Did Shah Cross India's 'new Red Line' On Talks With Pakistan?

23 August 2015
Greater Kashmir
Abid Bashir

Srinagar: It was the senior separatist leader Shabir Ahmad Shah again who crossed India's 'new red line' on the NSA-level talks with Pakistan that were called off by Islamabad last night. Shah, who was first to reach New Delhi for a meeting with Pakistan National Security Advisor Sartaj Aziz, was detained immediately after landing at the Delhi airport. This is the second time that Shah has become the first separatist to reach New Delhi soon after an invitation from Pakistan for a meeting or talks. In March this year, he was first to reach New Delhi on invitation related to observance of Pakistan Day at the Pakistan High Commission. Shah was taken to a guest house in South Delhi yesterday after being detained at the Delhi airport on Saturday. 'I was whisked away from the airport and caged in a room. This attitude of Modi-led regime has exposed the BJP and its anti-Kashmir policies before the world community. Those who claim to be champions of democracy are stopping people from meeting Pakistan's NSA,' he told Greater Kashmir. 'Just an hour ago, policemen in civvies left the place where I am staying,' he said this evening. 'I will be flying to Srinagar on Monday.' On his moves to reach Delhi first, Shah said on March 23 this year, 'I had an invitation on the same day. And this time, I was invited on August 23. It's not that I had come for the first time to Delhi to meet Pakistan leaders. Even when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister, I have been meeting the Pakistan High Commissioner.' 'Pakistan is our well wisher, sympathizer and wants to resolve the issue of Kashmir. The delay is on part of New Delhi, which continues to follow its dictatorial attitude.' Shah also took a dig at India's Minister for External Affairs Sushma Swraj for making Shimla agreement 'a reason to avoid Hurriyat leaders of Kashmir.' 'The fact remains that New Delhi is not serious about discussing Kashmir. We will not be cowed down by the pressure tactics of BJP government and instead intensify our efforts to find a solution which suits the aspirations of people of Kashmir.' Shah, who heads the Democratic Freedom Party (DFP), said rigidity and stubbornness is no solution. Senior separatist leader and National Front Chairman, Nayeem Khan said confining Shah to a room is 'atrocious.' 'By doing this, Delhi is trying to defame Kashmir movement and Kashmiri leadership. Pakistan had invited credible leadership of Kashmir for feedback and suggestions, which didn't suit New Delhi.' He said opposing the meeting of Hurriyat leaders with Pakistan's NSA 'signifies shortsightedness of New Delhi.'