We’ve met almost everyone in valley, say interlocutors (Second Lead)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

JAMMU - Two interlocutors on Kashmir who arrived in Jammu Wednesday said their visit to the Valley was successful as they “met almost everyone” - despite being boycotted by separatists.

“We met almost everyone except the separatists,” journalist Dileep Padgaonkar, one of the interlocutors, told reporters here. He was responding to a question on whether he could describe the visit as successful as separatists did not interact with them.

Padgaonkar and academician Radha Kumar arrived here at the conclusion of their four-day visit to the Valley. Hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani had given a call to boycott the three central government interlocutors, the third being M.M. Ansari.

Padgaonkar said he was aware that “what’s palatable in the Valley is not palatable in Jammu”.

He disclosed that he and Kumar would be meeting separatist leaders in Kot Bhalwal jail in Jammu. Officials earlier said they would be interacting with separatists like Shabbir Shah and Asiya Andrabi there.

Padgaonkar, Kumar and Ansari met mostly mainstream party faces in the Valley like National Conference leader and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and Peoples Democratic Party leader M.H. Baig.

A few students of the Kashmir University lso met them, while separatists boycotted the central team.

Ansari has flown back to New Delhi from Kashmir.

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