Paying respect to the Ramzan month, the Union government of India decided not to hold any security operations in Jammu and Kashmir. The decision was welcomed by the state Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and opposition National Conference leader Omar Abdullah on Wednesday.

The Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti said: “The decision would go a long way in healing the wounds of people of the state who have been suffering the pain of violence and uncertainty for the past three decades or so. What best a time to go for this decision than the onset of holy month of Ramadhan which   promotes values of patience, self-restraint and tolerance.”

It was a “historic decision” and Mufti said that she wanted to thank the Centre government and especially the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Rajnath Singh. She also said that the people of Jammu and Kashmir were happy with this decision. Some of them had wanted this for long time. During this auspicious month for Muslims, the general environment will be breathable for them, she said.

“This marks the beginning of listening of the story of pain of the state’s people by the country’s leadership,” she said.

The gesture by the central government was aimed at providing some relief to the general population of the state who have been through enough “torment and tragedy”, Mufti said and appealed that equal and positive gesture should also be displayed by all of the stakeholders in Kashmir. She also thanked all those political parties who has supported her idea of ‘cessation of hostilities’ during a meeting convened by her recently.

Ramzan is the forerunner of peace, Mufti said and this decision will make the general environment of the state peaceful. This decision will also help in creating a long term benefit for the state that will be useful in the future, she added.

Abdullah said that the if the terrorists did not respond to the centre’s decision of halting security operation during the holy month of Ramzan, then it will be clear to the people of Jammu and Kashmir that they are not friends or well-wishers of the people.

The centre passed an order to the security forces posted in Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday, asking them to halt security operations during the Ramzan month in the state.

A home ministry spokesperson said in New Delhi that a peaceful Muslim can enjoy their festival Ramzan in a peaceful environment.

But in case there is a violation of the ceasefire from the other side of the LOC and if it is a question to save innocent lives, security forces would reverse the order, the spokesperson added.

The spokesperson said “It is important to isolate the forces that bring a bad name to Islam by resorting to mindless violence and terror”.

The holy month of begins from Friday or day after dependent on viewing of the moon.

(Adapted from TheTimesOfIndia.com)