ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Tuesday that there might be a better chance of peace talks with India if his counterpart Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won the general elections.
“If the next Indian government is led by the opposition Congress party, it might be too scared to seek a settlement with Pakistan over Indian-occupied Kashmir (IoK), fearing a backlash from the right,” the prime minister told a small group of foreign journalists in an interview.
“Perhaps if the BJP – a right wing party — wins, some kind of settlement on Kashmir could be reached.”
This is despite the massive alienation that Muslims in IOK and India are facing under the Modi regime, Imran observed.
“I never thought I would see what is happening in India right now. Muslim-ness is being attacked.”
The prime minister said Indian Muslims he knew — who many years ago were happy about their situation in India — were now very worried by extreme Hindu nationalism.
PM Imran asks if Indians, Israelis are outraged at their leaders’ ‘moral bankruptcy’
“Modi, like Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, is electioneering based on fear and nationalist feeling.”
The prime minister noted that the BJP’s pledge this week to propose stripping decades-old special rights from the people of IoK that prevent outsiders from buying property there is a major concern, though it could also be electioneering.
He added that the Kashmir liberation movement was a political struggle and there was no military solution.
Imran reiterated that Islamabad was determined to dismantle all militant groups in the country and that the government had the full support of the army for the programme.
The premier said if the polls turned against Modi in the next few weeks, there was still a possibility that India could take military action against Pakistan to boost his party’s election campaign.
“It is vital for Pakistan to have peaceful ties with its neighbours, Afghanistan, India and Iran, if it was to have the kind of economy needed to pull 100 million people out of poverty,” he remarked.
Earlier, Imran accused India and Israel of moral bankruptcy over their election annexation pledges. He questioned whether the citizens of both countries felt outraged at their leaders’ “moral bankruptcy” as they defied international law to gain votes.
“When leaders in Israel and India show a moral bankruptcy in their readiness to annex occupied West Bank and IoK [Indian occupied Kashmir] in defiance of international law, United Nations Security Council resolutions, and their own Constitution for votes, don’t their people feel a sense of outrage and wonder how far they [the leaders] will go simply to win an election?” he asked in a tweet.
Israelis began voting in an election on Tuesday that could hand the conservative Netanyahu a record fifth term or see him dethroned by an ex-general who has pledged clean government and social cohesion. Netanyahu pledged last week to annex settlements in the occupied West Bank if he wins the upcoming general election.
India goes to polls next week where BJP would be trying its utmost to return with a thumping win while the main opposition Congress party would attempt to deny Modi’s party continuity in the saddle and to win a majority.(Reuters)
3 killed, 11 injured as landslide hits mini-bus in JK’s Doda
Jammu, April 24: At least three persons were killed and 11 injured when a mini-bus came under a huge boulder after a landslide hit a stretch of road in Doda district of Jammu and Kashmir Wednesday, officials said.
The mini-bus was on its way to Gandoh from Thathri, when a big rock hit it at Piyakul belt in the afternoon, they said.
Sub-Divisional Police Officer of Gandoh Bhallesa, Nawaz Khanday confirmed the casualties.
Thathri Sub-Divisional Magistrate Mohd Anwar Banday said preliminary reports suggest that the mini-bus, which was crossing the muddy patch, apparently came under debris and rocks due to the landslide.
Locals and police immediately reached the spot and after rescuing the passengers, shifted the injured ones to Primary Health Centre (PHC) Kahara.
The identification of those dead or injured in the incident is not known yet.
No one ready to take over JeM leadership in Kashmir: Army
Calling it a healthy sign, the Army on Wednesday said that there has been a decline in the recruitment of local Kashmiri people in militant outfits after the recent crackdown by the forces.
Addressing a joint press conference of the state police and the Army, Director General of Police in Jammu & Kashmir Dilbag Singh said, “Recruitment of local youth continues to be low, it is a healthy sign. 272 militants were eliminated in the state during 2018 and a large number were apprehended.”
Elaborating further on the numbers, KJS Dhillon, GOC 15 Corps, said, “Total 69 militants have been killed and 12 have been apprehended this year. Post Pulwama 41 militants have been killed and out of them 25 belonged to Jaish-e-Mohammed, 13 of them were Pakistanis.”
Dhillon added that the operations against the militants will continue with full vigour and we will not let militancy rise up.
Talking about how the forces have suppressed the Jaish-e-Mohammed, the outfit behind the Pulwama attack, Dhillon said, “We have targeted Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) leadership, the situation now is that no one is coming forward to take over the leadership of JeM in the valley. Even after Pakistan’s best efforts, we will continue to suppress JeM, specially after Pulwama attack.
Baramulla youth goes missing, family seeks help
Baramulla, April 24 : Family members of 18-year-old missing youth here have urged their son to return home and appealed government to help them in tracing him. A youth identified as Adnan Ali Chanan, son of Mohammed Ali Chanan of Arampora Baramulla district is missing since April 14.
His father Mohammad Ali Channa told KNO that soon after he left home, they tried to call him several times but “his phone was switched off. “We called our relatives and his friends but could not find him,” he said, appealing his son to return home.
After failing to trace him, the family has filed a missing report in Police station Baramulla. Meanwhile, police officials told KNO that family have lodged a missing report and further investigation have been taken up to trace out the missing youth.(KNO)
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