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Kashmiri separatists protest Musharaf remarks

Pak President, in an interview on Monday, is reported to have disfavoured independence for J&K, reports Rashid Ahmad.

india Updated: Dec 05, 2006 22:18 IST
Rashid Ahmad
Rashid Ahmad

Kashmiri separatist politicians have taken a serious umbrage of Pakistan President General Parvez Musharaf's rejection of "independence" for Jammu and Kashmir as a solution to the issue of Kashmir. The Democratic Freedom Party chief Shabir Ahmad Shah has described the Pak President's assertions as the "viewpoint of one of the three parties to the dispute". The JKLF leader Javaid Mir termed it as "unacceptable". Syed Ali Geelani chairman of hard-line faction of Hurriyat Conference sounded even harsher saying "Pak president has no right to accept or reject things on behalf of Kashmiri people".

General Parvez Musharaf, in an interview on Monday, is reported to have disfavoured "independence" for Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan President is also reported to have asserted that his country was ready to give up claim on Kashmir if government of India agreed to "demilitarisation and self governance with joint supervision (by India and Pakistan) as solution to the issue of Kashmir."

"We have summoned the emergency session of our Majlis-e-Shoora (central advisory committee) on Thursday. It is very serious issue. We will discuss the issue in our Shoora and come up with proper response," Malik Fayaz Noor, a spokesperson of Syed Ali Geelani said. He said that Pak President has no right to accept or reject things on behalf of Kashmiris. "It (Musharaf's statement) is complete negation of Pakistan's historical stand on Kashmir. It is a clear U-turn. It is in no way acceptable to us, and we will come up with a strong response to it on Thursday," he said.

Shabir Ahmad Shah said that it could be the "viewpoint" or "proposal" of Pakistan President, not necessarily acceptable to the people of Kashmir. "Pak President has given many a proposals on Kashmir. It can be just one among them. But it is ultimately, the people of Kashmir who have to decided about their future," Shah told the Hindustan Times. Shah said that it was not in the interests of Kashmiri people to close down options. "Independence, UN resolutions are the options. Let us keep all the options open, hold a meaning dialogue and acceptable whatever emerges through consensus," he said.

Javaid Mir, the chairman of a faction of pro independence JKLF said that the "independence" was the slogan of the people of Kashmir. "They (people) are the final authority of their destination. Nobody else is authorised to speak or decide on their behalf," Mir said. "When we started our movement (militancy) in 1988, then Pakistan President General Zia-ul-Haque supported the idea of independent Kashmir. General Musharaf is reversing the policy of his predecessors," he said.

Mirwaiz-led Hurriyat Conference however is the only hope for Pak President in Kashmir. The Hurriyat amalgam put all its weight behind General Parvez Musharaf's self-rule proposal on November 30, and said that it could be the only viable solution for the issue of Kashmir.

First Published: Dec 05, 2006 22:18 IST