February 2007 News

India revives Kashmir Committee

21 February 2007
The Daily Times
Iftikhar Gilani

New Delhi: India has revived the unofficial Kashmir Committee led by noted lawyer MP Ram Jethmalani and included two retired bureaucrats who had previously been helping the government liase with separatist groups. The more significant inclusion is that of AS Dulat, who was assisting former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee as an officer- on-special duty (OSD) on Kashmir affairs after retiring as head of the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW). He was roped in only recently by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in discussions with Kashmiri separatist groups to use his contacts with Kashmiri leaders. The other new entrant is Vinod Grover, a former secretary who was handling Kashmir, the UN and Indo-Pakistan relations in the Ministry of External Affairs. He is also said to be an experienced Kashmir hand. Jethmalani relaunched the committee here last week and, acting on the advice of Dulat, decided to set a meeting with hardliner leader Syed Ali Geelani in Jammu and Kashmir in early March.


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