Kashmir chief secretary told to file affidavit on Kishtwar

New Delhi, Aug 13 (IANS) The Supreme Court Tuesday directed the Jammu and Kashmir’s chief secretary to file an affidavit stating steps taken by it on all aspects related to the communal violence in Kishtwar.

Chief Justice P. Sathasivam, Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai and Justice Ranjan Gogoi said the affidavit should cover all aspects of the situation.
The state government’s counsel told the court that the government had already announced a commission of inquiry into the Kishtwar clashes which began on Eid-ul-Fitr day Friday and quickly spread to other regions.
The commission of inquiry will be headed by a retired judge of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court.
The apex court direction came on an application by Sudesh Singh, political secretary of the Jammu and Kashmir National Panthers Party.
The government counsel said the state government announced a compensation of Rs.5 lakh each to those killed in the Kishtwar violence.
“We hope and trust the elected government is aware of the situation and will take necessary steps” to maintain communal harmony and law and order, Chief Justice Sathasivam said.
Senior counsel Bhim Singh of the Panthers Party sought certain directions to the state government.
“This is a very serious matter. The state government is taking urgent action. At this stage we can’t say the state government is keeping mum,” Sathasivam said.
“We can’t control the administration. They must be allowed to have a free hand,” the judge added.
The application said hundreds of Hindu pilgrims have been stranded due to curfew in Kishtwar district.