Updated: August 10, 2016 5:23:43 pm
Congress veteran Mani Shankar Aiyar on Wednesday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government to stop blaming Pakistan for Kashmir unrest as it is India’s problem and advised the ruling dispensation to initiate a parallel dialogue with both Pakistan and the separatist leaders.
“Kashmir is our problem, we cannot keep saying Pakistan is causing it. They will keep doing what they are doing with regard to Kashmir. The talks should continue between both the countries. And also with all leaders be it Hurriyat or Mufti ji or separatist leadership,” Aiyar told ANI.
“There is a need to understand that it is not enough to just have Kashmir, we have to ensure Kashmiris are ours. We will have to initiate dialogue process with the people of Kashmir so that not just Kashmir but Kashmiris are ours,” he added.
“If he does not talk to Pakistan or does not speak with disgruntled in Kashmir, whom will he talk to? The ‘gau rakshaks’,” he added sarcastically.
The Congress veteran also criticised Prime Minister Modi over his assertion that his government would take Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s path on Kashmir.
“But I believe that he should not completely follow Vajpayee ji’s path. What Narasimha Rao has said in 1995 that as far as autonomy is concerned sky is the limit. Modi ji should think about that also. The composite dialogue which I.K. Gujral had started 1997; Modi ji should take that also into consideration. What Dr Manmohan Singh has done in his tenure even that Modi ji should keep in mind,” he added
Prime Minister Modi had earlier reached out to the people of Kashmir and indicated his willingness to hold dialogue under the framework of the ‘insaniyat (humanity), jamhuriyat (democracy) and kashmiriyat’.
He said that when Vajpayee was the prime minister, he had adopted the path of ‘insaniyat, jamhuriyat and kashmiriyat’ and the present government walks the same road.
The Prime Minister, who was speaking at a public meeting at Bhabra in Madhya Pradesh, the birthplace of freedom fighter Chander Shekhar Azad, yesterday appealed to the people to maintain peace and harmony in Kashmir.
The Prime Minister said Mehbooba Mufti-led Jammu and Kashmir Government and the Centre are working together to solve the state’s difficulties, but some people, who are unable to digest it, are clinging onto the path to destruction.
He said that his government wants to take Kashmir to new heights of development, empower its panchayats and give job opportunities to its youth.
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