Former UJC Chief Pins Hope On Sonia For Resolving Kashmir Issue
17 May 2004
News Network International
Islamabad: Peace activist Tanveer ul Islam observed that Congress and BJP had almost similar stand with regard to Kashmir but nevertheless there was hope that the new Indian government would work for real peace in the region. 'It is of little significance for us that who comes to power in India because both the major parties have had almost similar stance vis-a-vis Kashmir,' said Tanveer ul Islam, former chairman of United Jihad Council. However, he said, since the Congress claimed itself to be a secular party and had some Kashmiris in its senior ranks one hoped that repression in Kashmir might witness a decline after its coming to power. 'The most important thing for the Kashmiris is that their plight and Indian atrocities should instantly come to end followed by a just settlement of the lingering Kashmir problem to ensure durable peace in the region,' he said in an informal chat with Greater Kashmir. 'The people of Kashmir are struggling for the very thing.' Tanveer now runs Sawera Foundation, a Muzaffarabad based non-governmental organization working in the fields of relief, rehabilitation and education of Kashmiri refugees and affectees along the Line of Control. He pointed out that Congress had supported Vajpayee's peace initiatives and it must carry forward the process because it was in India's own interests. He was of the view that Sonia Ghandi's election as Prime Minister would ease the task of those powers, which were pressing both India and Pakistan to work for the lasting peace in this region. He reminded the new Indian leadership as well as the international community that peace in the region hinged on the peaceful settlement of Kashmir issue in accordance with the wishes of the Kashmiri people. 'Let me make it clear to all concerned that all the routes to peace pass through Kashmir.'