Jethmalani backs Kashmir interlocutors over Pak

Last Updated: Tuesday, October 26, 2010 - 15:30

New Delhi: Taking a different line from Bharatiya Janata Party`s (BJP), Rajya Sabha member Ram Jethmalani Tuesday said it was "childish and churlish" to accuse the government`s interlocutors of internationalising the Jammu and Kashmir dispute simply by suggesting that Pakistan should be involved in talks over the disputed state.

"It is childish and churlish to attack them for internationalising the issue. Prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee by his confabulations with (then) president Pervez Musharraf and recently Foreign Minister SM Krishna confabulating with his counterpart (Shah Mahmood) Qureshi were exactly doing that," Jethmalani said.

The BJP has criticised Dileep Padgaonkar, head of a three-member team of interlocutors, for saying that there was a need to involve Pakistan in any dialogue on Kashmir, India`s only Muslim-majority state where separatsit violence has left thousands dead since 1989.

Jethmalani said that Padgaonkar and his team`s task of finding a "peaceful and lasting solution" to the Kashmir problem is "almost superhuman". He said he prayed for their success despite having "serious misgivings" with their mission.

"Even if they achieve partial result, the nation would owe them a debt of gratitude. Neither by acts nor by words we should add to their difficulties," he said.

The other interlocutors are academic Radha Kumar and information commissioner MM Ansari. The team is visiting Jammu and Kashmir meeting a cross section of the people.


First Published: Tuesday, October 26, 2010 - 15:30

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