Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on Wednesday took a dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for not speaking in the Parliament about ongoing unrest in the Kashmir Valley.
He also urged the government to integrate hearts and minds of people of the "integral part of India" to solve problems there.
The Leader of Oppositioninitiated a debate in the Rajya Sabha over Kashmir that came after over a month of unrest which has left more than 55 people dead and thousands injured in the valley.
Azad criticised PM’s absence from the House during the debate, saying "the Prime Minister is so close, yet so far".
"The Prime Minister reaches the parliament (complex) everyday at 10 a.m. He stays in his (parliament) office till 6 p.m. His room is barely a minute and a half from the Rajya Sabha," Azad said.
He also hit out at Modi for speaking on Kashmir at a rally in Madhya Pradesh and not in the Parliament, a day after the Prime Minister appealed for peace in the restive valley.
Azad expressed concern over the violence in Kashmir but stressed the government should endeavour to win hearts and minds of the valley people and stop using force, including pellet guns, against protesters.
"We always say Kashmir is an integral part of India. But integral part should not be on paper only. There should be integration of minds and hearts," Azad said.
"Kashmir has had curfew for over 30 days. Many have been killed. Thousands are injured," Azad said.