Jammu, Dec 7 (UNI) Former union minister and National Conference (NC) president Omar Abdullah said autonomy was the ''only viable solution'' to the decades old Kashmir issue.
Addressing public meetings in Poonch (Haveli) constituency yesterday, where by-election are scheduled to be held on December 12, Mr Abdullah claimed the roadmap prepared by the NC for resolution of the Kashmir imbroglio was perfect in all respects.
Campaigning for his party candidate at Poonch and Bandi Chechiyan, he recalled how the NC was dubbed as a traitor when it passed autonomy resolution in the state legislative assembly.
''However, now all those people, who were opposing the resolution tooth and nail, have realised that there can be no other possible solution to end decades old issue,'' Mr Abdullah said, adding that ''Kashmir was not only a bone of contention between India and Pakistan but it has proved to be one of the major causes for instability in South Asia.'' ''People who forced the youth to take up guns and built castles in air by spreading bloodshed and violence are now talking about autonomy as the only roadmap for resolution of the issue,'' the NC president asserted.
''We stand by our commitment and we stand by our roadmap,'' Mr Abdullah further said, terming it as a major achievement of his party.
The autonomy and freedom that comes with it, the NC leader said, would go a long-way in soothing the hurt feelings of the people, who have been exposed to a great deal of hardship during the last 50 years.
He said the NC will continue its efforts and go ahead in negotiating on autonomy, even with the forces which have rejected it in the legislative assembly previously.