Geelani, Malik, Shah Not Enthused

24 May 2014
Rising Kashmir
Saba Firdous

Srinagar: Even as it has generated widespread interest, Pakistan premier Nawaz Sharif's decision to attend the swearing-in of Prime Minister designate Narendra Modi has evoked mixed reaction from Kashmiri separatist leaders. While Hurriyat (M) chairman, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq expressed optimism over the development, other leaders were more guarded in their response. While hailing Sharif's decision to attend Modi's swearing-in ceremony, Mirwaiz expressed hope and confidence that the move will help in creating a cordial atmosphere between the two countries. 'We welcome the fact that Nawaz has decided to come to Delhi. It will help in paving way for sustained India-Pakistan dialogue at various levels and address Kashmir issue,' he said. 'It should not be only an event but a sustained effort to maintain good relations,' Mirwaiz added. Hurriyat (G) chairman, Syed Ali Geelani said who so ever comes to India, including the leaders of Pakistan, should discuss Kashmir issue that would benefit larger political aspirations of the people of Kashmir. 'We cannot say anything about it yet. After he (Modi) takes oath as PM and then declares his policy vis-a-vis Jammu and Kashmir, only then we can comment,' Geelani said. 'Our past experiences have seen unrealistic approach of all the previous governments in New Delhi,' he added. While terming Modi's invitation to Sharif as political gimmick, Hurriyat Conference-Jammu and Kashmir (HCJK) chief, Shabir Shah said: 'We know about Modi's past. We cannot comment on it. It is just a political gimmick.' 'It's good that Nawaz has accepted the invitation. Modi is playing his cards but he cannot make India a super power unless he adopts a realistic approach towards Kashmir,' Shah added. Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chairman, Yasin Malik said the event has no significance for Kashmir's politics as the same is merely an oath ceremony. 'For us the event is not as significant as it is hyped. SAARC countries have been invited for Modi's oath ceremony including Pakistan,' said the JKLF chief. 'One shouldn't remain much optimistic over the event which is merely an oath ceremony and nothing else,' said Malik.