September 2002 News

We will never allow trifurcation of J&K: Sonia

19 September 2002
The Hindu

Chennai: Describing the problem in Jammu and Kashmir as ''serious'', the Congress president, Sonia Gandhi, today called for an unconditional dialogue with the representatives of all the three regions of the State, including separatists. But, she firmly opposed any idea of trifurcating the State, which she said would strengthen Pakistan''s plans and promote terrorism. Addressing an election rally amid tight security arrangements in the Sher-e-Kashmir stadium park, Ms Gandhi said the Kashmir problem could be solved only through a dialogue and the gun had no role. She asked Pakistan to stop aiding and abetting infiltrators and militancy saying ''by doing so, it will not succeed in weakening Kashmir''s relations with the rest of the country''. The Pakistani guns have only brought death and destruction to Kashmir and have snatched peace and tranquillity from the people. Ms. Gandhi said the Congress wanted resolution of the crisis and ''we are for an unconditional dialogue with the people from all three regions of Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh and the aspirations and needs of all the three regions have to be taken into consideration''. She advocated talks with the separatists, but without naming them. ''Bila sharat bat cheet un logon ke saath bhi honee chahiye jin key man mein shak ho'' (Dialogue should be initiated also with those who have doubts in their hearts''. Ms. Gandhi came down heavily on those demanding trifurcation of the State and said ''We will never allow trifurcation and in the Indian Constitution, there is possibility of taking care of the aspirations of the people of any of the regions.'' The NDA Government in Delhi was being run by the RSS. These were the people who were responsible for the bloodbath in Gujarat and were still trying to vitiate the atmosphere there, she alleged. She said the ruling National Conference in the State ''has been keeping the people in the dark and misleading them for the last many decades''. She accused the Governments at the Centre and in the State of failure to restore peace and protect the lives of the people. Reiterating her party''s support to the Centre in restoring peace in J&K, she said ''we have also stood behind the Government but it failed to make any serious effort on this front''.


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