Kashmir Political Issue, Elections No Solution: Omar7 July 2011
Srinagar: Reiterating that Kashmir is a political issue which needs a political solution, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Thursday said the origin of the issue is linked with India, Pakistan and the people of Jammu and Kashmir. He said that elections are no solution to the Kashmir issue. “Kashmir is a political issue and needs political solution to make the sub-continent peaceful and prosperous,” Omar said while addressing a gathering after inauguration of Degree College here. He, however, said that developmental issues and basic daily needs cannot be negated. “I always say that no election is the solution of the political issue of Kashmir, be it Parliament, Legislative or Panchayat elections. Elections are not answer to the resolution of Kashmir,” he said. “We do not want to keep anyone in this misconception that by conducting elections we have solved the political issue of Jammu and Kashmir.” Maintaining that the need of basic amenities and developmental issue has nothing to do with the solution of Kashmir issue, he said providing electricity, power, water, colleges, roads and health institutions are not answer to the political issues. However, he added that he cannot keep the society wanting for these facilities and ask people to wait for the basic amenities till the political issues are resolved. Apparently referring towards separatists, he said, “I am not among the people who claim themselves to be representative but ruin the future of our children by keeping them away from classrooms, playfields and shops.” “I cannot force patients to wait for treatment in hospitals, neither I can tell the general people to sit idle on the process of development till the political issues are addressed,” he said. Referring to the recent visit of former Chief Minster Mufti Muhammad Sayed to Sumbal, Omar said that those condemning the coalition government have given nothing to the people. “They were not able to give single MW of power to the valley, during the last two years our government has launched hydro electric projects of about 1500 to 1700 MWs capacity,” he said. Praising his grandfather Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah, Omar said, “To achieve the goal of Naya Kashmir envisioned by Sher-i-Kashmir Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah peace and development is necessary in the valley for which our government is fighting on every front.” “We have put in place multifaceted developmental strategy in this direction and we are striving for peaceful and prosperous Jammu and Kashmir,” he said. The Chief Minister said that Valley received severe setback on the development front owing to three years’ continuous summer unrest. “We could not utilize the funds earmarked for creating educational and health sector infrastructure, construction of good roads, macadamization, etc. I appealed regularly to the people to give me a peaceful season to show you positive results on the development front”, he said emphasizing that peace is must for development. Omar Abdullah said that the initiative of SKEWPY to address the unemployment crisis was an innovative measure taken by his government. “More than 30,000 educated youth have been provided allowances under Voluntary Service Allowance scheme of SKEWPY”, he said advising the unemployed educated persons to get registered under the scheme and get allowances till they are absorbed in government or private sector. On the local demands presented to him, the Chief Minister said that the genuine demands of the locals would be given due weightage and considered appropriately. On the construction of Shadipora bridge over river Jehlum, the Chief Minister said that the foundation of the bridge was laid by Dr. Farooq Abdullah in 2002 but ‘during the tenure of those who are targeting present government on this issue didn’t do anything for its construction.’ He said the pace of work on the bridge would be accelerated.