PM should start dialogue to ensure peace in Kashmir:Congress


New Delhi: Making a strong pitch for dialogue to contain the ongoing violence in Kashmir, Congress on Wednesday said Prime Minister NarendraModi should ensure that the situation in the Valley is brought under control before “talking about other things” like Balochistan. The Prime Minister is talking about something else when “the house is on fire”, senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said and called for “saving the crown” of the country by talking to the local people.

“Our Prime Minister is international. (While visiting foreign countries) he should also pay attention to what is happening here. He should focus on where the situation is bad,” the Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha told reporters at the Congress headquarters. Asked about the Prime Minister’s reference to Balochistan and PoK in his Independence Day speech, Azad said Modi should first ensure that the situation in the Valley is brought under control before “talking about other things”.

“There have been deaths of a few persons daily, may it be of civilians or security forces… They are our own people. He does not speak a word about it,” he said. A former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister, Azad said Modi started doing politics over Pakistan even before taking oath as Prime Minister by rolling out the red carpet to its Premier Nawaz Sharif. Modi had even attended a wedding in Pakistan.

“But he will not say anything on saving the crown (sir kataj) of the country,” he said. He had got as many as six opportunities in the just concluded monsoon session to speak about Kashmir, but “he remained in his room”, Azad said. “It goes to the credit of the opposition to force debate (on Kashmir) in Parliament. But there is no follow up, no dialogue. Have a dialogue with our own people.”

Replying to a question, Azad said he has not seen the statement of senior party leader and former Home Minister P Chidambaram that Congress, National Conference and, “if willing”, the PDP should come together to find a solution to the unrest in the valley.

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