Interlocutor’s report on J & K.

Kashmir
interlocutors
recommend
‘meaningful
autonomy’
Advocating “meaningful
autonomy” and speedy
development, the three
interlocutors on Jammu and
Kashmir submitted their
report to home minister P
Chidambaram Wednesday, a
year after they were
appointed to draw a
roadmap to peace, sources
said.
The interlocutors — journalist
Dileep Padgoankar, academic
Radha Kumar and former
civil servant MM Ansari — are
learnt to have also
recommended the
withdrawal of the Armed
Forces Special Powers Act
(AFSPA) and the Disturbed
Areas Act from the state that
has seen a bruising
insurgency for over two
decades.
“The minister has told us he
would now take the report
forward,” Padgaonkar told
reporters after presenting
the report.
The report, sources said, has
recommended
developmental councils for
all the three regions –
Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh –
and devolution of powers to
the sub-regions.
It also recommends a
massive economic package to
tackle the huge
unemployment in the state
and major infrastructure
development to provide
connectivity and boost
tourism, officials in the know
said.
While avoiding the “pre-1952
status” phraseology, the
report speaks about ensuring
“meaningful autonomy” for
the state, while preserving its
distinct regional and ethnic
diversities, it is learnt.
The report has also put on
record the perceptions of the
hundreds of people the team
had interacted with during
the past one year and even
the views of the separatists,
who refused to interact with
them, the sources added.
The trio was appointed Oct
13 last year, when the
Kashmir situation had turned
grim following street protests
and the killing of more than
100 youth.
A year on, there was
apprehension in Jammu, one
of the three main regions of
Jammu and Kashmir.
Residents in the region felt
the report could be “one
sided and against the
interests of Jammu”.
“In their last press
conference in Srinagar the
interlocutors said clearly they
would be addressing the
aspirations of the people
within the framework of the
country’s constitution,” said
professor Muzaffar Ahmad, a
college teacher in Srinagar.
Jammu’s main demand is for
an increase in the number of
legislative assembly seats.
The region has 37 seats in the
house of 87, the Valley has
46, while Ladakh has four
seats.
The separatists say the
interlocutors’ report is
immaterial and what really
matters is a permanent
settlement of the Kashmir
dispute.
Abdul Gani Bhat,
spokesperson and former
chairman of the moderate
Hurriyat group, told IANS in
Srinagar that what mattered
was the permanent
settlement of the dispute on
Kashmir.
Hardline separatist leader
Syed Ali Geelani called the
appointment of the
interlocutors another
gimmick by New Delhi to
push the dispute under the
carpet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s