February 2000 News

Pak will create more trouble in JK before Clinton’s visit: Farooq

13 February 2000
Daily Excelsior

JAIPUR: Pakistan will create more destruction in Jammu and Kashmir before President Clinton’s coming visit to India to give an impression that it is not behind such activities, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Dr Farooq Abdullah said today.

It would try to drive home the point that stepped up militant activities in the state were the handiwork of ultras belonging to Afghanistan and Sudan, Abdullah told a convention of Rajasthan private doctors here.

The world should now realise that Pakistan is the father and the mother of terrorism in India, he said maintaining the Kashmir issue should be resolved bilaterally.

If Pakistan’s proxy war in Jammu and Kashmir was not fully contained, it would lead to a war with that country, warned Abdullah.

It was high time Pakistan should be sternly asked to keep its hands away from the state even if that led to war with that country, he said. Let us decide this once for all. On Clinton’s visit, Abdullah said India should concentrate on improving ties with the US instead of bothering whether he should make a stopover in Pakistan or not.

It is President Clinton’s concern where he should go or not. We should not involve ourselves in the media hype concerning his visit.

Abdullah said that after General Pervez Musharraf came to power in Pakistan, terrorism had increased in J and K.

He said that after suffering defeat in Kargil sector, Pakistan had been "promoting terrorism."

He apprehended that terrorism would be stepped up in J and K in the wake of US President Bill Clinton’s visit to India. Though the door for talks with Pakistan should always remain open, the time had come to "decide" issues, he asserted.

Dr Abdullah ruled out the possibility of mediation by the United States in settling issues between India and Pakistan, asserting that the issues were bilateral. However, Mr Clinton’s visit to India would strengthen relations between the countries, he felt.

"We are not concerned with Mr Clinton’s visit to any other country," the Chief Minister said.

On the recent hijack of Indian Airlines flight IC 814 he felt the country’s response was not "strong" enough.

On granting of autonomy to Jammu and Kashmir, Abdullah said the issue should be decided constitutionally and not by creating confusion in minds of the people.

"We demand autonomy and not independence." Dr Abdullah said while talking to media persons here."We are demanding whatever is possible within the constitution."

Referring to the proposed review of the constitution, he pointed out that when five decades of functioning was being looked into then the State’s affairs should also be taken care of.

The debate on the review was good, he said.

About the functioning of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) Government, he said that Centre had its difficulties while the states had theirs but both were facing "financial crunch."

On the Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh Government’s decision to allow the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh employees to join, Dr Abdullah said that if this Government was so then he could also open ‘’Jamaete Islam’’ for his State’s employees.

Asked whether Article 370 should be abrogated, he said law experts should look into it. (AGENCIES)


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