Pak Invites Jammu And Kashmir Hardliners For Talks, Ignores Moderates

Pak Invites Jammu And Kashmir Hardliners For Talks, Ignores Moderates

22 March 2010
DNA
Ishfaq ul Hassan

Srinagar: Pakistan has invited several separatist groups from Kashmir to visit Islamabad for consultations on the occasion of its national day. But this time round, it has added new groups with a hardline image in the list of invitees, signaling a shift in its policy of propping up only moderates. Jamaat-i-Islami is one such group left out of the talks. But hardline Dukhtaran-e-Milat (DeM) has been invited. DeM chief Aasiya Andrabi has applied for a passport, but the government has so far denied travel documents to her. Pakistan is walking a tightrope to strike a balance between hardliners and moderates. On one side they have invited leaders from both camps but on the other they are propping up hawks to gain the foothold in Kashmir. The policy has angered some of the moderates who have smelt rat. Some of the senior moderate Hurriyat leaders, including Bilal Gani Lone and officiating chairman Abdul Gani Bhat, are planning to skip Pakistanís national day function at the countryís high commission in New Delhi on March 23. However, several moderates including Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, who are currently in Geneva, are air-dashing to Delhi to join the Pakistan Day celebrations.


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