At a time when the Centre is preparing ground for Kashmir talks, the state’s chief minister and his father, a Union minister and a former CM, seem to differ on how effective the process can be in resolving the vexed issue.
Omar Abdullah, the youngest chief minister the state has seen, was optimistic about New Delhi’s efforts. “The focus of the government of India should be to engage Jammu and Kashmir on a political platform.
However, all sections need to be engaged. When every shade of opinion is brought to table only then a consensus would evolve,” the CM said at the inauguration of a two-day All India Editors Conference on Tuesday.
Farooq, Union minister of new and renewable energy, didn’t share the optimism. “Tragedy with Delhi is that they begin with dialogue but they don’t know what the hell they are talking about,” said Farooq.
Omar was all for engaging Pakistan. “When internal and external dialogue works together only then there would be some forward movement.”
But, Farooq had a different view. “Let all keep in mind that this state can’t become part of Pakistan. We have a problem with Pakistan and we need to sort this out for peace in South Asia”.
Omar praised New Delhi for generous grants for the state’s development, but Farooq accused the Centre of failing to act on the recommendations of working groups on development.