India and Pakistan must talk and solve the Kashmir issue to end terrorism in the region, former Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah said on Friday, after a meeting of opposition parties that rooted for talks with all, including separatists, to end the ongoing bloody unrest that has crippled normal life for over three months in the valley.
Farooq Abdulla, former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and president of National Conference (NC), today called an All Party Meet at his residence to discuss the prevailing situation in Kashmir.
For over three months now, normal life has been crippled in Kashmir because of unrest. However, political leaders of the country have not yet been able to agree on a common agenda to deal with the situation.
While all leaders in opposition to the Centre and the Jammu & Kashmir government claim they want peace, they have failed to point out one permanent solution to the Kashmir problem, or probably shied away from voicing their true opinions.
The unrest in the valley is being led by people who want freedom or ‘azaadi’ from India and in their pursuit, they are also reportedly aided by Pakistan.
The Centre has made its stand clear that it won’t bow down to the demands of separatists, but continue to carry out development works in the state.
The leaders in the opposition parties have, however, failed to take a stand, even as they claim they want peace. Abdullah’s All Party Meet today was no different. Talking to reporters, Abdullah said he is in favour of resuming talks with Pakistan for he believes that it is the only way to peace in Kashmir.
Incidentally, Pakistan has hardened its stance on Kashmir and openly declared it won’t compromise from its stand on Kashmir — that is its separation from India.
Politicians in opposition parties like Abdullah continue to urge the Indian government to resume talks with Pakistan. “We are only interested in peace, India and Pakistan must sit down and resolve their issues,” he said.
Evoking Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Abdullah said, “Remember what Vajpayee ji said ‘we can’t choose our neighbours’, so we have to talk to Pakistan, there is no other option.”
However, in all these talks, one can’t find a solution which can come only when Pakistan stops sponsoring terrorism and forgo its claim on Kashmir.
Abdullah, interestingly said, “Only talks can bring a solution. If both countries will sit together as friends there can be a solution.”
How do you sit as friends when the neighbour is openly hostile and unrelenting? Abdullah had no answer to this.