Restore ceasefire on borders to save lives: Omar

Excelsior Correspondent

SRINAGAR, Oct 4: National Conference working president Omar Abdullah today said hostility and shelling on the Line of Control and the International Border was a cause of misery and suffering for the people of Jammu and Kashmir and all efforts should be made to restore an effective ceasefire to prevent any loss of lives.
Addressing a public meeting at Tulail in Gurez as a part of his two-day tour of the frontier area, Omar said a sustainable and comprehensive political initiative was the need of the hour and both New Delhi and Islamabad should deescalate from the present hostile situation as peace was imperative for prosperity and reconciliation.
“It is the people of the State, who suffer immensely and have to bear enormous economic, social and human costs because of hostilities across the Line of Control and the International Border. The people of Jammu and Kashmir are the worst victims of such aggression from both sides and can also be the primary beneficiaries of peace and stability. The State needs peace and stability to overcome the turmoil that has inflicted grievous wounds on thousands of families and such a sustainable peace can only be achieved through dialogue”, Omar said.
The National Conference Working President said every loss of a precious human life due to cross LoC and cross border shelling was a painful reminder of the devastating costs of conflict.
“My heart bleeds for these innocent civilians across the State who have to be usurped from their hearths and have to live under the constant fear of violence and destruction. We owe it to our people to exhaust all possible options and resources to pave a way of peace and prosperity. It is incumbent on Pakistan to reciprocate to initiatives of dialogue and peace and both countries can benefit from mutual cooperation, understanding and dialogue on all outstanding issues,” Omar said.
“We need to understand the challenges faced by the people of these areas and what our mothers and sisters and young children have to go through and it is from this sense of empathy and realization that we are obliged to explore methods to resolve the political issue. Our State requires a serious political initiative to come out of the cycle of violence and instability. And such a political initiative is even more important for people living in far-flung and frontier areas”, the National Conference leader said.
Omar said the State was facing a lot of unprecedented challenges in terms of political forces trying to weaken and fragment the State to further a long-held ideological agenda.
“The onslaught on the State’s Special Status is a matter of serious concern especially considering the weak and inadequate defence being mounted by the incumbent State Government. The PDP-BJP Alliance poses a huge danger to the State in terms of Article 370 and Article 35-A and National Conference is leaving no stone unturned to oppose this onslaught that is aimed at robbing our people of their constitutionally guaranteed political rights”, the NC leader added.
Senior National Conference Leaders including Party Provincial President Nasir Aslam Wani and MLA Gurez and Deputy Speaker Nazir Ahmed Khan (Gurezi) also addressed the gathering.