The formal call for dialogue came at a meeting of the conglomerate here. The meeting was chaired by Hurriyat (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and attended among others by former chairman Abdul Gani Bhat, Bilal Gani Lone, Aga Hassan Budgami, Zafar Akbar Bhat, Javid Mir and Shahid-ul-Islam. At the meeting, senior leaders Shabir Ahmad Shah and Nayeem Khan were conspicuous by their absence.
At the meeting, Hurriyat’s recent activities in New Delhi and track-II talks came up for discussion.
Sources said that Mirwaiz and Prof Abdul Gani Bhat briefed the participants’ about their engagements in New Delhi. The participants were told that besides meeting Sartaj Aziz, some of the conglomerate leaders also met former RAW Chief A S Dulat, Prem Shanker Jha, Ashok Bhan, Satish Lamba and Wajahat Habibullah.
Sources said that the participants expressed their satisfaction, but emphasized that GoI should take certain Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) for the dialogue. They also asked the Hurriyat leadership that “people have hopes in the conglomerate leadership and every development should be made public.”
Sources said Mirwaiz told the meeting that track-II players are keen about the resumption of dialogue and want an end to prevailing status quo. “They urged for resuming the dialogue. But we told them there must be conducive atmosphere for talks and that could be created by acting on our demands that have been put forth before GoI during NDA regime,” sources said.
“We discussed our meetings with Sartaj Aziz and other people,” Mirwaiz told Greater Kashmir. He said the conglomerate is ready for any dialogue that is aimed at resolving Kashmir issue. “For dialogue there must be conducive atmosphere.”
Mirwaiz said the atmosphere can be created by acting on the demands they have put before GoI. “Our demands were revocation of Armed Forces Special Power Act (AFSPA), demilitarization and release of political prisoners,” Mirwaiz said. He reiterated that the demands should be fulfilled in a step-by-step process.
Hurriyat (M) chairman said AFSPA is very important among these demands. “Kashmir problem has a human dimension. Such steps related to human suffering should be addressed on priority,” he said, adding that by acting on such issues conducive atmosphere can be created for result-oriented dialogue.
Mirwaiz said there are only two ways for resolving the vexed Kashmir issue. “UN resolutions and triangular dialogue are the only two ways. We are in favour of peace in the region and welcome any dialogue that is aimed at resolving Kashmir issue,” the Mirwaiz reiterated.
In a statement released by Hurriyat Conference (M), the separatist conglomerate said elections were no substitute to right to self-determination and that polls would have no bearing on the legal and historical status of the ‘disputed Kashmir region.’ The participants said that Kashmir was an UN-recognized international dispute and therefore its solution lies either by implementing the pending UN resolutions or through meaningful result-oriented tripartite dialogue between India, Pakistan and Kashmiris.
The participants agreed that without solving Kashmir issue, peace would not return to South Asia, political uncertainty would continue to plague the region, and progress and prosperity would remain an unfulfilled dream. The statement added that it was important to hammer out a dignified solution of Kashmir issue according to the wishes and aspirations of Kashmiri people.
Expressing concern over the ‘worsening’ human rights situation in Kashmir, the participants decided that Hurriyat would observe human rights week from December 5. They said during the HR week, Hurriyat would conduct seminars and programmes apprising people and world about the ‘HR violations committed by Indian troops in Kashmir.’
The statement said that the first seminar would be held in Kupwara on Dec 5, second on December 6 in Islamabad (Anantnag), 8 December at Hurriyat headquarters Rajbagh, on 9 December Hurriyat would organize a photo exhibition and showcase a documentary film highlighting HR violations in Kashmir.
On Dec 10, the statement said, that entire Hurriyat leadership would stage a peaceful sit-in in Srinagar to protest HR violations. During these programmes, the Hurriyat would raise the issues of AFSPA, enforced disappearances, unmarked graves, torture, etc to apprise the world about the human rights violations in Kashmir.