Indian opposition leaders will be visiting Jammu and Kashmir today (Saturday) to "review" the situation in the region.
The delegation also included prominent MPs of the CPI (M), RJD, NCP, Trinamool Congress and DMK.
Days ago, Congress leader and Rajya Sabha member Ghulam Nabi Azad had also tried to visit Kashmir but was stopped at the Jammu airport and sent back to Delhi. The government says the situation is normal.
Restrictions have been imposed since the Centre revoked Jammu and Kashmir's special status and divided the state into two union territories on August 5. However, this is in contrast to ground situation as three former Chief Ministers Dr Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti besides hundreds of other leaders and workers are under detention.
Senior leaders like Ghulam Nabi Azad Congress, Anand Sharma, Sitaram Yechury, Sharad Yadav, Manoj Jha, Majeed Memon, Tiruchi Shiva and D Raja were part of the delegation, which left from Delhi for Srinagar earlier in the day.
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Mr Gandhi claimed he was invited by Governor Satya Pal Malik to go to the state to witness that normalcy was restored after weeks of restrictions over the centre's resolution to finish particular standing to Jammu and Kashmir and the state's bifurcation. The governor had suggested that everything was normal and that he would send me a plane to visit the state. "Then, they do not allow leaders to visit the state.haven't seen such contradiction". The security was also heightened in the area.
Accusing the Congress of "patronising terrorism and separatism", Raina said, "For the last 70 years, it is Congress party and all these leftists who gave a sense of separatism and supported terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir".
Gandhi said that he would take Malik up on his offer, saying that while the opposition delegation wouldn't need an aircraft, they wanted to be ensured the "freedom to travel & meet the people, mainstream leaders and our soldiers stationed over there". Why aren't they allowing me to go to my home?
Azad told reporters at New Delhi on Saturday that the delegation is visiting Kashmir to see the ground situation in Kashmir.