Fighting Flak, Mirwaiz Says Tehreek Can’t Be Held Hostage To Unity

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‘Need Solid, Vigorous Strategy To Resolve Kashmir In Fast-Changing World Political Attitude’

SRINAGAR: Faced with heavy flak over divisions in the separatist camp and his Pak visit yielding nothing because of it, the chairman of the Hurriyat (M), Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, on Saturday said that the Kashmir issue and movement could not be held hostage to the “beautiful word of unity” in view of the swift change in “world political attitudes and growing Indo-Pak proximity.”  

At a civil society roundtable ahead of their Pak visit, the Mirwaiz and other top Hurriyat (M) leaders were also assailed with warnings lest their talks with Islamabad go the “Beg-Parthasarthy way,”  and demands that the alliance to take Jammu and Ladakh on board over its Pak visit, besides talking to the militant leadership during the trip.

“We have always solicited, enjoined and advocated unity of thought and action, but given the speed with which political attitudes are changing in the world, and India and Pakistan coming closer, the sensitivity of the Kashmir issue and our national movement cannot be held hostage to the beautiful word of unity,” the Mirwaiz said as the alliance held another round of consultations, meeting civil society, intellectuals and business leaders from South Kashmir.  

The Mirwaiz made the remarks as delegates rued the lack of unity in the separatist camp, saying that the Hurriyat (M)’s Pak mission too would not succeed unless it forged unity.

“Shabir Shah has disappeared from the forum, Muhammad Yasin Malik is untraceable,   and Syed Ali Shah Geelani is heading a rival Hurriyat faction,” speakers said. “Then who will you represent?”

The roundtable urged separatists to chalk out a clear-cut strategy with a clearly defined destination.

“Though everyone supports the Hurriyat-Pak talks, care should be taken that they do not end like the Beg Parthsarthy process,” delegates said.

“The time for emotions and passions is over. Reality and facts have to be faced, and the Hurriyat should try to frame an agenda in view of the changed global scenario for its Pak visit,” they said.

THE MIRWAIZ TAKE

Speaking on the occasion, the chairman of  the Hurriyat (M), Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, said that finding out a permanent resolution to the Kashmir issue was the key agenda of the group’s Pak visit.

“Though the Hurriyat constitution delineates a certain methodology, but a concrete and vigorous strategy needs to be drawn up to meet the demands and needs of resolving the Kashmir issue in the changed geo-political scenario,” he said.

“We believe that it is the Kashmiris who are the basic party to this dispute, and want to examine what strategy India and Pakistan adopt to include Kashmiris as a party in their talks,” he said.

“Since other outstanding issues have emerged out of the Kashmir question, discussing them too has become the need of the hour,” he said.

“The Hurriyat wants that links between the people of divided Kashmir should be further eased by, for instance, allowing state subject certificates instead of permits for travel (between the two sides),” he said.

“Further, the leaderships from both sides should be allowed to meet at one place and discuss issues,” he said.

“The peaceful mass movement from 2008-10 has helped highlight the true reality of the Kashmir before the international community, and it is fully clear now that the freedom movement in Kashmir is totally the work of Kashmiris themselves and indigenous,” he said.

“The Hurriyat wants total accord and unity in the Kashmiri leadership, but movements around the world are a witness that differences over strategies are inevitable,” he said.

“Despite differences over strategy among the movement’s leadership, we have a clear and common goal,” he said.

“We have always solicited, enjoined and advocated unity of thought and action, but given the speed with which political attitudes are changing in the world, and India and Pakistan coming closer, the sensitivity of the Kashmir issue and our national movement cannot be held hostage to the beautiful word of unity,” he said.  

“The Kashmir issue is a very long-standing question, and one beset with immense complications, therefore discussing various proposals and strategies that are being proposed is neither an error nor a sin,” he said.

“During our visit, we will invite the prime ministers of India and Pakistan to prepare a climate to come and resolve the Kashmir issue on Kashmiri soil,” he said. Observer News Service

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