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‘Kashmiris feel they’re used as tools for politics’

By Newsd
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Dispel the perception that Kashmir and Kashmiris are “mere tools to be used for electoral purposes”, a group led by former Union minister Yashwant Sinha has recommended in a report days after visiting the trouble-torn Valley.

“Kashmiris believe that today Indian politics has taken such a turn that there is no willingness to listen to even demands for autonomy. Today, (the) Kashmir issue is being seen as Hindu versus Muslim, and governance seen as Jammu versus Kashmir,” the group said in a six-page report, submitted to PM Modi and HM Rajnath Singh on Tuesday.

The group had visited Srinagar from October 25-27 and met senior separatist leaders, including Syed Ali Geelani, Yasin Malik, and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq.

The report underlined that there was also anger due to “excessive use of force by the security forces”.

“The violence which began with the funeral procession of slain militant Burhan Wani on July 8th has so far resulted in the death of nearly a hundred people.

The report also highlighted that Kashmiri separatist leaders think “unless India and Pakistan talk there can be no permanent solution to the Kashmir issue”.

“Most Kashmiris believe that Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was sincere in his approach to resolving the Kashmir tangle,” it said.

The report recommended to start the process of reopening schools and as a precursor to this, release forthwith all first time offender school children and minors arrested under PSA.