December 2017 News

Interlocutor Sharma Meets Gani Bhat, Another Separatist: Report

5 December 2017
Brighter Kashmir

Srinagar: Government of India's 'special representative' for Kashmir talks Dineshwar Sharma has met senior Hurriyat leader Abdul Gani Bhat and one more separatist leader during his second leg of Kashmir visit last week, a media report said. According to a report in Economic Times, the former Intelligence Bureau head Sharma drove to the residence-cum-office of Abdul Gani Bhat in Wazir Bagh Srinagar on November 27 around 10:30 pm in Srinagar where another Hurriyat leader was present during the meeting, which went on for around an hour. The meeting assumes significance as the joint Hurriyat leadership led by Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Yasin Malik have stayed away from the dialogue initiative, claiming the exercise was a 'waste of time', and questioned the sincerity of New Delhi. When the newspaper asked about the meeting, Bhat refused to talk about his engagement with Sharma, but quickly added that his party - the Muslim Conference - was principally in favour of dialogue and 'open to meet anybody who seeks a dialogue on Kashmir, including Sharma'. 'Our doors are open for dialogue. Why shouldn't we talk to people? We do it with pressmen. We do it sometimes with members of a delegation. We did it with Yashwant Sinha? Why not with some other people who come to see us? We feel that till the time Pakistan is not involved, there will be no breakthrough,' Bhat had told the newspaper. Meanwhile, Bhat said he will tell at the appropriate time if he has recently met New Delhi appointed interlocutor Dineshwar Sharma. 'I never shy to tell truth and truth about talks is incomplete unless this process becomes reality between India and Pakistan,' Bhat told local newsgathering agency KNS. Bhat said if he would have met Sharma, 'I would have not hesitated to tell all that I met and talk'. I will tell at appropriate time weather I met him or not and if I met him, what I told him,' he said. The senior Hurriyat leader said the methodology India has chosen to start the dialogue process is incorrect, as it can't sideline Pakistan. 'Indian Govt's initiative (D Sharma appointment as Interlocutor) is good but methodology of the dialogue process is not correct as New Delhi is trying to bypass Pakistan which is in no way a good sign,' he said. He said every Kashmir wants resolution of K-issue and even enemies of Kashmiris now wish to see issue resolved once for all. 'India must correct its methodology of talks by initiate a purposeful process with Pakistan. By sidelining Pakistan India cannot achieve a bit in Kashmir,' he said. Bhat said if the pro- freedom leadership is having any contradiction, controversy or misunderstanding between them any time, it is because of the impact of Indo-Pak politics or methodology to address Kashmir issue. Bhat termed the break-up of Hurriyat in 2003 a big loss to the movement 'as leadership was representing Kashmir collectively.'