Peace first for dialogue
JK News Today
Srinagar, October 21
In her maiden address at the Police Commemoration Day Parade, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti promised peace and dialogue but wanted the violence and protests with children being used as shields to come to an end first.
Mehbooba voiced her serious concerns about the separatist leaders, whom she referred as “ big leaders”, using the young children as shields in the stone-throwing and petrol bomb throwing protests . “ This is regrettable,” she said and added that she is “ equally concerned over the excesses by the security forces against the civilians and inexplicable deaths,”
“The guilty would be punished,” she declared in a speech which summed up the situation in Kashmir for the past 105 days that has consumed lives, inflicted injuries and paralyzed the life with the pre-July 8 peace nowhere in sight. The current spate of protests has been pegged at the killing of Hizb-ul-Mujahadeen commander Burhan Wani – he was killed in an encounter with security forces on July 8 – the third day of Eid-ul-Fitr.
Mehbooba Mufti who was in Chief Minister’s office for less than 100 days , when the unrest started with an eruption , mostly in south Kashmir- her party PDP’s bastion, was overtaken by turn of events and the scale of protests.
In a candid narrative , the Chief Minister said that “ stones would not bring any one to table. For that, an atmosphere has to be created, we will have to reverse our mistakes or correct them to achieve an atmosphere of peace and dialogue with the stakeholders in Kashmir as also with Pakistan.”
“ All, including Pakistan, should understand that the hostilities would lead us nowhere,” and she also made it clear that Armed Forces Special Powers Act is not a permanent feature, but we can get rid of this only when there is a peaceful situation and substantive ground to remove it,” she said.
DGP K Rajendra Kumar said,” in the current unrest two policemen were killed and 5,000 others injured.”.