Mainstream, Freedom Camp Rally Together

Mainstream, Freedom Camp Rally Together

20 February 2011
Rising Kashmir
Abid Bashir

Srinagar: In a rare show of consensus, Kashmir’s mainstream camp and the separatists have jointly opposed a K panelist's claim that divergent views prevail in J-K. Both camps are of the strong view that differences in opinions and grievances at regional level can be addressed through ‘mutual consensus’ but the final authority to resolve Kashmir lies with the majority. The development comes close on the heels of the statement of one of the interlocutors, Radha Kumar, that there exist divergent views in the three regions of the State. The ruling National Conference believes the will of the majority always rules. “There may be divergent views at regional level but as far the solution is concerned, majority’s decision would be ultimate. Grievances at the regional level is something that should be left for the government to address,” said senior NC leader Mustafa Kamal, adding that Panchayat polls are a right step to address the regional grievances. He, however, said the autonomy resolution was the majority’s decision and thus there should be no hitch in implementing the same. “Why do the interlocutors forget that the autonomy was passed with two-third majority in State Legislature? The representatives of all the three regions voted in favour of autonomy,” Kamal said. He said interlocutors cannot draw conclusions on Kashmir issue. While party spokesman Sheikh Ghulam Rasool said the issue was discussed in the party’s working committee meeting in Jammu. “We decided to wait for the final report of the Kashmir panel,” he said. The main opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party, believes that addressing grievances at the regional level is part of the final solution of Kashmir. “Ladakh and Jammu regions are not homogeneous. There are sub-regions as well. Jammu regions does not mean only Jammu district,” said party's chief spokesman Nayeem Akhter. “We will also wait for the final report of the K panel.” He said till final solution comes through, problems at the regional level need to be addressed on time. While PDF president Hakeem Yasin said division of the State is unacceptable. “Solution has to be from the majority of the people. Whatever the solution, will apply on the entire State,” he said. The CPI (M) State Secretary M Y Tarigami said the level of alienation is so deep in Kashmir that one cannot postpone the crisis. “There may be divergent opinions at the regional level but people of all regions can sit and arrive at a common ground. I believe that is very much possible,” he said, adding he does not believe in majority and minority. “What matters is a decision with both the majority and minority members on board.” On the other hand, the separatist camp, while also ruling out any sort of division of the State, sticks to the fact that majority is the ultimate authority to decide the fate of Kashmir. “We live as a unit. We choose to sustain this unity as long as we can,” said senior Hurriyat (M) leader Prof Abdul Gani Bhat. “But if someone from the interlocutors expresses their opinion, I do not deny them their right to express. Inspite of diversity, unity should exist. That will provide a guarantee to make our future bright. JK is a unit, a dispute and the solution would apply to the unit.” He said Kashmir is a contradiction and there is no denying that the aspirations of people of Ladakh, Kargil and Jammu explicitly favour India.”But we think the comprehensive solution, whatever it would be, has to be from the majority. We have to exercise our discretion,” Bhat said. The Hurriyat (G) is of the belief that problems faced by the people can be resovled once the Kashmiris are given their basic right. 'The problems will remain unless we are given right to self-determination. J-K is not a regional issue,' said Hurriyat (G) spokesman Ayaz Akbar. He said the party stands for geographical unity and opposes any move aimed at trifurcation. Echoing the same sentiment, the JKLF chief Muhammad Yasin Malik said he is against the partition of the State. “If the people of Jammu and Ladakh regions have any reservation or grudge against Kashmiri people, they should come and sit with us and sort it out. Three people (interlocutors) cannot decide the fate of nation,” he said. “The final decision has to be through a democratic verdict, with people of all three regions on board.”


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