April 2016 News

Farooq: Kashmiris Love Pak, Packages Won't Change That

21 April 2016
The Tribune (Chandigarh)
Suhail A Shah

Anantnag: Former Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah on Thursday said Pakistan is in the hearts of Kashmiri people and money would not change that. 'Kashmiris love Pakistan and economic packages are not going to change that. India has spent a lot of money in Kashmir but they have not been able to take out Pakistan from the hearts of Kashmiri people,' said Farooq. He was addressing a gathering in the Khannabal area of Anantnag on the death anniversary of senior National Conference leader Abdul Gani Shah. The former Union Minister was talking about the recent controversy at Srinagar's National Institute of Technology. 'People in Delhi complain that Kashmiri people, despite so many economic packages, keep loving Pakistan. I tell them Kashmiris will take the money and still keep following their heart,' he said. He said India and Pakistan should sort out their issues while emphasising that the status quo on Kashmir issue would remain intact. Talking to the media later in the day, Farooq called the removal of an Army bunker from Handwara town in north Kashmir a welcome step. 'Most of the bunkers should go,' he said. The NC president said the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) should also be reviewed and removed from areas wherever it was not needed. He raised the question that why wasn't AFSPA implemented in Chhattisgarh, 'All the time CRPF jawans are being killed there. Why don't they have AFSPA there?'