KL NEWS NETWORK
National Conference President Dr Farooq Abdullah Saturday said there was no alternative to a comprehensive dialogue process between India and Pakistan and that both nuclear-powers should realize the importance of amicably resolving the Kashmir Issue without any further delay.
Dr Farooq Abdullah said political uncertainty viz-a-viz the Kashmir Issue was not only detrimental to peace but also deprived the people of Jammu and Kashmir of a politically and economically secure future.
Dr Farooq was addressing party workers and activists at the mausoleum of Sher-e-Kashmir Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah at Naseem Bagh in Srinagar on his 110th Birth Anniversary.
Earlier, National Conference Working President Omar Abdullah prayed for peace and stability in the State and said upholding the values of secularism and pluralism would be the best tribute to Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah.
The National Conference Working President, while speaking to journalists at the venue said, “Sher-e-Kashmir Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah’s legacy of selfless leadership and his commitment to the timeless ideals of pluralism and secularism needed to be emulated today to defeat divisive forces who want to divide the people of the State for political dividends. His vision of a united and prosperous Jammu and Kashmir remains the guiding light of our party and we will continue to strive to uphold his legacy.” “Sheikh Sahib’s agrarian reforms laid the base for economic empowerment in the State and today it is because of this that J&K has the lowest level of poverty in the entire country. Similarly, his political struggle to uphold the political rights of this State and its people played a vital part in safeguarding our distinct identity and constitutional status. Today when the State is being governed by those who are invested in the motive of dividing people and weakening the State’s special status, we should all recollect Sher-e-Kashmir’s leadership and draw lessons from it.”
Addressing party workers and activists, Dr Farooq Abdullah said, “there were various proposed models of resolving the Kashmir Issue and his suggestion of converting the Line of Control into the International Border was one such viable option based on realism – an option he has articulated time and again.”
“People on both sides of the LoC cannot continue to suffer till eternity for want of a lasting political solution to the Kashmir Issue. Both India and Pakistan are nuclear powers and war is not the answer. Those who think that borders can be redrawn need to realize the realities and dimensions of this conflict. While this is one such solution, we are open to any other viable solution that is mutually acceptable to India and Pakistan and primarily to the people of Jammu and Kashmir. It’s time to end this perpetual suffering which manifests itself variably in different forms of violence and hostility. The costs of this conflict cannot be borne by the people of Jammu and Kashmir till eternity. Both India and Pakistan are duty-bound to address this issue and seek its resolution,” Dr Farooq said.
“I have always opposed violence as a means to an end and firmly believe political engagement alone can resolve our miseries. The turmoil that engulfed the State for nearly two decades brought nothing but death and destruction with it as we lost thousands of our children to violence and militancy. The complete lack of a political direction and narrative viz-a-viz the Kashmir Issue is dangerous. Today, there is absolutely no talk of the Kashmir Issue and its resolution within the State and in Delhi as both PDP and BJP have perhaps entered into an agreement to side line this core political issue. Turning a blind eye towards this problem will not resolve it. National Conference has always encouraged both New Delhi and Islamabad to address the Kashmir Issue and we will continue to assert this crucial political demand,” Dr Farooq added.
Farooq expressed disappointment at the state of misgovernance in the State and said the Government’s abandonment of the flood victims was cruel and tragic. “A paltry few thousand Crores is the component for flood relief and rehabilitation in the Union government Package that was recently announced – and even this allocation is vague. While the previous Government had sought a comprehensive Flood Relief and Rehabilitation Package of Rs 44,000 Crore for the flood victims, the PDP-BJP Government has left thousands of flood victims in the lurch amid rising inflation and ahead of a harsh winter. Those left homeless and those victims who lost their source of livelihood in the devastating floods have nowhere to go. Even after a year has passed they are running from pillar to post to get their due in terms of adequate compensation. Such insensitivity towards the flood victims can fester into alienation and isolation,” the National Conference President said.