Hurriyat (M) Chief Says JK Belongs To Minorities as Much To Muslims
SRINAGAR (ONS) – With Mirwaiz Umer Farooq asserting that Jammu and Kashmir belonged as much to its minorities as to its Muslims, Valley Pandits and Sikhs on Saturday urged the Hurriyat (M) to represent their views too in its forthcoming visit to Pakistan.
We too are inhabitants of this land, minority representatives said in the Hurriyat (M)s latest round of public consultations ahead of the trip. At no cost must we be ignored.
The minorities threw their weight behind the visit, saying that Kashmir was an international issue needing be resolved urgently to save its people from further suffering, even as the Mirwaiz asserted that the visit would bring a new thinking and approach in resolving the long standing question.
The Mirwaiz, accompanied by Prof Abdul Ghani Bhat, Bilal Ghani Lone, Mukhtar Ahmad Waza, Musaddiq Aadil and Shahid-ul-Islam, assured the invitees to take up their demand of opening a bus service from Srinagar to the holy Hindu site of Shadra in Pakistan-administered-Kashmir.
We will take the demand up vigorously during our Pakistan visit, the Mirwaiz said when Pandit representatives raised the issue, asking to be allowed to visit their holy places across the LoC.
Minority delegates asked the Hurriyat (M) to visit Pakistan with an open mind and engage hardline groups too in seeking a solution to the Kashmir issue.
It is only by forgetting the past that the present and the future can be improved, they said. Both countries (India and Pakistan) are playing politics with the issue, and Kashmiris have to pay the price.
It is the inmates who are the first to rush to douse the flames when their house is on fire, they said, defending the Hurriyat (M)s Pak visit.
Speaking at the roundtable, the Mirwaiz said that his alliance believed in consulting all communities and sections in the state ahead of the visit to know their views and aspirations.
Even though Jammu and Kashmir is a Muslim-majority state, this land belongs to the states Pandits, Hindus, Sikhs and other communities also, he said.
Brothers and sisters from other communities too have as a right on the state as Muslims, he said.
Today, attitudes are changing in the Indian and Pakistani leaderships as well as the masses in the two countries. The notion of borders is ending, and people are coming closer, he said. We have undertaken the visit to play a role in resolving the Kashmir issue with a new thinking and approach, he said.
Speaking on the occasion, Bilal Ghani Lone admitted that there had been distances between the separatist leadership and the minorities.
But the situation was such that no one could give any guarantees, he said. I could I protect my neighbours when I could not even save my own father.
Lauding the minority members who stayed back in the valley despite mass migration, Lone said that the minorities too should draw a line as to what political outlook they support.
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