Your Kashmir Policy Out Of Sync With Kashmiri Aspirations: Geelani Tells Pak Govt

SRINAGAR: The chairman of the Hurriyat (G) has told Pakistan that its present policy on Kashmir does not conform to the aspirations and sacrifices of the Kashmiri people, a spokesman said on Friday.

Geelani told the Pakistan high commissioner to New Delhi, Salman Bashir, that by its “criminal silence” on life sentences awarded to pro-freedom Kashmiris and other excess, Islamabad was rubbing salt on the wounds of the Kashmiri masses, the Hurriyat (G) spokesman, Ayaz Akbar, said.

“If we are not free of the forcible Indian occupation in the near future, we will leave the movement to the coming generations, but never surrender before India,” Geelani was quoted as having told Bashir, his deputy, and other diplomatic functionaries at his Malviya Nagar quarters in New Delhi.

“If the Indian occupation of Kashmir continues, water flowing to Pakistan in the region’s rivers too will be stopped, and the country’s land will turn barren,” Geelani said.  

The Hurriyat (G) chairman held former Pak president Gen Pervez Musharraf responsible for the present “disastrous situation” in Pakistan and Afghanistan, saying that he had put the very survival of the country at stake by “bartering away national pride and honour.”

The Pak envoy told Geelani that the people of Pakistan held him (Geelani) in extremely high regard, and were very keen on his visit.

When the Hurriyat (G) chief asked what the agenda and purpose of the visit would have been, the Pakistan envoy asserted that Islamabad had invited him for consultations and to hear him out.

Geelani replied: “If that is the case, then take this message from me to the rulers of Pakistan – do not commit the mistake of deviating from Pakistan’s national policy on Kashmir, for, the price will have to paid not only by Kashmiris, but even Pakistan will not be spared its far-reaching consequences.”

“India has been suppressing the Kashmiris’ right to freedom for the past 65 years, and using its military for mass extermination and trampling on our honour,” he said.

“Hundreds of people are in jail even today, and a deadly campaign of awarding life sentences to Kashmiris has been launched,” he said.

“Pakistan should have raised its voice and protested against these atrocities and excesses, but on the contrary, its government has not only adopted a criminal silence, but is also building new ties with every passing day,” he said.

“Pakistani rulers shower praise on their Indian counterparts whose hands are stained with the blood of Kashmiris, and invite them for visits,” he said.

Commenting on trade ties between the two countries and the cross LoC trade initiative, Geelani said that Kashmir was not an economic or a commercial issue, but a life-and-death matter for the Kashmiri nation.

“It is a grave political and human issue where an entire nation has been enslaved by force, and people have to pay with their lives for raising their voice against this servitude,” he said.

“The bloody line drawn across Kashmir has devoured thousands of Kashmiris, and selling onions and potatoes across it will not change the glaring reality,” he said.

“Transporting vegetables (across the LoC) is a mockery of Kashmiri sacrifices and aspirations, and amounts to rubbing salt into our wounds,” he said.

“Pakistan is going through the most critical phase of its history, while India is standing triumphant in every way,” he said.

“Therefore, any kind of haste with respect to the Kashmir issue or the talks process is inadvisable,” he said.

“This precipitate rush can prove costly for both Kashmiris and Pakistan, and turn out to be a bad bargain,” he said.

“India wants to take undue advantage of the explosive situation in Pakistan, and the international scenario too is currently in its favour,” he said.

Asserting that his visit to Pakistan would be a futile exercise in such circumstances, Geelani said that the people and the government of the country were fully aware of is stand.

“The Kashmir issue is linked to the partition of the subcontinent, and Pakistan has supported the Kashmiri right to self-determination right from day one,” he said.

“It is regrettable that we should be required to recount our plight before Pakistan even after 65 years. It is regrettable that Pakistani rulers should be in the need of hearing us out even after 65 years,” he said.

“The entire blame of the Kashmir issue remaining hanging lies on India. It is India that has backtracked on our right to self-determination,” he said.

“When everything we have is in Kashmir, for what do we have to go to Pakistan?”

 “This is a routine kind of visit. Such visits have been taking place in the past as well, without showing even an inch of progress,” he said.

“We are not differing with the leaders who are visiting Pakistan because we are fighting for power in Kashmir,” he said. Our opposition is based on principles because we believe that unless India brings flexibility in its intransigent policy, and accepts the disputed status of Kashmir, talks of any kind will not prove fruitful,” he said.

“Talks, be they between India and Pakistan, between the Kashmiri leadership and India, or between the Kashmiri leadership and Pakistan, they have yielded nothing in the past and nothing is expected in the future as well,” he said.

“On the contrary, India gains time by this process, and succeeds in deceiving the world into believing that it is trying to resolve the Kashmir issue at some level or other,” he said.

“Pointless talks also drive human rights violations in Kashmir into the background, and no worthwhile notice is taken of the excesses,” he said.

“We are not opposed to talks in principle, nor are we a fanatic lot, but for a result-oriented process, it is necessary that India give up its atoot ang litany and be prepared to face ground reality by an unambiguous acceptance of the Kashmiri right to self-determination,” he said.

According to the Hurriyat (G) spokesman, the Pakistani diplomats told Geelani that they would discharge the duty of conveying his stand to their government, and try their best to convey the same to the Pakistani people without exaggeration or detraction.

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