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Govt should prevent redrawing of boundaries in J&K: Sinha

Government should shun the "policy of appeasement" in Kashmir and at all cost prevent boundaries from being redrawn there, according to former Jammu and Kashmir Governor SK Sinha.



New Delhi: Government should shun the "policy of appeasement" in Kashmir and at all cost prevent boundaries from being redrawn there, according to former Jammu and Kashmir Governor SK Sinha.

The "other danger" India faces as regards to Kashmir is from "following a policy of subservience to the US" at a time when Pakistan was "exploiting its indispensability" to America for its exit strategy in Afghanistan, according to him.

"It (Pakistan) appears to have persuaded the US that unless the Kashmir problem is resolved to its satisfaction, it is not in a position to provide full support for the US war on terror," Sinha said.

Kashmir is "not the disease but a symptom" in the Indo-Pak relations and India must at all costs prevent boundaries being redrawn there, said Sinha.

"I am often asked as to what should be the solution for the Kashmir problem. My firm answer is that we must shun the policy of appeasement. The more we concede, the more we whet appetite," he said, noting that Article 370 has already been provided to Kashmir which give it more political and economic autonomy than any other state in the country.

In his foreword to a Marathi book "Mission Kashmir" written by journalist Ravindra Dani, he said "India must at all costs prevent boundaries being redrawn in Kashmir. She has successfully done so for the past 60 years on the basis of our military strength and must continue to do so in future".

The book will be released this week at a function in Nagpur for which RSS chief Mohanrao Bhagwat and BJP president Nitin Gadkari have been invited.

Sinha insisted that the "ultimate solution" of the Kashmir problem can be a South Asian Economic Union on the lines of the European Union.

"That would render national boundaries and boundaries within Kashmir irrelevant... At present that hope appears utopian and unrealisable in the lifetime of the present generation," he said.

Sinha recalled his "long personal association" with the Kashmir issue dating back to October 27, 1947, when the first contingent of the Indian army flew into the state to rescue the people from the brutal and barbarous invasion launched by Pakistan.

Regretting that it was surprising that India often seem to be "defensive and apologetic" about its stand on Kashmir, he said "India must be prepared to face Pakistan`s strategies of thousand wars, thousand cuts and now blackmail on the basis of support from the US".

He noted that the EU Parliament`s fact finding mission in 2007 to both sides of Kashmir praised the functioning of democracy in Indian-administered Kashmir and criticised its absence in Pakistan-administered territory.

The report of the mission was endorsed almost unanimously by the EU Parliament despite Pakistan`s desperate effort to get it scuttled, he said.

PTI

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