In his rare public appearance, Peoples Conference head Sajad Ghani Lone on Thursday said it was not a mistake to contest Lok Sabha polls and will contest upcoming assembly polls too. But, Lone, warned of guns returning to Kashmir if the civilised institution of dialogue backed by the people does not yield any results to resolve the Kashmir problem.
"Can we think of Kashmir with a child born who is not saddled by the harsh realities and uncertainties?...I am scared if the civilized route of dialogue, given a chance by the people, does not yield results, the next step will be taking up of arms and guns," said Lone, first well-known separatist leader to contest Parliamentary polls in 2008, at a conference organized by ministry of external affairs and the Ficci in Srinagar. The conclave was on India's strategic policy and was collaborated by Kashmir University's department of political science.
Lone emphasized the need to address both internal, Delhi-Srinagar, and external, Delhi-Islamabad, dimensions of the Kashmir problem. "Internal and external dimensional are equally important. But in the internal dimension, New Delhi decides who to meet and why to meet and is not inclusive as it should be," said Lone.
Lone, who is author of 'Achievable Nationhood' document with his approach to resolve the problem, said stones and bullets cannot chase away India from Kashmir. "India is a power. The redrawing of boundaries is not possible now. Let's stop acting as cry baby and achieve the achievable. It's better to have something in hand then nothing. Let it begin with economic independence and terminology of sovereignty," said Lone adding "India is neither falling like Sudan to allow referendum nor emancipated as Europe to give self-rule to places like Greeland. We need to have interim solution to reach the final solution," said Lone.
Demanding a structural dialogue process, Lone said the onus to change the perception of people here about dialogue institution and its delivery lies with New Delhi. "The dialogue process should not be repetition of past mistakes. The government should set policy, and parameters now," said Lone.
Lashing out at New Delhi-appointed three-member interlocutors, Lone accused them of stereotyping and dissecting monolithic Kashmir into Gujjar and Paharis. "There are minority and majority aspirations. Ladakh might me at a high altitude and difficult to breathe but the real suffocation is in Kashmir. Ladakh and Jammu cannot be excuse to resolve the Kashmir problem," said Lone.
Saying there is difference between grievances and aspirations, Lone proposed that while the grievances can be addressed within the system, the aspirations cannot be. "There is psychological aspect of the problem also. But we can find a solution which will be a win-win situation for all," said Lone.