Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Saturday criticised the Centre for the arrests of separatist leaders, reported The Indian Express. Mufti appealed to all political parties concerned to “sit together and find a remedy for Kashmir”. She was speaking at the People’s Democratic Party’s 18th Raising Day.

“You cannot kill an idea. You cannot jail an idea,” she said. “Today, we have the biggest challenge before us… today’s human being is not scared of the police, is not scared of the Army. It is a different challenge. The challenge is an idea, because of which stones are thrown and guns are used here, because of which there is turmoil in Kashmir.”

The state government will not allow any attempt to close trade across the Line of Control and the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad road link, Mufti said. “As Mufti Sahib [former Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed] would say, open roads… Kargil-Askardu, Jammu-Saikot and Leh- Xingjian, Kashmir should be set free.”

I could have been in power: Omar Abdullah

Meanwhile, former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah criticised the state government on Saturday, and claimed that his National Conference party could have been in power, reported India Today. “If I wanted, I could be in power in Jammu and Kashmir now. I could have planned against Mehbooba Mufti and offered an alliance to the BJP as an alternative.” Abdullah also claimed that the Central government would be interested in an alliance between the Bharatiya Janata Party and the National Conference.