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Majority in Kashmir not anti-India: Advani

Saturday, September 04, 2010 08:28:51 PM, IANS

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New Delhi: Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader L.K. Advani Saturday said a majority of people in Jammu and Kashmir do not nurture any anti-India sentiments.

Writing in his blog, Advani said surveys conducted by even pro-Pakistan persons have found that most people in the state do not support merger with Pakistan.

"Not many outside the state are aware of the state's diverse demography," Advani said in his lengthy blog on Kashmir.

"Muslims among whom separatist sentiments and separatist violence are generally confined, constitute a minority in the state. Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists and non-Kashmiri Muslims like Gujars, Bakarwals and Kargil Shias are nearly 60 percent of the state's population. They do not nurture any anti-India sentiments," he said.

"A few years back, an opinion poll conducted under the patronage of Lord Avebury, a known British protagonist of Pakistan, found that only 6 percent Kashmiris wanted to join Pakistan, 61 percent wanted to remain in India and 33 percent were undecided," Advani said.

"In May 2010, King's College London university, at the instance of the son of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi of Libya, carried out another similar survey in Kashmir. This survey found that only 2 percent of the people of Kashmir wanted to join Pakistan," Advani added.

Sharing his feeling at a recent conclave of defence services veterans, Advani said the participants were extremely upset that "in every statement about Jammu and Kashmir being made these days, not only by the separatists in that state but even by government leaders, the security forces are being unabashedly demonized."

Advani recalled the key-note address of S.K. Sinha, a former army vice chief and former governor of the state, who said: "We merely assert that Kashmir is an integral part of India and a solution will emerge through dialogue."

"We as a nation, suffer from a Panipat syndrome which stands for lack of strategic vision, remaining unprepared to face crises and not learning from the past," Advani quoted Sinha as having said.

"We have blundered from one folly to another on Kashmir and have been repeatedly scoring self-goals. We committed the cardinal folly of taking the Kashmir issue to the United Nations," Advani quoted Sinha.

"India was outwitted at Shimla in 1972 and surrendered our gains without settling the Kashmir issue.

"Though parliament passed a unanimous resolution asserting that the area of Kashmir in illegal occupation of Pakistan is an integral part of India, we have done nothing to assert this right," Advani further quoted Sinha as having said.

"In the name of freedom of press, we allow the valley press to constantly carry out anti-India false propaganda. The law on sedition does not seem to apply in Kashmir," Advani quoted the ex-governor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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