Srinagar: The government’s “unilateral” and “arbitrary” decision to withdraw Jammu and Kashmir’s special status only further complicated the “dispute” in the erstwhile state, the Hurriyat Conference said Thursday on the second anniversary of the revocation of Article 370.
The separatist amalgam said in a statement, “On this occasion, would also like to draw attention of the citizens of India and the world at large, that the present Indian Government’s actions of August 5, 2019 has only complicated the dispute further over the state of J&K.”
“This is illustrated by the fact that it ignited the flames along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) even as some measure of calm has been introduced along the Line of Control,” it said, alluding to the standoff with China in eastern Ladakh.
It reiterated its strong resentment and opposition to the “unilateral and arbitrary actions” related to Articles 370 and 35-A.
New Delhi would argue, the Hurriyat said, that before August 2019 “Kashmir was the main trouble spot in the state, today it is faced with four trouble spots of Leh, Kargil and Jammu as there is disaffection in these regions too”.
It alleged the government continues to “assault” the locals by incarcerating political prisoners and youths and “intimidating” them by arrests and bringing in arbitrary and anti-people laws.
“Going forward, Hurriyat is convinced that the Government of India must accept the need to address the Kashmir dispute, engage with those who truly represent the political will and aspirations of its people, and defuse the building geopolitical pressures in the region along its northern and western borders,” it said.
It also urged the government to resume engagement with Pakistan.
The Hurriyat said it has had a long-standing policy of engagement in meaningful dialogue among all the stakeholders that sees the situation on the ground for what it is, and encourages dialogue rather than armed confrontation.
“Hurriyat is cognisant that although we cannot match the muscle of status quo powers, our political education in the last thirty years has been significant and we appreciate all platforms that give us a voice. These platforms must be created and we should be allowed to participate in them – not only to allow our voice as peoples representatives be heard, but because it is just.
“It is time that the conflict over the state of J&K is resolved so that not just Kashmir, but all of South Asia can look forward to living up to its collective potential,” it added.