PDP demands round table conference to resolve Kashmir issue

Srinagar, Feb 25 (PTI) Opposition People''s DemocraticParty (PDP) today said in order to resolve the Kashmir issue,a round-table conference should follow confidence buildingmeasures taken by the government.

"If Prime Minister Manmohan Singh wants to solve theKashmir issue, a round table conference should be called inwhich all stakeholders, mainstream and separatists, should beinvited," PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed said addressinga large gathering of supporters here.

Sayeed said four confidence building measures must beimplemented before the proposed round table conference isconvened by the Prime Minister.

The four measures include release of political prisonersand stone-pelters, revocation of Disturbed Areas Act,curtailment of special powers given to the Army and reductionof the armed forces from civilian areas.

The PDP founder lashed out at the Omar Abdullah-led stategovernment for allegedly arresting young boys on the pretextthat "something will happen in June".

"Today, my youth are being arrested because governmentthinks something will happen in June, but you can only arresta person, you cannot keep his ideas captive," he said.

"During my tenure, not a single political activistremained in jail," the former chief minister said, flaying thestate government for arresting Mohammad Ashraf Sehrai and HighCourt Bar Association president Mian Abdul Qayoom.

Without naming separatists, Sayeed said the two sideshave unanimity only on the three basic issues of prisonerrelease, revocation of AFSPA and reduction of armed forces.

Reiterating his demand for compensation to Jammu andKashmir due to loss of water resources on account of the IndusWater Treaty between India and Pakistan, Sayeed assured thefarmers of the neighbouring country that his party does notaim to change the course of the rivers flowing into theirterritory.

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