Srinagar: Appealing to maintain calm and not to believe rumors, Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik said advisory to pilgrims and tourists was issued as there were serious and credible inputs available to the security agencies regarding terrorist attacks on Amarnath yatra, a Raj Bhawan spokesman said.
In a statement on late Friday night, he said Mr. Malik met at short notice a delegation of political leaders including former Chief Minister and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti, Peoples Movement (PM) president Shah Faesal, Peoples Conference (PC) chairman Sajjad Lone and former minister Imran Ansari.
He said they had sought to meet the Governor who immediately gave them time.
The delegation expressed concerns about the panic situation in the Kashmir valley created by the developments during the day including the advisory issued by the government asking Amarnath Yatris and tourists to return as soon as possible.
Governor Malik informed the delegation that there were serious and credible inputs that were available to the security agencies regarding terrorist attacks on the Amarnath Yatra.
There was a Press Conference on Friday afternoon by the Corps Commander of the Army and the DGP in which details of the weapons and ammunition recovered was given. Mr. Malik said details of the seriousness of the threats that are there were also given. They also mentioned that the security forces were going to tackle these threats head-on and will not allow them to succeed. It is in this context that the government had issued an advisory asking Yatris and tourists to return as soon as possible.
These are a vulnerable group of people who do not know the area and are extremely vulnerable to a terrorist or a fidayeen attack. It is the responsibility of the state to provide security to all its citizens. Therefore, as a precautionary measure, Yatris and tourists have been asked to return. This is to ensure that no terrorist attack takes place on them.
Unnecessary panic is being created by linking this to all kinds of other issues. A pure security measure is being mixed up with issues with which it has no connection. That is the cause of the panic. This has been clarified in the evening by the Home Secretary and the Divisional Commissioner.
The Governor requested the political leaders to ask their supporters not to mix up matters, to maintain calm and not believe exaggerated rumors being circulated all around. The Governor himself had clarified matters on 35A on Thursday in Baramulla and the day before in Srinagar.
An advisory was issued by Principal Secretary Home Shaleen Kabra directing Amarnath yatries and tourists to curtail their stay in Kashmir and leave as soon as possible which evoked a sharp reaction from leaders of mainstream parties besides created panic. People rushed for panic buying of essentials, petrol, diesel and Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) went dry.