India, Pak Should Fight Terrorism Together: Farooq

29 November 2008
The Times of India


Jammu: At a time when there was mounting evidence that the attack on Mumbai was launched from Pakistani soil, former J&K CM Farooq Abdullah on Saturday sprang in defence of Pakistan, ruling out Islamabad's complicity. Instead, he suggested the two countries come together to fight terrorism. The comments come a day ahead of the third round of state elections and are seen as a desperate bid to salvage the fragile Indo-Pak peace process which has come under strain following the attack. The valley-based parties PDP and Farooq's NC are fighting elections on the promise of solving Kashmir problem through a sustained dialogue between the two countries. Farooq said the two countries are suffering at the hands of terrorism and that it's no time resort to blame game. 'Instead of blaming each other, we should come together to fight terror across the world,' he said. Farooq said the groups that don't want India and Pakistan to come closer executed the attack. 'There would be some short term effect on the peace process but it'll sustain,' he hoped. While advocating a joint anti-terror mechanism, he blamed Pakistan for creating groups like LeT. 'But they're now helpless as these groups have gone out of control,' he said. 'Pakistan created the tiger and now can't ride it. Farooq's son and NC chief Omar Abdullah refused to comment on his dad's clean chit to Pakistan. 'Whatever he has said has to be looked at in context and if that isn't clear then you should speak to him,' he said. He said state complicity couldn't be ruled out, as the terrorists were well briefed and trained. 'There is more to the attack than meets the eye,' he said. He said it was too early to point fingers, but added that there are many Pakistani entities at work which are hostile to India. 'What element is playing what role can't be said,' he said. Omar said Pakistan has to offer a transparent cooperation. 'It's disappointing that Pakistan has stepped back on sending the ISI chief to assist the investigations,' he said. 'If Pakistan doesn't help then you can't blame people for pointing fingers at them.'