September 2003 News

UN Should Take Over Kashmir For Two Years

24 September 2003
News Network International

Srinagar: Fareeda Behanji, chairperson, Kashmir Mass Movement has asserted that handing Kashmir over to United Nations for two years can be the best possible option for India and Pakistan for a sincere beging to end the 56 years old dispute between the two nuclear rivals. Talking to Greater Kashmir at her Rajbagh headquarters, Fareeda said her party has taken a particular position regarding Kashmir issue. 'I believe our stand is concurrent with the wishes of the people as well as the principles of the movement,' she said. 'The status quo will have to change, atleast for now,' Fareeda, who is among the forerunners in Geelani led Hurriyat, said adding both the countries have their stated positions which is perceived as a block in the road to resolution and the ultimate peace. Acknowledging that the ripples began to surface in the erstwhile multi-party alliance since she returned from Pakistan after a fortnight long visit to the country on valid travel documents. 'I had the privilege to have President Musharaf's audience in my 2001 visit to Islamabad. He sought my views on the resistance movement in Kashmir. I briefed him objectively telling him difference of opinion is deep rooted, however, unity is still most sought after in the Azadi camp,' Fareeda divulged. She said she did initiate a process of reconciliation among the embittered individuals and as a part of that wrote three letters to then APHC chairman, Professor Abdul Gani Bhat pleading for a general debate, involving all parties of APHC, over the brewing dissent. 'But, my pleas were unceremoniously dumped only to facilitate what happened now,' said Fareeda, facing charges of being involved in a deadly blast in New Delhi that claimed several lives in 1996 and has been bailed out after serving a five year jail term. On the new organisational structure within Hurriyat Conference (Gilani) Fareeda said her party had proposed a democratic hierarchy with two provincial heads as vice-chairmen as also two general secretaries and the grass root structure with units at district, tehsil and block level. 'The new system will not be a royal club of few rather it would be a democratic institution with a well thought out constitution at its base.' Replying to a query on how far the new leadership was able to lead the freedom movement in Kashmir, Fareeda reiterated her stance that petty differences apart Gilani will not let his nation down. 'And God forbid if that happens, the constituents are not guided by any vested interests. In fact, our support to the new formation is primarily driven by a deep sense of responsibility,' Fareeda, lone woman leader in Geelani's faction with a liberal texture. Asked if she could prevail upon Bilal Beigh, her brother and Chief Commander of a Pakistan based militant outfit, Islamic Front for initiating a ceasefire, Fareeda said, 'We as a political party have a definite style of functioning. That is striving for the right to self-determination democratically and peacefully.


Return to the Archives 2003 Index Page

Return to Home Page