Kashmir Liberation Front chief Yasin Malik
was arrested while other senior separatist leaders were placed under house arrest ahead of their proposed protest at the NIA headquarters in Delhi, even as Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh arrived in Srinagar
on Saturday to hold talks on the Kashmir issue.
Rajnath, who is here on a four-day visit, has said he was going to Jammu
and Kashmir with an open mind and was willing to meet with anyone who could help in finding solutions to the Kashmir issue.
The Union Home Minister began his visit by meeting state Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti in the Nehru Guest House in Srinagar.
He is expected to travel to Srinagar, Anantnag, Jammu
and Rajouri and meet civil society members, leaders of political and social outfits, business leaders and others during the visit.
Meanwhile, senior separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani and Mirwaiz Umer Farooq have been placed under house arrest in Srinagar, while Yasin Malik
was arrested by police from his uptown Maisuma residence around midnight.
Authorities have imposed restrictions in six police station areas of Rainawari, Khanyar, Nowhatta, M R Gunj, Safa Kadal and Maisuma.
Police claimed that the senior separatist leaders had not been detained because they intended to go to Delhi, but because they were trying to create a law and order problem.
Munir Ahmad Khan, Inspector General of police (IGP) Kashmir, told reporters that the three senior separatist leaders were trying to mobilize people for a separatist rally that would have created a law and order problem for the authorities.
"Had they moved to Delhi as normal passengers we would have allowed them to go wherever they wanted to go. But, we cannot allow anybody to create a law and order problem," the IGP said.
State Director General of Police (DGP) S P Vaid had said on Friday that the three separatist leaders would be allowed to go anywhere they wanted to go.
The separatist trio had announced on Wednesday their plans to visit Delhi today for holding a sit-in outside the NIA headquarters and court arrest against what they termed as the vilification of Kashmiri people by the investigating agency.
'Willing to meet anyone to help find solution to problems in Kashmir'
Rajnath Singh said he has come with an open mind and willing to meet anyone who helps the government find solutions to the problems faced by the state.
The official Twitter handle of the home minister said Singh will chair a review meeting of Prime Minister's Development Package and also meet the Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti.
Singh said in a tweet before taking off from the capital:
Singh said he will be interacting with delegations of civil society in the state during his stay.
The home minister arrived at the Srinagar
airport where he was received by deputy chief minister Nirmal Singh and senior officials of the state government, officials said.
During his stay in the state, the home minister is likely to meet Governor N N Vohra, besides meeting top civil administration and security officials, the officials said.
The officials said the home minister is scheduled to visit Khanabal in south Kashmir's Anantnag
district where he will interact with CRPF
and police officials.
has been on the boil over the past one and a half year and has witnessed several encounters between security forces and militants.
Singh will also visit Naushera in Rajouri district and Jammu
district during the four-day visit, they added.
Omar Abdulla reminds Rajnath of Modi’s Independence Day speech
Ahead of Home Minister Rajnath Singh's rally in Jammu
and Kashmir, Jammu
and Kashmir National
Conference (JKNF) leader Omar Abdullah reminded the former of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Independence Day speech and said that the state expects it to be "acted on."
Taking on Twitter Abdullah, stated:
and Kashmir Chief Minister, last month, met Rajnath, reportedly, to drum up support for preventing attempts to remove special status to the state under the Constitution.
Mehbooba is caught in a catch-22 situation over the ongoing matter in the Supreme Court
on revoking Article 35-A of the Constitution.
Rajnath Singh had earlier said that a solution to the Kashmir problem, besides terrorism, Naxalism, and the northeast insurgency, will be found before 2022.
Rajnath Singh's visit comes after Prime Minister Narendra Modi
from the ramparts of Red Fort said his government was committed to bring back the "lost glory" of Kashmir.