After Mehbooba Mufti's remarks, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu hits out at those suggesting talks with Pakistan

On February 12, 2018, Mehbooba Mufti had pitched afresh for a dialogue between India and Pakistan.

After Mehbooba Mufti's remarks, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu hits out at those suggesting talks with Pakistan
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New Delhi: Days after Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti had suggested that talks with Pakistan were necessary to end bloodshed in the state, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu said on Thursday that talks with countries who train guns at India are not possible.

"It is baffling that some educated leaders are suggesting that we have to engage in a dialogue with one of our neighbours who is by all accounts fomenting trouble and encouraging cross-border terrorism... We can’t have talks with countries that have trained their guns at us," he said without naming Pakistan.

Addressing a gathering at the Indian Council of World Affairs, Naidu said India’s love for peace is more out of a concern for the welfare of humanity and not because it is weak and incapable of fighting.

"So, our diplomacy relies on building bridges across the world with dialogue as the sole sustainable method to resolve disputes. We are open to conflicting views but we are not so open to senseless violence and irrational terrorism...We have been the pioneers in the non-aligned movement. Our alignment is with the forces of peace and non-violence," he said.

The Vice President also said the present government has recognised the importance of states in its foreign policy as well as security, trade and economic relations with the neighbouring countries. 

J&K CM Mehbooba Mufti pitches for talks with Pakistan: 

On February 12, 2018, Mufti had pitched afresh for a dialogue between India and Pakistan to end the violence in the restive state.

The CM had also hit out at some media houses, which, she claimed, have created an atmosphere in which the very talk of talks was considered anti-national.

"If Farooq Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti say hold talks with Pakistan, they are dubbed anti-national. There is no alternative (to resolve the issue) except by holding talks," Mehbooba had told the state Assembly on the concluding day of the Budget Session.

"If we (the Kashmiris) don't talk about it (dialogue), who will? Not a Bihari, not a Punjabi," she had said. "Dialogue with Pakistan is necessary if we are to end bloodshed. I know I will be labelled anti-national by news anchors but that doesn't matter. The people of J&K are suffering. We have to talk because war is not an option," she had later tweeted.

Her remarks came after Jaish-e-Mohammad militants attacked an Army camp in Sunjwan area of Jammu on February 10, 2018, killing six people including five soldiers. Three militants were also killed in retaliation by the Army.

And on February 12, 2018, a CRPF constable was killed in a gunfight with terrorists in downtown Srinagar after security forces foiled militants' attempts to strike a CRPF camp. 

(With PTI inputs)

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