Can talks on Kashmir cross Article 370 hurdle?

Although it has still not been formally acknowledged, the central government has extended an invitation to mainstream Jammu and Kashmir political parties, including the National Conference and Peoples Democratic Party, for a face-to-face meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi on June 24. The proposed meeting is significant politically as it will be the first conciliatory step taken by the government since the revocation of the state’s special constitutional status under Article 370 of the Constitution, and repeal of article 35A, that allowed ‘permanents residents’ certain special rights and privileges, on August 5, 2019.
The government’s eagerness to kick-start the political process, despite previously spelling out different timelines and prerequisites, suggests that there has been a quiet rethink on the Centre’s part. A final decision on whether the Centre’s invite will be accepted by the parties that are a part of the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) will be known after their meeting on June 22.

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