Separatists welcome resumption of talks
17 September 2006
The Daily Excelsior
Srinagar: Welcoming the resumption of talks between India and Pakistan, separatist leaders today said they should be 'result oriented' and should involve the people of the State so as to resolve the Kashmir issue. 'We welcome the resumption of dialogue between India and Pakistan. Talks should be result-oriented and carried forward seriously and sincerely,' chairman of J and K Liberation Front Mohammad Yaseen Malik said. He said both countries should involve people of the State in the talks to resolve Kashmir issue as it was 'not a boundary dispute between the two countries but involves future of people of the State.' India and Pakistan decided to resume their dialogue after a one-to-one meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf on the sidelines of NAM summit in Havana yesterday. The talks were stalled following the July 11 serial blasts in Mumbai which claimed nearly 200 lives. Describing the resumption of dialogue between the two countries as a welcome step, president of J&K Democratic Freedom Party Shabir Ahmad Shah said 'it meets our desire as talks was the only way to resolve the issue.' 'We are happy that New Delhi and Islamabad utilized the golden opportunity that came their way and agreed to resume the talks,' he said. Shah said talks should be carried forward 'seriously and sincerely to resolve the Kashmir issue which was the mother of all problems between the two countries.' 'Talks should be result-oriented and not time consuming affair,' Shah said adding New Delhi should show flexibility in its stand on Kashmir. 'Government should take concrete steps to change the situation for better in Jammu and Kashmir so that people feel that it (New Delhi) is serious and sincere in resolving Kashmir issue,' he said. However, hardline faction of Hurriyat led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani maintained that talks between India and Pakistan would lead 'nowhere unless New Delhi accept Kashmir as a disputed issue.' 'Talks between India and Pakistan have been going on for the last 58 years at different levels but failed to yield results because of rigid and unrealistic attitude of India,' a spokesman of the Hurriyat said when asked about the resumption of talks between the two countries. He said the resumption of dialogue 'was nothing but a time consuming affair as India has not budged an inch from its stand on Kashmir so far.' However, he said, 'we are not against talks but the talks should be result-oriented and held in a congenial atmosphere.'