Pressing for urgent resolution of Kashmir issue, Huriyat Conference chief Mirwaiz Umar Farooq today invoked former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee while asking the Narendra Modi government to launch a process of "dialogue" and "engagement" with separatists and Pakistan.
"Kashmir is not an administrative or an economic problem but a political issue. Instead of hacking at the leaves, Prime Minister Narendra Modi should address the root cause," the Mirwaiz said addressing a gathering at Chrar-e-Sharief in Budgam district.
He said the government of India's promises of development projects, economic packages and economic stability were a "farce until it showed the will to resolve Kashmir issue through peaceful means of dialogue".
He said resolution of vexed Kashmir issue was a must for lasting peace and political stability of entire South Asia and it was not an issue that could be resolved by extending political favours, economic packages, job bonanzas and subsidies but by taking a political initiative.
Recalling the efforts of the previous NDA government, the Mirwaiz said, "Vajpayee had understood that Kashmir is a political and a human issue and its resolution was a necessity for the peace and prosperity of the entire South Asian region".
Moving ahead in this direction, the Vajpayee government had initiated a process of dialogue and engagement with Islamabad as well as with the Kashmiri leadership, he said.
He suggested that the Centre "should follow the policies of Vajpayee and initiate a process of dialogue and engagement" instead of "using its military might and adopting a military approach".
Terming resolution of Kashmir issue inevitable, the Mirwaiz said keeping it pending had hijacked the peace of the entire region for the past seven decades and put the lives of billions of people at stake.
"For avoiding any such disaster, there was a need to resolve Kashmir keeping in mind the wishes and aspirations of Kashmiris," he said.