National Conference working president Omar Abdullah today pitched for resumption of dialogue between India and Pakistan, saying “if India and China can talk, why can’t New Delhi and Islamabad?”
The former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister said that both India and Pakistan will have to make a new beginning to recreate mutual trust and understanding, imperative for talks. He hailed India and China for agreeing to “expeditious disengagement” of border personnel at Dokalam.
“There has been no return of firearm between India and China despite over two-month-long standoff in Dokhlam. But the borders with Pakistan are roaring with shells, making residents of the forward areas vulnerable,” he said addressing a rally at Mendhar near the Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district.
Pitching for creating a conducive atmosphere to restart Indo-Pak dialogue to herald a new era of good neighbourly relations, he said that wars have benefitted none, and it is only peace that can lead the neighbourly countries to peace, progress and development.
Abdullah, who is on a five-day tour of Poonch-Rajouri belt since yesterday, invoked former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and said his golden words that friends can be changed but not the neighbours remains relevant in the sub-continent, which need to shed the baggage of the past and start a new era of trust, understanding and eventually friendship.
The NC is consistent in its stand on thaw in the Indo-Pak relations, primarily for welfare and well-being of the border dwellers and overall peace in the region, as Jammu and Kashmir has been a major sufferer of hostilities, he said.
During his 45-minute address, Omar also spoke on the issues of attempts to tinker with Article 35A, PDP-BJP tie-up, alleged failure of the coalition dispensation on all fronts, growing unemployment and “developmental paralysis” across the state.