Kashmir a dispute between India, Pak; should be resolved through dialogue: Farooq
Srinagar, Jul 11: Kashmir is a "dispute" between India and Pakistan which needed to be resolved through dialogue and not through military might, National Conference president Dr. Farooq Abdullah said Thursday.
Addressing workers at Hazratbal on the occasion of 19th death anniversary of his mother Begum Akbar Jehan, the Member Parliament from Srinagar said, "Kashmir is a dispute between two countries (India and Pakistan). Whatever they say, it is a dispute. The issue is still in the United Nations. The UN observers are still here and in Pakistan held Kashmir."
He said the issue would be addressed only after a thorough dialogue between the people on both sides of the Line of Control (LoC).
"It will be resolved only when the people of India and Pakistan talk (with each other) and then talk to others... This should be done so that no one should feel that the solution so achieved is a loss for either India or Pakistan or for the people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh."
Referring to India's insistence that “talks can begin only if terrorism ends”, Abdullah said, "Guns still roar in Afghanistan, but talks are still going on. Why cannot that policy be implemented here?
He said dialogue was the only option to address the Kashmir issue.
“Both India and Pakistan should open the channels of dialogue with the people of state living on either side of the Line of Control. The measure should be followed by a dialogue between India and Pakistan. Such an all encompassing dialogue will enable the both countries reach a solution which is acceptable to people living in the different regions of the erstwhile state,” he said.
“I believe we have had enough, if both India and Pakistan have to grow then it is indispensable for them to find solutions to the issues hampering their relation. I believe the time has come when both the countries should embark on path of dialogue. Any solution if it has to be a viable one should offer a win-win situation for the two countries as well as the people living across the erstwhile state,” he said.
"Nothing will be achieved by military might or force or coercion... they cannot put off the flame, which is burning here, by such things," he said.
Asked if talks should be held with all stakeholders, including Hurriyat Conference, in Kashmir, Abdullah said dialogue should be with everyone.
He also demanded revocation of an order to restrict the movement of civilian vehicles on a stretch of Srinagar-Jammu national highway because of the ongoing Amarnath Yatra.
"We have raised this issue in the Parliament. I saw the statement of divisional commissioner Kashmir that there is no ban. This is a lie. I have seen it myself that people are being stopped at various places. This order is wrong and should be revoked," he said.
Abdullah also said “the country we are living in today is poles apart from what it used to be, and what it was desired to be by the founding fathers of the Constitution of India.
“Today we have a political dispensation at the helm of affairs at the center that is inclined to rob the country of its secular character. The fascist and communal forces are hell-bent to change the secular visage of the country. Nonetheless India belongs to all its citizens, the country belongs to all. The countrymen have to keep it in their mind that the idea of progress is deficient if any community feels left out. India cannot grow if the growth of its minorities is stunted,” he said.
NC president also said the catch-words of ‘Sab Ka Saath Sab Ka Vikas’ didn’t see any implementation –“these words were just shredded over and over again rendering them useless.
“The other day the central budget had absolutely nothing for the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Today we see how our people are being intimidated on national highway. Every now and then we see the governor administration come up with reckless diktats of all sorts. I don’t see any of the actions of the central government reflect their sincerity for the materialization of the slogan,” he said.
According to a party press release, while asking the workers to rally round the party flag, he said, “We are faced with a difficult situation. Our state is facing a grim situation. Our identity and integrity is facing immense threats. The need of the hour is unity -- we have to shun our regional, religious prejudices for the greater good of the state. Article 370 and Article 35-A are the articles of faith for us. We will continue to work for the restoration of autonomy to the state.”