Grab opportunity to stop guns roaring after Eid: NC, Cong
It’s Kashmiris’ victory: Rasheed
The mainstream parties Wednesday welcomed the “conditional ceasefire” announced by New Delhi saying that the opportunity should be used to start a “sustained dialogue” so that guns do not start roaring again after Eid.
However, ruling Peoples Democratic Party’s alliance partner BharatiyaJanata Party (BJP) said it should be seen as a bold step and not “something to be welcomed in one word”.
“It is not unconditional ceasefire as was demanded by some. What was demanded by State government was unilateral unconditional ceasefire. What we are trying to feed is that it is conditional in nature. It will not allow militants to run away or to regroup themselves,” said BJP chief spokesperson, Sunil Sethi.
The State BJP had earlier opposed the ceasefire proposal tooth and nail after the All Party Meet was held here last week.
Government of India Wednesday declared a conditional ceasefire in Jammu Kashmir during the holy month of Ramadan.
It said the decision was taken as it was important to isolate the forces that bring a bad name to Islam by resorting to mindless violence and terror.
While the main opposition parties National Conference and Congress welcomed the step, the separatist groups remained tightlipped over the announcement.
Hurriyat (G) spokesperson Ghulam Ahmad Gulzar said that they will deliberate on it first and then comment.
“Our Chairman Syed Ali Geelani will convene a consultative meeting on it first and brief about it accordingly,” he told Rising Kashmir.
Senior Hurriyat (M) leader, Abdul GaniBhat said the conglomerate’s Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq would only talk on it.
“I am no one to comment, I can’t say anything,” he said.
However, the Mirwaiz neither answered repeated phone calls nor replied to text messages about his reaction on the announcement.
Meanwhile, the mainstream parties said they were hopeful that the step needs to be taken forward as it should not remain a casual exercise till the end of Amarnathyatra or Eid.
Ruling PDP chief spokesperson, Rafi Ahmad Mir said it was not the desire of PDP only but of all the people and parties who participated in the All Party Meet.
“It was the desire of all the people… We are happy that New Delhi agreed to our proposal. We believe it will help in stopping the cycle of violence and pave way for a sustained dialogue. We hope everyone will respect it,” Mir told Rising Kashmir.
Main opposition National Conference Provincial President, Kashmir, NasirAslamWani said it is a welcome step but the other side also needed to reciprocate.
“We feel the other side should also reciprocate and a sustained dialogue has to be initiated to give help arrive at a political resolution to the issue. Otherwise, after Eid if the guns start roaring again, it will become a meaningless exercise,” Wani told Rising Kashmir.
State Congress chief, Ghulam Ahmad Mir said it should not remain a casual exercise.
“It should be welcomed in whatever shape it has come. Saving the lives of innocents is a big thing but the initiative should be taken forward,” he said.
AIP chief and MLA Langate, Engineer Rasheed said GoI’s decision had proved militants enjoy public support and eliminating them makes them stronger.
“The unilateral ceasefire is a victory of Kashmiris and now New Delhi should move beyond ceasefire and offer unconditional talks to United Jihad Council and Hurriyat leadership and then start tripartite talks between all the three stakeholders,” he said.
Rasheed said Kashmiris had not sacrificed for the ceasefire or autonomy or any resolution outside the United Nations resolutions but for the right to self-determination, which is their birth right.
He appealed all political parties not to waste time but try to move beyond ceasefire by asking New Delhi to start dialogue with the “real stakeholders”.
CPI (M) State Secretary and MLA Kulgam, Muhammad Yusuf Tarigami said the announcement is a welcome step.
“Not to conduct operations during the month of Ramadhan is a welcome move. We believe violence is option for none, especially for the people living in the conflict. People of Kashmir have been the worst victims of the hostilities during the last many decades,” he said.
Tarigami said the volatile situation in Kashmir where guns have recurred havoc does require some bold step to put an end to the ongoing violence.
“Silence of guns on both sides is the need of hour and we believe it needs to be backed up by serious political initiatives which enable us to involve all the stakeholders,” he said.
Tarigami said the Prime Minister was duty-bound to announce a plan which could help in initiating a process that could finally lead to some acceptable solution.
Former union minister, SaifuddinSoz said no blood-letting should be welcomed on all sides.
“Announcing of ceasefire is good enough to be celebrated and the ceasefire should be utilized to carry forward a process of dialogue,” he said. “It would be even better if the ceasefire in jointly declared by both sides.”
Earlier, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti had proposed GoI to announce a ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir during the holy month of Ramadan and Amarnathyatra.
Announcing a conditional ceasefire, Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) asked the government forces not to launch operation against militants during the holy month.
However, State BJP spokesperson toed a different line from other political groups saying with this conditional ceasefire, the GoI has kept the retaliation part with itself.
“It is not that somebody fires the gun and retaliation won’t be there. It is not unconditional ceasefire… as was proposed by the State government,” Sethi said.
On whether State BJP welcomed it, Sethi said, “I can’t say in one word whether we welcome it or not. The decision is a bold one. But it will not allow militants to run away or to regroup because if any activity is done by the other party, there will be retaliation.”
Sethi said where is the question of welcoming it when the move had been made by the appropriate authority.
“We will now wait and watch the activity from the other side,” he said.