January 2002 News

Hurriyat warming up for J&K Assembly polls: Analysts

29 January 2002
The Indian Express

Srinagar: The Hurriyat Conference''s proposal to initiate its own electoral process in Jammu and Kashmir is viewed in Srinagar by political observers as a move aimed at ensuring its relevance in the face of cold shoulders by both India and Pakistan. While the centre is not attaching any importance to the Hurriyat for its ''non-representative charter'', Pakistan stunned the apex body of separatist groups by announcing the formation of a ''national Kashmir committee'' headed by veteran Pakistan-occupied Kashmir leader Sardar Abdul Qayyum Khan, considered a moderate, they said. The committee set up by Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf, who till the other day considered Hurriyat as the representative of Kashmir’s people, was a challenge to Hurriyat as far as efforts to bring international focus on Kashmir are concerned. Hurriyat sources, however, say its proposal is aimed at sending loud and clear message to India and Pakistan that they cannot take any decision bypassing the 23-party alliance. Some observers would like to give another spin to Hurriyat proposal saying it is in fact warming up to the idea of taking part in coming Assembly elections in the state scheduled for September.


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