July 2016 News

Pak Needs To Change Policy Of Provoking Kashmiri Youth: Mehbooba

24 July 2016
The Daily Excelsior

Srinagar: Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti today lashed out at Pakistan and said the 'country needs to change its policy of provoking Kashmiri youth for picking up guns'. 'It (Pakistan) says that we are victims of terror; their 146 children died in school attack in a single day and people fear to go inside their mosques. And today when a Kashmiri children takes up gun they call them leaders and say they are doing good thing but when their own children, some from madrassas (Islamic seminaries) etc back home take up gun they attack them with drones and then hang them in military courts,' the Chief Minister said while speaking to reporters here. Referring to Pakistan's glorification of slain Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Muzzafar Wani, the Chief Minister said: 'I feel that Pakistan, who is seen through extreme sympathetic eye by Kashmiri people, has this time committed excess, adding: ' They provoke our children to pick up gun and then tell them you will become our leader in case you get killed in an encounter. I think they need to change this policy.' Mehbooba said 'the political process started by late Mufti Mohammad Sayeed from opening routes to healing touch, somewhere that has stopped and only governance and development were talked about and to what limit that happened, is again a matter of discussion'. 'The roadmap by Mufti Sahib and Vajpayee Ji that borders cannot be changed but made irrelevant so that people move across and there is trade. Manmohan Singh also took the process forward but the political process, the dialogue process, which started with L K Advani and the separatist leaders here, was not taken forward,' she said. The Chief Minister said the routes which were opened then have been stalled there. 'Some buses move from here, some from there, but the communication, banking facilities, exchange of students, doctors and civil society, which should have been there, so that we see what is there and what problems they have and they come here, but that did not happen,' she said and added that 'the politicians are responsible for that'. 'The Governments here, be it the NC-Congress Government before ours, or the UPA in Delhi, we all are responsible for this that we think the situation has to be normalized whenever it is bad in J&K, but we forget once the situation is normal. This is the reason that my father took two months to form a Government with the BJP,' said Mehbooba. She said that his father made an Agenda of Alliance to 'show a way to take J-K out of the morass and that cannot be done only by money or packages, there are some issues like dialogue, peace process, winning hearts of people here, lakhs of kanals of land under security forces, which they do not need now - they needed it before but not now - or camps, if you return them to us, we will construct colleges, universities or parks so that people feel that our situation is improving as security forces were moving backwards and institutions and recreational facilities are being constructed there'. As far as AFSPA is concerned, the Chief Minster said, they were not saying that it should be revoked at a time. 'But, as a test case, on experimental basis, if it was revoked slowly and it was seen how the situation remained in such areas. If the situation remained well, then it should have been revoked entirely or it should have been re-implemented if you felt the militancy did not allow it to be revoked,' Mehbooba said. Hailing Prime Minister Modi, she said: 'Our Prime Minister's attempt was very good when he went to Lahore. It was not an ordinary gesture that the Prime Minister of a country goes like that, but unfortunately then Pathankot happened and because of that the process was stalled,' adding: 'I firmly believe in what Vajpayee said that you can change friends but not neighbours, so till the time both the countries do not keep good relations and keep the situation better, neither they nor us can progress.' 'Our Prime Minister had made a beginning by going to Lahore: that is the only way to remove poverty in both the countries and take J-K out of the morass because if there is J-K, then there is the country. The start has to be made from somewhere, the experiments have to be from somewhere like it (AFSPA) be revoked from 25 or 40 police stations to see the reaction', Mehbooba said. 'In the same manner, I think, there is a need to take bold measures because the people of J&K are our own people. We do not have to do this for China or Pakistan but for us. I hope the Home Minister, whose statement in the Parliament was very good, he tried to reach out to the people of J&K, that has not been missed here. I think today we have an opportunity, for the whole country as well as for Pakistan, that if they are really our well-wishers, then they should talk,' the Chief Minister added.