‘Dialogue is the Only Way,’ Says Farooq Abdullah on India-Pakistan Bilateral Issues

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Former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Farooq Abdullah on Saturday said that “dialogue is the only way to resolve” bilateral issues between India and Pakistan.

National Conference MP referred to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war to drive home the point that “war is not an option” and said that it “brings only death and destruction”.

“Dialogue is the only way. You are seeing the ongoing war in Ukraine. The economy in Europe has taken a hit due to the war. The United States of America remains unharmed. He asked who are the people who were being killed in the war – It is the people of Ukraine,” the NC MP said.

Farooq said that both countries (India and Pakistan) should remind that “war is not an option but dialogue is the way forward”.

On a question about the Centre claiming peace, prosperity and development heralding into the Kashmir post the abrogation of article 370, Farooq said, “Open the borders. We will embrace the peace”.

Speaking to media in Srinagar, the 85-year-old NC veteran said,” Both (India-Pakistan) nations should sit and solve the Kashmir issue…Nothing will happen from war”.

“Both the countries should come clean on Kashmir. We have been fed up with duplicity and double standards. Unless both countries don’t sit across the table with sincerity and integrity, it is a Tamasha (show-off),” he said.

He was responding to the “changing political environment” in the Kashmir valley where a Tiranga rally was organised ahead of the Independence Day celebrations on August 15.

He said that terrorism is still “kicking and thriving” in Kashmir. “Encounters are raging. Jawans are being killed. People were being killed”.

“If peace is returning back to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, why is there a spike in terrorism-related incidents”, said, Farooq.

There has been a “spike” in terrorism-related incidents in Rajouri and Poonch divisions in the Jammu division in the last few weeks. This comes before the Independence Day.

One terrorist was shot dead and another was injured as an infiltration bid was foiled in the Poonch sector on Monday morning. Security forces recovered arms and ammunition from the terrorist killed along the Line of Control. While one terrorist was killed in Rajouri earlier this month.

Meanwhile, after the constitutional changes and reorganization of the erstwhile State of Jammu-Kashmir, the Union territories of Jammu-Kashmir and Ladakh have been fully integrated into the mainstream of the nation.

As a result, all the rights enshrined in the Constitution of India and benefits of all the Central Laws that were being enjoyed by other citizens of the country are now available to the people of Jammu-Kashmir and Ladakh.

The change has brought about socio-economic development in both the new UT’s i.e. UT of Jammu-Kashmir and the UT of Ladakh. Empowerment of people, removal of unjust Laws, bringing in equity and fairness to those discriminated since ages who are now getting their due along with comprehensive development are few of the important changes that are ushering both the new Union Territories towards the path of peace and progress.

With the conduct of elections of Panchayati Raj Institutions such as Panches and Sarpanches, Block Development Councils and District Development Councils, the 3-tier system of grassroots-level democracy has now been established in Jammu and Kashmir.

Hosting of the G-20 Tourism Working Group meeting at Srinagar in May 2023 was a watershed event in the history of valley tourism and the country “proudly displayed” its resolute commitment to the world that “secessionist/terrorist region can be converted into a region where even international dignitaries can be invited and global events can be held.

Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh have witnessed profound ameliorative, affirmative and progressive changes in the last four years encompassing its entire governance – including the developmental activities, public administration and security matters which have positively impacted every resident irrespective of caste, creed or religion.

Source: Live Mint