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Home / Cities / Taliban-Afgan peace talks: India’s muscle-flexing only for Kashmir, say Valley politicos

Taliban-Afgan peace talks: India’s muscle-flexing only for Kashmir, say Valley politicos

cities Updated: Sep 13, 2020, 20:01 IST
Ashiq Hussain
Ashiq Hussain
Hindustan Times, Srinagar

The regional political parties in Jammu and Kashmir on Sunday criticised the Indian government for warming up to the Taliban-Afghan government talks in Doha while employing harsh measures in Kashmir.

People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and People’s Conference leaders asked why the muscle-flexing was only for Kashmir.

“No issues joining a meeting with Taliban but Mehbooba Mufti must be in jail and nothing but the gun must speak to teenaged Kashmiri youth,” tweeted senior PDP leader Naeem Akhtar while sharing the news of Delhi’s “shift” towards the intra-Afghanistan negotiations.

On Saturday, Union external affairs minister S Jaishankar joined the inaugural session of the intra-Afghan negotiations in Doha, Qatar, via videoconference and reiterated India’s support for an Afghan-led, Afghan-owned and Afghan-controlled peace process.

Representatives of the Afghan government and Taliban will come face-to-face for the first time on Monday for peace talks in Qatar’s capital for a negotiated settlement after nearly two decades of war.

“Spot on. The bravado is only for Kashmiris. The might is only for Kashmiris. Wonder where the muscle-flexing disappears when it comes to species like the Taliban or for that matter the PLA,” responded People’s Conference president Sajad Lone to Akhtar’s tweet.

Kashmir has been in the throes of militancy since 1989 over demands of ‘Aazadi’. Though the violence has come down considerably, every year hundreds, majority of them being local and foreign militants, die in gunfights with the security forces.

Akhtar and Lone, both former ministers in PDP-BJP government, were among nearly all of Kashmir’s mainstream political leaders who were detained for months when the central government effectively nullified Article 370 of the Constitution on August 5, 2019, which accorded special status to the region, and bifurcated the state into two union territories – Jammu and Kashmir with a legislature and Ladakh without one.

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