Sunday, September 26, 2010


Srinagar; Sept 25 (Only Kashmir): Syed Ali Shah Geelani today reiterated that his ‘preferred personal choice’ for the future of Jammu and Kashmir is its accession with Pakistan but he would ultimately go by ‘consensus final decision’, if and when that comes about.
In an interview with NEWSX TV channel’s Seema Mustafa, the hardline separatist leader defended his ‘first option’ on three main counts: That the option of ‘independent J&K’ was not viable as India, Pakistan and China were not in favour of the idea and without their collective support this proposition was neither feasible nor sustainable; that the UN resolution limiting the choice of accession between India and Pakistan continued to remain in force and that ‘our bitter experience of Indian occupation leaves us to the only other course of accession with Pakistan’.
Asked if his stand would not mean disunity within the separatist camp, Geelani argued that the ongoing movement was unidirectional because it aimed at ‘freedom from Indian occupation’ over which everyone was in agreement, including Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik. Only after achieving this objective, if there is consensus on independent Kashmir he would fall in line. But he felt that that would not be a viable proposition.
He ruled any dialogue with India until Indian government accepted ‘disputed’ nature of J&K and agreed to resolve the issue through trilateral ‘not bilateral’ talks.
Geelani claimed that the dialogue has nothing to do with mainstream parties as they had no problem with the existing state of affairs. ‘Minorities in the state also have no problem with India’, he argued. But ‘majority’ is not satisfied and has been agitating and making sacrifices to free itself from occupation. Meaningful dialogue would thus be limited to that amongst India, Pakistan and those representing ‘genuine sentiments’ of the majority.


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