Hurriyat's Pak visit under consideration
24 February 2001
The Indian Express
New Delhi: Two days after announcing ceasefire extension, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee today said the question of allowing a Hurriyat team to visit Pakistan "is under consideration" and declared the Centre's readiness to hold talks with all those in Jammu and Kashmir wanting to enter into a dialogue. "Ye prashna vicharadhin hai (the question is under consideration)," he said when asked about the government's stand on giving permission to a five-member Hurriyat team to go to Pakistan. Hurriyat has said that it wanted to send a team to Pakistan to facilitate the peace process. Replying to another question on the Centre's intention to hold talks with Kashmiri leaders, Vajpayee said "Jo baat karna chahenge, un sabse baat karenge (we will talk to anyone who is willing to talk)". The Prime Minister was talking to reporters here after releasing a new three-volume edition of the memoirs of Congress stalwart late D P Mishra, father of Prime Minister's Principal Secretary Brajesh Mishra. Vajpayee, however, parried a question when asked to elaborate with whom the government was willing to enter into into parleys. While announcing the decision to extend the J&K ceasefire by another three months in Parliament on Thursday last, Vajpayee had voiced Centre's readiness to initiate talks with various militant groups which abjure violence.