UPA lying about 'economic blockade': Farooq

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Jammu, Aug 20: Refuting claims of the Union Government and the Ministry of Defence that there was no ''economic blockade'' to Kashmir, the National Conference patron and former chief minister Farooq Abdullah today said the Central Government was lying as ''economic blockade'' forced Kashmiris to march towards Muzaffarabad.

''Don't tell me that there was no ''economic blockade'', there was ''blockade,'' said Dr Abdullah while talking to the reporters here this morning and asserted, ''I know Government of India and I worked with Government of India.'' ''The ''blockade'' forced Kashmiris to march towards Muzaffarabad as there was no road open. Had it been a Chinese border touching the Valley, then also they (Kashmiris) would had tried to proceed towards China for trade,'' the National Conference patron added.

Dr Abdullah claimed that had there been no ''economic blockade'', there was no fun of deploying Army on the highway as Army personnel are supposed to guard borders but not the national highways.

''Jammu and Kashmir is not a separate state and I think that maintaining brotherhood, integrity and communal harmony will solve the Amarnath controversy,'' Dr Abdullah said and maintained, ''our gateway to Kashmir is Lakhanpur (Jammu-Punjab border) and there will be no separate regions.'' ''Dialogue and flexible attitude bring out solutions to many problems and I wish that the talks between the Sangharsh Samiti and the Governor are going to be fruitful,'' he said.

However, reiterating his party's demand, the former Chief Minister said, 'autonomy is the solution'.


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