Majid Kapra

Talk with Pakistan if you want to end violence: Abdullah

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‘If situation continues like this, there will be no place here from where people will not be ready to die’

Srinagar, Apr 04: National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah Wednesday warned that there will be no place left in Kashmir where people will not be ready to die if the situation continues to be like it is today.

He also said it was imperative to find a solution to the Kashmir issue for which talks had to be initiated with Pakistan.

Speaking with reporters on the sidelines of a function at SKICC here, Abdullah said the clock was ticking away and unless a solution was soon found, the violence would increase across the Valley.

“Situation is grim, I must say that there would be no place left in Kashmir where people shy away from attaining martyrdom if the issue is not settled. It is imperative to find lasting solution to Kashmir issue if we have to come out of this disaster,” said Farooq Abdullah.

On being asked context for using the word “martyrdom”, Farooq in his typical style said: “what do you mean by martyrdom; are you going to get Pakistan or independence… what are you talking, about don’t mislead the people towards destruction.”

Hitting out at separatists for “provoking youth to lay down their lives”, he said “these are the people who provoke them to lose their lives. Had the way they advise them to adopt been right, Farooq would have suggested that much earlier!”

“If we have to escape from this storm, then it is imperative to find a solution to Kashmir soon and for that it is important to talk to Pakistan. Unless talks are held with Pakistan, there will be no solution here,” he said.

Abdullah said the dialogue process couldn’t wait till the last bullet was fired.

“Dialogue has to take place. How long are you going to wait? Till the last bullet will finish? Then you will (start) dialogue?,”  he asked.

Farooq Abdullah who also represents Srinagar Lok Sabha segment said “four full-scale battles were fought, did anything change on ground; so how many people do you want to kill.”

He warned India and Pakistan from indulging in war saying whatever they achieved in seventy years will be destroyed.

“Look at Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq; what they (India and Pakistan) have achieved in seventy years will be destroyed. But if they are still ready for war, let them. Farooq Abdullah does not stop them.”

Welcoming the Supreme Court ruling on Article 370, the NC president said the Centre must follow the Constitution both in letter and spirit.

“It (SC ruling) is a very good verdict. They have said it is permanent. But they (Centre) must undo what has been done to make Article 370 hollow. Half of our fight is for returning our 370 (special status), ” he said.

Abdullah said violence was again brewing in the Valley because of the “tragedies” that the nation was facing.

“The misunderstandings that are growing in the nation, young people of Kashmir are seeing their future as dark. To improve that future of those people, they (Centre) have to see to it that the constitution is followed in letter and spirit,” he said.

Abdullah said the Centre must restore the autonomy granted to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370.

“We have an autonomy which was granted to us. That autonomy must be restored to the people so that their honour is restored. Just playing tricks with it will not help. They have to get back to the normal, to the base root,”  he said.

The Srinagar MP said that violence was not the way to resolve issues and criticised people who propagate it.

Asked to comment on Pakistani cricketer Shahid Afridi’s tweet urging the United Nations to intervene in “Indian Occupied Kashmir” to stop the “bloodshed”, Abdullah said the killings must stop.

“Everybody has condemned it. Not one nation, every nation is condemning the killings. The killing must stop,” he said.

When asked that the BJP, which is in coalition with the PDP in Jammu and Kashmir, was not in favour of dialogue with Pakistan, the opposition leader said the ruling PDP had compromised for the sake of power.

“If they (PDP) had any intellect, they should have quit this government, but they love the government and the chair. Though they say it, but do nothing,” Abdullah said.

“For the last four years, they have been saying that talks will be started, but where is that process. The love for chair has wiped it all,”  he said.

He welcomed visitors to Kashmir, and assured them that the Kashmiri’s  fight for their rights was peaceful.

“So come, come to this valley and see the beauty that God has given to this valley.  The propaganda by the media against us should be stopped,” Abdullah said.

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