Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Thursday asked separatists to take a cue from the "courage" of former Hurriyat Chairman Maulana Abbas Ansari and step forward for talks as there was no alternative to dialogue in finding a lasting solution to Kashmir issue.
"I would like that the way Ansari showed courage to hold talks (with Interlocutors), others (separatists) should also come forward and hold talks (for resolution of Kashmir problem)," Omar told reporters outside on the sidelines of a function at Sher-i-Kashmir Police Training Academy at Udhampur, 65-kms from Jammu.
"If everybody says that gun is no solution to the problem. Definitely gun is no solution to the Kashmir issue. Then what is? Then talks are (solution to the issue)," Chief Minister said. "If you (Separatists) are not ready for talks, then how can we find out solution to the issue," he said and asked all those who have not given their consent (to Interlocutors) for talks till now, to also come forward for talks.
On the suspension of Ansari from Hurriyat, the Chief Minister shot back saying "I have nothing to say on this. This is their internal matter."
After months of efforts to break the ice with separatists, Centre's interlocutors on Kashmir yesterday met former Hurriyat Chairman Maulana Abbas Ansari, a move which irked the moderate faction which suspended him from the amalgam. The Chief Minister distanced himself from the decision of seven BJP legislators by their party high command for cross voting during the just concluded Legislative Council elections held saying "it is internal issue of the party".