Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Wednesday expressed happiness over what he called the central government's acknowledgement that the ‘controversial’ Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) has to be lifted from Jammu and Kashmir.

Talking to media persons on the sidelines of a function in Srinagar, the Chief Minister said the state government was in touch with the centre regarding the revocation of AFSPA.

Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said recently that all the stakeholders in Kashmir and Northeast would be taken on board before taking a final decision on the revocation of the much debated Act.

The AFSPA gives sweeping powers to the Army and Paramilitary forces in disturbed or troubled states for arrests, search and seize operations.

Omar Abdullah also confirmed that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's scheduled visit to the state on June 25 has not been cancelled as  reported by a section of media, quoting Saif-ud-Din Soz, chief of the state Congress.

"The Prime Minister's visit stands as on date and we are working out the modalities with the Prime Minister's Office," Omar Abdullah said.

The chief minister said UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi is also likely to visit the state with the Prime Minister.


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