June 1998 News

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Pakistan will have to Vacate PoK: Farooq

7th June 1998
Hindustan Times

SRINAGAR: "Pakistan will have to vacate the part of Kashmir it has so far held illegally," said Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah, while declaring that India will not wage a war against its neighbour as it has never ever done so in the past.

Reacting to Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's remarks on Kashmir in Islamabad, the Chief Minister said amid thunderous applause, "Pakistan Prime Minister says India must think of leaving Kashmir but I want to tell him that soon they will have to part with the Pakistan occupied Kashmir."

The Chief Minister was speaking at the passing out parade of the 136th Battalion of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) at Humhama near here this morning. The recruits were once militants and have since shunned the path of militancy and returned to the mainstream.

Taking a dig at P-5 nations, the Chief Minister said, "These countries have accumulated huge arsenal of dreaded weaponry and want us to bow before their wishes. They must realise that we are the masters of our own destiny and do what is good in our national interest". Some powers scared of India's defence capabilities are adopting pressure tactics, he said. Stating that India always stood for peace and never waged war against any country, he remarked, "If challenged, it will retaliate with all its might. Our love for peace should not be construed as our weakness," he added.

Exhorting the CRPF recruits to fight valiantly the enemy pushed into the Valley from across the border, the Chief Minister hoped they will secure them for exemplary punishment as these militants have inflicted many miseries and atrocities on the innocent people of the State. While tackling militancy, the security personnel should ensure that the civilians were not harmed, he said.

Complimenting the misguided youth for shunning the path of violence, the Chief Minister said, after joining the CRPF they have to help save their brethren from the militants who have no regard for life. While earlier they indulged in destruction, now they have to work for peace and reconstruction. He called upon the recruits to abide by the oath they had taken today for loyalty to the country.


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