The Bold Voice of J&K

Cool down

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The din created after the Manipur strike has not died till date with India and Pakistan getting into verbal duel and US asking both to take steps to reduce tensions and move toward resuming dialogue. And today Pakistan too has retorted back by bringing the weapons it has as a force mediator. This type of diatribe has served no cause to the peace initiatives. The relationship between India and Pakistan is critical to advancing peace and stability in South Asia, and any step India and Pakistan can take to reduce tensions and move toward resuming dialogue is always welcome. India sees conducting of elections under the Gilgit-Baltistan Empowerment and Self-Govt Order, as an attempt by Pakistan to camouflage its forcible and illegal occupation of the region which comprises part of entire State of Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan hoodwinked the people of Kashmir, by granting ‘political autonomy’ to Northern Areas, the erstwhile Gilgit Agency that formed an integral part of the undivided princely State of Jammu and Kashmir, which in toto belongs to India. Pakistan has illegally occupied the Northern Areas since 1947. With Pakistan announcing elections in the occupied area of Kashmir, the bilateral relations have been dented and carrying forward the peace agenda looks a difficult proposition. India has to refocus its anti-terror and foreign policies to devise new strategy to protect its citisen and assets abroad as well as   with in the country. Rajnath was candid as he went on to warn Pakistan and its sympathizers to keep away from Kashmir and to vouch for security forces capabilities to tackle the situation. Few days ago Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar was in the State and while visiting border areas cautioned Pakistan to  keep hands off Kashmir. By going their statements it looks as if the integrity and existence of the country is under threat of external aggression. And it has become ritualistic for the Central leaders to issue such statements when visiting border states giving credence that it will be heard across better than issuing such statements from New Delhi.  The change must begin as early as possible and any delay on this front could have far reaching ramifications.

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