September 2006 News

PDP hails self-rule statement

25 September 2006
The Hindu
Special Correspondent

Srinagar: People's Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti on Monday welcomed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's statement that self-rule was being discussed as one of the solutions to the Kashmir problem At a public meeting at Kargil, Ms. Mufti said the statement indicated the seriousness and sincerity of purpose with which the leadership of the country was approaching the Kashmir problem. Self- rule was the only formula that not only encompassed the political and economic aspects of the problem, but also took care of the aspirations of all regions and parts of the State. Any solution that did not accommodate the aspirations of all regions could never be viable. The time was appropriate for the complete cessation of hostilities, Ms. Mufti said and urged Dr. Singh to consider a measured and systematic reduction of troops as announced by him in 2004. This would go a long way in consolidating the people's trust in the political process. 'The reduction of troops can be offset by strengthening the police by raising more battalions, comprising people from all the regions of the State. Such a move would help the State Government in tackling the unemployment problem too.'


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