Team Yashwant Calls On Geelani Again

Srinagar: Hurriyat Conference (G) said that three members of the Indian delegation headed by Former External Affairs Minister Yashwant Sinha, today called on the chairman Hurriyat (G), Syed Ali Geelani at 10 am at his Hyderpora residence, which included Air Vice Marchal Kapil Kak, Senior Journalist Bharat Booshan and Executive Director of the Centre for Dialogue and Reconciliation Shashooba Barway.

According to a Hurriyat statement, the delegation stressed upon the issue of education and were of the opinion that students should not lose one complete academic year and government authorities are also worried about it.

The five-member civil society delegation led by senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha Thursday completed its three-day visit to Kashmir during which it met various stakeholders to "understand the situation" and "share the pain" of the people here.

"We came here to understand the situation and share the pain of the people. We will sit down (after going back to Delhi) and see how we can proceed further," Sinha told reporters after completing meetings with various sections in the valley, including separatists.

Sinha said the delegation, which does not have any official status, met Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti yesterday and Governor N N Vohra today.

Since its arrival here on Tuesday, the delegation met hardline Hurriyat Conference chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani, moderate separatist leaders Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Abdul Gani Bhat and representatives of Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry -- the apex trade body of Kashmir.

Sinha, former External Affairs Minister, disagreed when asked whether the meeting with the separatists could be seen as a breakthrough since they opened their doors to the delegation members unlike the members of all-party delegation who were turned away by Geelani earlier in September.

"It was good on their part they decided to meet us. We had extensive discussions with various stakeholders here," he said.

Happy That Geelani Didn't Shut Door: Sinha

Former Finance Minister and senior Bhartiya Janata Party leader Yashwant Sinha Thursday said that the delegation he headed in Kashmir Valley had a great impact on the people and situation to some extent normalized after their meeting with all the stake-holders from past three days. He said that he is extremely happy that Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz and other separatist leaders welcomed him and didn't shut their doors for the visiting delegation.

"I don't know why Geelani didn't meet the members of All Party Delegation, but I am happy they (separatist leaders) met us and put their point of view in an amicable way," he said adding that meeting Geelani was a pleasure.

"Our only motive was to listen from all the stake-holders. We didn't say anything but only listened from these stake-holders. We are satisfied and will go happily to New Delhi/' he said.

Responding; to a question, Yashwant Sinha said people are the best judge and they can say whether our visit will bear fruits or not "Whatever is possible and whatever is in our hands we will do it for Kashmir' he said

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