Separatist Hurriyat Conference leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani on Tuesday held talks with Pakistan Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani and told Pakistan to ‘press hard’ on the Kashmir issue.
This renewed statement came just a day after Geelani had raised strong objections to separate Kashmiri Pandits’ settlements in the valley, stating that it was a conspiracy to change the demography.
After his arrival here for two-day talks, the Pakistan Foreign Secretary met various factions of the separatist Hurriyat Conference at the Pakistan High commission on Tuesday evening, including Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Yasin Malik.
“Pakistan should press India hard to resolve the Kashmir issue,” Geelani told reporters after the meeting here.
He asserted that the relations between the two neighbours could not be normalised unless the core issue of Kashmir was resolved.
He also accused India of depriving the residents of Jammu and Kashmir of civil liberties and accused it of state terrorism.
A day earlier at a press conference in his Srinagar residence, Geelani had accused the government of trying to create a state within a state by having separate settlements for exiled Kashmiri Pandits in the state.
“In the garb of rehabilitating Kashmiri Pandits, New Delhi is planning to create Israeli-type settlements in Kashmir,” Geelani said.
He claimed that the government was planning to settle the RSS and Sangh Parivar members in the valley in the garb of returning Kashmiri Pandit migrants.
Geelani, however, said that he was all in favour of Kashmiri Pandits returning to their original places in the Kashmir Valley and appealed to them not to accept the government’s proposal to establish settlements.
“Kashmiri Pandits should come and settle at their original places and live along with Kashmiri Muslims. But creating separate zones in the name of Kashmiri Pandits is unacceptable. Kashmiri Pandits are part of our society,” Geelani said.
In response, Jammu and Kahsmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah dismissed the allegations as fictitious.
“Glad to see SASG’s (Syed Ali Shah Geelani) imagination and ability to create fiction has not dulled with age,” he posted on his ‘Twitter’ account.