J&K govt urges Centre for unconditional talks
21 November 2002
The Hindustan Times
Jammu: The Jammu and Kashmir government on Thursday urged the Centre to initiate an unconditional and ''result-oriented'' dialogue with MLAs and other sections of the society to achieve durable peace in the state and expressed oppostion to the use of POTA to curb militancy. Outlining the policies of the newly-elected PDP-Congress coalition government led by Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, Governor GC Saxena told a joint session of the Legislature here, ''a just and durable peace can be achieved in the state in good measure if the Central government initiates result-oriented dialogue, without any pre-conditions, with the members of Legislature and other segments of public opinion in three regions of the state.'' The government, he said, appreciated the initiatives taken from time to time by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee ''through dialogue and moral persuasion and it is the considered opinion of the government that historical opportunity is knocking at our doors.'' To achieve this goal, it is essential to make a beginning by giving a healing touch to the situation and by reaching to out to those who feel alienated, the governor said. As a step in this direction, the government, he said, has decided to review the cases of all political detenus who may have been detained without trial and those who were held on non-specific charges or those not charged with serious offences. The governor said that the government was of the view that existing laws are adequate to deal with militancy and there was no need to resort to POTA.