Lack of proper ‘Kashmir policy’ decried


ISLAMABAD: A multiparty conference held here on Friday lamented that Pakistan doesn’t have a proper policy on Kashmir issue and called upon the government to summon a joint sitting of parliament to discuss the problem.

Main political and religious parties except for the MQM, ANP and some Shia groups attended the conference organised by the Jamaat-i-Islami.

The leaders decided to hold a protest march up to the Wagah border on Saturday to highlight human rights violations being committed by Indian forces in held Kashmir.

The participants included former Senate chairman Syed Nayyar Hussain Bukhari, Faisal Kareem Kundi, Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafiq, Leader of the House in Senate Raja Zafarul Haq and former chief justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhary.

The speakers severely criticised the politicians and respective governments for their failure to move ahead for the settlement of the Kashmir dispute.

“All opportunities [for resolution of the dispute]have been lost since 1948 by the governments in power, including the military dictators, and the most talked-about UN resolution was actually filed by India,” Iftikhar Chaudhary said.

Mr Bukhari said that the politicians needed to own the Kashmir issue and only the ‘babus of the foreign office’ should not be the guiding force about it. “We should also review our own flaws and look forward towards a negotiated solution”.

The speakers criticised the Special Parliamentary Committee on Kashmir, saying it had done nothing significant to highlight the issue at the international level.

Jamiat Ulema Islam-F chief Maulana Fazalur Rehman, who heads the special parliamentary committee on Kashmir, said there was no clear policy over Kashmir and called for raising the issue at the international fora.

MNA Ijazul Haq, JI chief Senator Sirajul Haq, MNA Sheikh Rashid, veteran politician Javed Hashmi and others also spoke.

“We need to evolve creative policies to involve international community mainly through diplomatic channels to pressure India,” said Amir Rana, director at the Pakistan Institute of Policy Studies.


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