Stating that the talks with separatists are imperative to resolve the Kashmir issue, the opposition, on Saturday, said that Centre must not play politics and should initiate dialogue with the Hurriyat leaders, who are one among the main stakeholders in Kashmir issue.
However, the political parties also said that state Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti, who had announced to step down in case the dialogue would not be initiated, must keep her word.
Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC) chief, GA Mir said that the Centre has given their decision over the dialogue and it is upto the state Chief Minister now to decide what to do next.
“She had recently announced to resign in case the dialogue will not be held, but after Centre recorded its statement in Supreme Court, Mehbooba is still continuing as the chief minister,” he said.
The JKPCC chief said that the students protesting had lots of hope from the Mehbooba-led government, but she has failed them. “The ball is in the court of Mehbooba government and now it is for her to decide here future course of action. People are keenly watching the developments,” he added.
Meanwhile, general secretary of National Conference (NC), Ali Muhammad Sagar, questioned what was wrong in initiating dialogue with the separatist leaders. “The Centre must not play politics and should hold dialogue with the separatist leaders as they too have an opinion,” he said.
Sagar said that the previous central governments, including the earlier BJP government has held dialogue with them. “Closing channels to resolve the issue by not talking with the separatists is a wrong move. Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti, had recently said that the Prime Minister had assured of holding talks but the recent statement of Centre is absolutely contrary,” he said.
He said that the people are getting alienated with the government and there is a need to look into the matter. “The Kashmir issue has been raised at different forums and the government must find a way out to resolve this issue as it is the question of aspirations of the people of Kashmir.”
Senior CPI (M) leader and MLA Kulgam, Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami, said that holding talks with voices of dissent is the essence of democracy. “The best option is the process of dialogue as violence only leads to death and destruction,” he said.
Expressing dismay and surprise over the stand taken by Attorney General of India in the apex court, the CPI (M) leader said, “New Delhi’s stand that it will talk only when there is peace is similar to a doctor asking a patient to get well first and then he will treat him.”
“The necessity of the dialogue arises when issues, despite adopting other means, remain unresolved,” Tarigami added.
Peoples Democratic Front (PDF) president and MLA Khansahib, Hakim Muhammad Yasin, said that Centre has always remained non-serious towards Kashmir.
“If Mehbooba had announced to resign in case the dialogue will not be initiated, then why is she delaying to keep her word,” he said.
“Dialogue without separatists will be a futile exercise. All the stakeholders must be taken on board to resolve the issue. In case the dialogue will not be initiated with the separatist then the peace in the Valley would be a distant dream.”