that the overall security and law and order situation was reviewed. But he added that the focus of today's meeting was on securing the Srinagar-Jammu national highway to facilitate the free and smooth flow of trucks carrying fuel, essentials and fresh fruits, which are stranded on either side of the Jawahar Tunnel.
He said that the meeting took stock of the situation in Jammu and the officials discussed  measures to restore normalcy. Kapur said that hundred percent securing of the national highway was the single-minded focus of the administration.
He said that J&K Governor N N Vohra had issued clear instructions for ensuring free movement of trucks on the Highway.
The chief secretary said measures have already been put in place to ensure hassle free plying of trucks from Lakhanpur to Srinagarand back. He added that 400 Srinagar bound load carriers have been cleared at Lakhanpur on Monday, besides 150 trucks arriving from Srinagar.
He underscored the need for a dialogue to defuse the situation in Jammu and said that Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh had convened an all-party meeting on Wednesday to discuss means to address the situation.

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Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar