Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Friday asked the Central government to continue its efforts to have friendly relations with Pakistan, adding that India should make use of Jammu and Kashmir to reach markets in Central
Asia. “Mein kehti hoon ki hum history nahin badal saktey hain, magar humari geography, humari riyasat ki strategic position aise hai ki hum geography ko istemal kar ke nai tawareekh likh saktey hein, nayi history bana saktey hein (I say that we cannot change our history but we can use our geographical location to write a new history),” she said in the Legislative Council on Friday.
“Jaisey Afghanistan mein, wahan mines hain, aur ise liye America ne wahan itna zyada dakhal diya aur woh chahta tha ki main wahan rasta bana kar mines le jaonga. Magar woh dekhta reh gaya aur China ne rasta bana diya. Humarey mulk ko bhi Jammu Kashmir ka istemal karke, humarey raston ka istemal karke Central Asia pahunchney ke liye Jammu Kashmir… pehle Jammu ko, phir Kashmir ko aur phir Ladakh, gateway of India bana sakta hai central asia ke liye (Afghanistan has numerous mines and that is why the United States interfered as it wanted to build a passage for extracting the mines, but China succeeded in constructing the road while the US kept watching. Similarly, India should also use the geographic location of Jammu and Kashmir and make it its gateway to Central Asian countries),” she added.
She said the situation had improved during her father Mufti Sayeed’s first three years as CM. She said the reason for this was that the people of the state, the state government and the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government was on the same page.