Some optimism in the air | india | Hindustan Times
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Some optimism in the air

No stone throwing was reported from any part of Kashmir on Tuesday. A police press release early in the morning said the night was peaceful.

india Updated: Sep 21, 2010 23:14 IST
Ashiq Hussain

No stone throwing was reported from any part of Kashmir on Tuesday. A police press release early in the morning said the night was peaceful.

Can one put this down to Monday’s visit of the all-party delegation and meetings with separatist leaders, after all the initial cynicism?

Even Facebook posts and tweets on social networking sites spelled optimism.

“Earlier when there were reports that they (the delegation) will be meeting only mainstream politicians, the visit seemed a formality. But when the TV channels showed the delegation visiting the separatists, expectations were roused,” said Mohammad Salim (30).

For 22-year-old Rakib Wani, a Kashmir University student, it was a positive sign by politicians. “But with this, the responsibility of the Indian parliamentarians has also increased. Now they have heard the aspirations of the people. They met separatists as well as the common people. Now if they shy away from the efforts to solve the Kashmir issue, it will further shatter the credibility of Indian politicians as well as institutions in the eyes of the common people,” Wani said.

“It was like India speaking to the people of Kashmir, and if it yields nothing, there will be hopelessness, which can have very dangerous consequences,” he said.

Umar Dar, a villager from the northern district of Baramulla, said that the visit of parliamentarians to the residences of separatists had established the legitimacy of separatists. “It means India now acknowledges that separatists represent people in Kashmir and that will help a lot in moving ahead in the solution of the issue,” Dar said.

A 41-year-old bank manager, however, is not convinced. “I don’t think it will yield anything. India has the problem of leadership crisis. Nobody among the current set of politicians can take any bold step vis-a-vis Kashmir. And there is no hope of having a consensus,” he said wishing not to be named.