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HindustanTimes Sat,23 Aug 2014

Omar's 'other options for Pak' remark comes under fire from separatists

Peerzada Ashiq, Hindustan Times  Srinagar:, October 22, 2013
First Published: 19:41 IST(22/10/2013) | Last Updated: 19:42 IST(22/10/2013)

Chief minister Omar Abdullah calling for availing 'other options' against Pakistan in the wake of rising skirmishes on the Line of Control (LoC) and international border evoked sharp response from separatists and mainstream political parties in the valley on Tuesday.

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Hardline Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali Geelani described Omar and his family 'innate Pakistan's enemies'.

"Omar has inherited Pakistan bashing from his father Farooq Abdullah, who would call for an attack on Azad Kashmir (Pakistan occupied Kashmir). It has become a hobby for the National Conference (NC) to lash out at Pakistan," he said.

The 83-year-old separatist leader alleged that Omar's statement is "nothing but tactics to remain relevant to Delhi".

"Whenever the NC feels that people like Ghulam Nabi Azad (of the Congress) and Mufti Muhammad Sayeed (of the PDP) are being promoted, he (Omar) resorts to Pakistan bashing to prove he is more loyal than the king," he said.

Geelani accused the chief minister of advocating war with Pakistan when the entire border clashes are under the cloud of suspicion.

"The war cry of Omar is reflecting nothing but his childish behaviour," he said.

Moderate Hurriyat also took pot shots at the chief minister for his 'other option' remark.
"Omar's statement is very provocative. He has to realise that any war between two nuclear countries will impact the entire South Asia," said moderate Hurriyat spokesman.

He reiterated that "there is no alternative to a principled dialogue process". "It is a stark reality that Kashmir is a dispute. The statements calling Kashmir an integral part will not change the status of the dispute," the spokesman said.

There are also a few voices of expressing concern over Omar's statement from mainstream political parties.

Awami Ittihaad Party chairman engineer Rashid, a legislator from north Kashmir's Langate constituency, said: "Omar should remember that the Kashmir dispute is the mother of all tensions, including the one at the LoC. Unfortunately the chief minister lashed out at Pakistan like Dr Farooq Abdullah, who had been advocating bombing on PoK in the past," said Rashid.

The chief minister on Monday had said that India should explore other options if Pakistan continues to violate truce along the borders.

"India should, in very strong words, tell Pakistan that such behaviour won't be tolerated. We have to explore other options if talks are not helping put an end to ceasefire violations,'' he had said.


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