Hurriyat (m) leader Prof Bhat ready to talk to Delhi’s ‘special representative’ Dineshwar Sharma

Kashmir Wire

A top Hurriyat leader’s assertion that his door is open for whosoever wants to talk on Kashmir issue has generated a ray of hope for the centre’s special representative Dineshwar Sharma, who received a cold shoulder from the main stakeholder, Joint Resistance leadership, during his first two trips to Jammu and Kashmir.

“Yes, the doors of my office are open to everyone – Whosoever wants to talk ( on Kashmir issue.) If I have a valid reason, why should I shut the door of my office, but insisted for the involvement of Pakistan in the talks for a solution to the Kashmir issue”, Prof Abdul Gani Bhat told Kashmir Wire.

He said war is no solution. I am not a votary of war. Both India and Pakistan are nuclear states. “It is through dialogue that the problem could be solved but the involvement of Pakistan is imperative”, he said, adding involvement of Pakistan in the talks is as per the constitution of Hurriyat and Muslim Conference which he is heading.

“It is not only the future of Jammu and Kashmir at stake but the future of the entire south Asian region is at stake”, he said, adding to ensure the safety of the entire region, war is no option but talks inclusive of Pakistan is imperative for a lasting solution to the issue.

He expressed his readiness for talks with Sharma. The doors of my office are open to everyone. If people come to me for talks, I will talk and make my point – that without involving Pakistan no breakthrough on Kashmir is possible.

“If he (Sharma) chooses to meet me, it will be nice. I will welcome him to my office. He will be received well, I will meet and talk and put across the facts about the Kashmir issue. Unless talks happen, no positive results are expected”, Bhat said.

He said there was a need to contribute towards an environment for sanity. “You may not be able to achieve a breakthrough but the matter of fact is that talks have to happen and you have to talk sense”, Bhat said.

Bhat’s stand has relieved to some extent the Government of India’s anxiety as its representative received a cold shoulder, contrary to his predecessors who were received with open arms by one and all. Even the main opposition, National Conference, boycotted Sharma. Apart from the working President of the party Omar Abdullah, no one from the party which ruled the state for nearly 30 years, met Sharma.  Sharma left his Hari Niwas guest house and called on Omar who lives a few meters away from the guest house.

The main stakeholders, the Joint resistance leadership, comprising Hurriyat factions headed by Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and JKLF Chief Mohammad Yaseen Malik, has outrightly rejected the offer of talks with Sharma terming the initiative as a “futile exercise and waste of time”

The JRL had stated that without understanding and addressing Kashmir dispute in its historical context and international commitments made over it, lasting peace can neither be achieved in Jammu and Kashmir nor in the sub-continent.


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