The Congress on Wednesday welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statement that the persistent Kashmir issue can be resolved by embracing every Kashmiri, saying that the latter believes in such a policy then he should move towards attaining it.
Congress leader Meem Afzal hailed PM Modi’s assertion that neither bullets nor abuses will solve the Kashmir issue.
“I believe that if PM Modi has realised that the policy that has been going to solve the Kashmir issue is not going to help anymore and therefore there has to be a shift in that policy. He is correct that there is no solution with "Goli and Gali" (bullets and brickbats). And I believe if his new policy is to 'embrace' then he should move towards that direction,” Afzal told ANI.
On the contrary, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram reminded PM Modi that “one cannot embrace with a gun in hand”.
In a series of strongly worded tweets, the former Union minister took on the PM over his Independence Day speech.
"PM said "will embrace Kashmir". Humbly submit one cannot embrace with a gun in hand. PM said "GST showed India's capability". It actually showed India's capacity to mess up implementation," he said.
Addressing the nation on the 71st Independence Day from the ramparts of the historic Red Fort, PM Modi on Tuesday asserted that his government is committed to restoring the lost glory of Kashmir and its status as 'heaven on earth'.
"Na gaali se samasya sulajhne wali hai, na goli se, samasya suljhegi har Kashmiri ko gale lagane se (Kashmir probem cannot be resolved by either bullets or by abuses. It can be resolved by embracing all Kashmiris)," Modi said in his fourth Independence Day speech.
‘PM Modi’s words on Kashmir very well received by people’, says Omar Abdullah
Opposition National Conference (NC) working president Omar Abdullah said PM's speech has been received very well by the people in the valley, but the words should now be followed by action.
"PM Modi's words for Kashmir have been very well received by the people here but everyone here is weary of yet more talk and (and) no concrete action," he wrote on Twitter.
"The proof of the pudding is in the eating. We look forward to being embraced in the warm grip of understanding, acceptance and respect," the former J-K chief minister said.
"That respect must include respect for the unique status J&K enjoys within the constitution of India that sets it apart from all other states," he said, referring to the row over Article 35A, which provides special rights to the citizens of J-K, of the Constitution.
Abdullah also took a dig at news channels, asking that "without the goli (bullets) and the gaali (abuses) what would happen to the TV news studios that specialise in deploying these weapons against all Kashmiris?"
Mehbooba Mufti welcomes PM's Kashmir outreach
Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti today welcomed Prime Minister Narendra Modi's remarks. In a statement issued here, Chief Minister Mufti said she has all along believed that only dialogue and peaceful means can help in resolving issues as the futility of violence has been established all around.
"The slogan -- Bandook se na goli se, Baat banegi boli se (neither guns nor bullets, only dialogue can resolve the issue) -- coined by the PDP (her party) some 15 years ago is as relevant today as it was then," she said.
Mirwaiz welcomes PM's speech on Kashmir
Moderate Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq also joined the Kashmir-based parties in welcoming PM Modi's statement, saying if humanity and justice replace bullets and abuses, resolution of Kashmir issue can become a reality.
"Welcome @narendramodi also believes Goli (bullets) and gaali (abuses) will not help resolve Kashmir if insaniyat (humanity) and (and) insaaf (justice) replace them Resolution can become a Reality," he wrote on Twitter.