New separatist amalgam floated to replace Hurriyat in Kashmir
1 November 2002
The Daily Excelsior
Srinagar: In a move to challenge Jammu and Kashmir’s main apex body of separatist groups, a cluster of political, militant and non- governmental organisations are planning to come together and form a new amalgam. Accusing Hurriyat Conference of failing to represent aspirations of Kashmiri people, Nissar Ahmad Sabzawari, chairman of the Muawan Foundation, a constituent of the yet to be named grouping, told reporters here that 'we are waiting for some of the militant outfits to come out in the open in the next three-four days.' 'Hurriyat Conference has failed to represent the aspirations of the Kashmiri people when they decided not to run an anti-election campaign in the just-concluded polls,' he said. He said several political and militant outfits have decided to join the new amalgam which would be named very soon. Jaish-e-Mohammad and Al-Jehad will be joining the amalgam and its leaders presented before the media very soon, Sabzawari said. On the promise of Chief Minister-designate Mufti Mohammad Sayeed to merge the special operations group with regular police force and not to implement POTA, Sabzawari said if acted upon, it will be welcome. But all these decisions do not constitute a solution to the Kashmir problem which has to be resolved through a dialogue between India, Pakistan and Kashmiris, he said. Asked how would the Kashmir issue be resolved with no sign of a dialogue between Delhi and Islamabad, he said both the sides have to climb down a bit to reach a lasting settlement. Asked about the timing of launching the amalgam, Sabzawari said 'we did not want to launch the organisation on the eve of elections.' 'We are not interested in any elections as they have never produced and will never produce a solution to the basic issue of Kashmir,' he said. He said during his discussions with leaders of other outfits he tried impress on them that the role of the gun was over and now was the time for talks. 'The gun has done its job. The whole world knows that there is problem called Kashmir which needs to be resolved,' Sabzawari said. Though Sabzawari named some of the lesser known outfits as constituents of the amalgam, he said a detailed list would be released after all the members decided on the name of the conglomerate.