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Show compassion to disgruntled youth: Mehbooba urges PM

Written by: Staff

Sangrama, Baramulla, Apr 13 (UNI) Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chief Mehbooba Mufti today urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to show compassion to the disgruntled youth who had crossed over to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) for arms training and want to return and join the mainstream as their ''hearts and minds'' have changed.

''We appeal to the Prime Minister to take a compassionate view about the youth who had gone to PoK for arms training and are now eagerly waiting to return and live a peaceful life as their hearts and minds have changed,'' she told an election meeting here.

Ms Mufti said a chance must be given to the disgruntled youth who want to join their famlies and work for the welfare of the society and the state as well.

She expressed optimism about the progress made in the ongoing dialogue process and hoped that all separatist groups would participate in the Prime Minister's second round-table conference on Kashmir scheduled to be held in the last week of May.

The PDP president appealed to Dr Singh to make all-out efforts in ensuring participation of all those separatist leaders in the round- table conference to present their viewpoint.

The ongoing peace process was deep-rooted and irreversible, she said, adding the people were the fountain-head of power and their verdict, desires and urges could not be undermined any longer.

She also detailed the broad contours of the self-rule concept and expressed the hope that it would be taken up in the second round-table conference so that the external and internal dimensions of the Kashmir issue were thoroughly discussed.

Highlighting the achievements of the coalition government, she enumerated the steps taken for equitable and balanced development of all the three regions of the state.

Ms Mufti described the three-and-a-half-year rule of the coalition government much better and balanced than the National Conference regime of 27 years.

''The people should judge our scorebook of performance and cooperate with us to achieve dignified and long-lasting peace and economic self-reliance,'' she said while urging them to vote in favour of her party candidates.

In his speech, Deputy Chief Minister Muzaffar Hussain Baig said the people of the state have been yearning for peace for years now.

The PDP was determind to respect the people's aspirations, he said and reiterated his party's stand to continue with its mission of transparency and people-friendly policies.

Mr Baig appealed to the people not to be misled by the nefarious designs of vested interests and urged them to cooperate with the PDP in acheiving the goal of economic self-sufficiency besides dignified and long-lasting peace in the region.


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