Srinagar: Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today said the Army cannot be withdrawn from the state overnight, keeping in mind the current situation but its role can be reduced.
"Today, three jawans of army are dead. If in these circumstances you will say that there is no role of the Army, then this will be huge injustice. The role of Army can be decreased, but it cannot be withdrawn overnight," Omar told reporters here.
Omar was referring to Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed's assertion that the logistic requirement of the Army to deal with internal strife had considerably reduced in view of the perceptible change for the good in the overall situation on the ground.
Three jawans were today killed in a fierce gun battle with militants in a forest area in Kupwara in Kashmir Valley, while a militant was shot dead in a separate encounter in the district.
The National Conference's working President also said that Sayeed had not raised the issue during the time when he (Omar) was in power.
"I was the chief minister of the state for six years, why did not Mufti sahib raise this issue in those years. When I spoke about revocation of AFSPA, remember (PDP president) Mehbooba Mufti's statement that you cannot defame the Army," he added.