Batting strongly for autonomy in Jammu and Kashmir, National Conference chief Omar Abdullah on Thursday said that there had been a marked shift in recent days in the stated positions of Indian and Pakistan on the Kashmir issue.
"Kashmir acceded to India and it never merged with it," Abdullah said dismissing the perception that autonomy would lead to secession of the state.
Speaking at a conference on 'Autonomy vs self rule in Kashmir', he expressed surprise at External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee's remarks that there would be some adjustments in Arunachal Pradesh's boundary with China, terming it "a huge departure" from the government's earlier stand.
"The statement by the minister has taken me by surprise ...there is a huge departure from the government's earlier position," Abdullah said, referring to Jammu and Kashmir which is also affected by India's boundary dispute with China.
Mukherjee had told the Lok Sabha on Wednesday that there would be "some adjustments" of Arunachal Pradesh's boundary with China.
Abdullah conceded that human rights abuses were committed when the National Conference-led government was in power in the state and said the current government must implement its "healing touch" policy effectively.
"What we did, we paid the price for that. Our human rights record was not good. And as a result, we faced the drubbing in the last elections," he said.