New Delhi, Aug 15 : Prime Minister Dr.Manmohan Singh on Friday warned that his government's response would be hard if the violence continued in Jammu and Kashmir.
Speaking on the occasion of India's 62nd Independence Day from the ramparts of the historic Red Fort, Dr. Singh said: "Our doors are always open and will continue to be open for anyone interested in dialogue. I invite everyone to join us to discuss the problems of the state of Jammu and Kashmir so that its people can lead a life of peace and dignity. If violence continues, then our response too will be hard."
Dr. Singh maintained that terrorists have never been the friends of the people of Kashmir, adding that "as long as they continue their terrorist attacks, our Armed Forces will be alert and give them a fitting response."
While urging everyone in the State to come forward for a dialogue, Dr. Singh said: "It is our humanitarian obligation that we assist the State in all possible ways so that the people there can live in peace and harmony."
"In this conflict, common citizens may also be affected at times. I have said before and I am repeating once again, that there is no issue that cannot be resolved through a process of discussion and dialogue," he further added.
Dr. Singh said the country has managed to face extremism successfully through a democratic process. However, it is imperative that a democratic Government should be able to differentiate between the genuine problems of people and the designs of terrorists.
Describing the recent incidents in the State, especially those related to the Amarnath Shrine land transfer row as a cause for concern, Dr. Singh said: "In this hour of crisis, divisive politics will lead us nowhere. I appeal to all political parties to keep the long term interests of Jammu and Kashmir in view and come together to find a permanent solution to the problems of the State."