BJP can’t afford to turn ‘soft’ on terror before LS polls, Hurriyat leader writes in Pak daily
Islamabad, Sept 30: All Parties Hurriyat Conference leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq on Sunday, September 30, penned a piece for Pakistani daily Dawn in which he said India and Pakistan will not talk and the baggage of history continued to weigh heavy on both countries and the status quo remained.
The 45-year-old leader said while India wanted to talk "terror", Pakistan wanted to talk "Kashmir" and the people of Kashmir continued to pay it dearly. He said the people of the two South Asian neighbours would also pay for what he called an "utterly mindless status quo" which is viewed as a politically convenient arrangement by the ruling elites of both countries.
"Any shift is compromise which amounts to treason," he said.
"For the past seven decades the people of Kashmir remain trapped in this rhetoric of the status quo, living a life of bondage in the world's most militarised zone, yearning to come out of it, pining for a breakthrough," he said.
He said a shift from the status quo is only possible when the two sides sit over a dialogue and added that every time there seems to be some movement towards that "elusive" engagement between the two countries and some hope grows, there occurs something which pushes things back.
"The current backtracking and hardening of position by the government of India is directly linked to its general elections which are due early next year. The ruling BJP cannot afford to be seen soft on "terror" - a frightening bogey which has been created and which in India is now synonymous with Pakistan," said the leader.
Saying electoral dividends prevail over reason, Farooq said the refusal to talk has not only held the Kashmiris hostage but also placed the region on a dangerous trajectory which poses threat to people of both India and Pakistan.