PDP calls for accelerating peace process with Pakistan
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Last Updated: Friday, January 10, 2014, 17:31
  
Srinagar: Opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Friday advocated peace along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir saying if India has to emerge as a 'great nation' it has to have amiable relations with Pakistan and other neighbouring countries.

"I have been saying that it is everyone's wish to see peace here. People want that the country should have a good friendship with neighbouring Pakistan and nothing would come out of a war.

"Whoever forms the government at the Centre- be it a single party or a coalition - has to keep in mind that if India has to emerge as a great country, it has to have good relations with its neighbours," PDP patron and former Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed told reporters here.

Terming as "unfortunate" the video which emerged mysteriously on social media and TV channels purportedly showing a person carrying a head with suggestions that it was that of Lance Naik Hemraj, who was beheaded by Pakistan Army regulars on the LoC a year ago, Sayeed said such incidents will not affect the general course of peace process.

"These type of incidents are unfortunate but will not affect the general course of peace. I was concerned about skirmishes on Line of Control (LoC) and that situation should not turn such that we are pushed backwards," the PDP chief said.

Sayeed said people of Jammu and Kashmir supported the positive change in that environment of confrontation at the LoC.

"We face most of the brunt of this confrontation and that is why our voice had an impact. Our voice is that war is no solution. There has been no bigger attack on the country than the Parliament attack. But the situation after that changed when the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee visited the state to start a peace process," Sayeed said.

Jammu and Kashmir has to be made a bridge of friendship between India and Pakistan and not a bone of contention, the PDP patron said, adding that people of the state want peace with dignity and the resolution of Kashmir issue.

"We want the resolution of Kashmir issue and it cannot be avoided. To create an atmosphere for that, I have an agenda. If we come to power, we will pursue that agenda," he said.

Pitching for revocation of Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), Sayeed said, "It is unfortunate that even after 60 years of independence and being a part of democratic India, we still have discussions on AFSPA and presence of military here.

"Why is it so? You have to have confidence in our people. I have been saying that there is a trust deficit... It is not good for the image of our country. People outside India say there is a huge presence of army here and then there is AFSPA as well. They ask why is it necessary to have AFSPA? This does not give a good name to democratic India," he said.

PTI

First Published: Friday, January 10, 2014, 17:31


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