India can strengthen peace in the sub-continent: PDP

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Jammu, Nov 6 (UNI) Terming the developments in Pakistan as a cause of concern, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today said New Delhi can send a positive message across the border by strengthening the ''forces of peace'' in the sub-continent.

The former chief minister, while addressing a public rally at bordering R S Pura sector, said without diluting its agreed national policy of not interfering in the internal affairs of the neighboring countries, India could seize the situation by taking ''certain politically courageous steps'' towards the peaceful and ultimate settlement of the Kashmir issue.

''Facilitating the political forces to take full control of the state's affairs by strengthening and consolidating the democratic and the civil society institutions would have a visible impact on the fast-changing situation in the state,'' he said.

Such steps, Mr Sayeed said, would also provide a space to the forces of peace across the borders, who have been piloting peaceful and amicable settlement of the Kashmir issue.

He said the emerging situation in Pakistan, instead of decelerating the peace efforts, might provide an opportunity to New Delhi to accelerate, both reconciliation and resolution process within the state in the larger interest of the region's peace and stability.

The PDP patron said such measures should also send a signal to those who had taken up the gun in their belief to resolve a political problem through it.

''They must be made to realise that the gun has lost its impact and ability to achieve political objectives and dialogue is the only recourse,'' he said, adding that all this needs a political will and the trust in the people of Jammu and Kashmir to consolidate the peace process.

He said the successful ceasefire along the borders and the Line of Control (LoC) holding for the past couple of years has heightened the hopes of peace among the people and the two countries should extend this bonhomie to the plains as well.

''With Afghanistan already on the boil, destabilisation and worsening of the security situation in Pakistan would only breed new alarming dangers in the region,'' he said and added that a discreet approach to the situation by New Delhi would not only signal India's positive support for Pakistan's territorial integrity but would also send to the people of neighboring country a message of goodwill.

UNI

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