A senior separatist leader of Jammu and Kashmir has predicted an early resolution to the Kashmir issue, saying "countdown has already begun".
"I feel Jammu and Kashmir is heading for major solution within months and a countdown has already begun..." said Bilal Gani Lone, a senior executive member of the moderate faction of Hurriyat.
"I feel things will be cleared within three months and if the things move in right direction without vested interests making their presence, solution of Kashmir is within sight," Lone, who has been a supportive of India Pakistan peace process, said in an interview published in Epilogue, a new monthly magazine launched from Jammu.
Lone's father Abdul Gani Lone was assassinated by suspected terrorists during a political rally in Srinagar in 2002.
Asked about the nature of solution, Lone said, "I cannot comment on the type of solution but I feel views of all the three parties - India, Pakistan and people of Kashmir - will be included. I feel that Kashmiris on both sides (of dividing line) will have more say as far as final solution of Kashmir is concerned."
His assertions have come at a time when there is growing talk about an early solution to the Kashmir imbroglio.
Lone, who represents Peoples Conference in the Hurriyat Conference, ruled out the possibility of Hurriyat's participation in the state assembly elections scheduled next year.
"No way. Hurriyat will never participate in assembly elections... We feel unless the vexed issue of Kashmir is not solved there cannot be any compromise with our ideology," he said in the interview.