Srinagar: Awami Ittehad Party (AIP) president and former legislator Engineer Sheikh Abdul Rasheed on Thursday said that the Pakistan premier Imran Khan wanting to start peace talks is a positive step but said both India and Pakistan should not take Kashmiris for granted.
“Imran is trying to start talks with India. It is a welcome step. However, both the countries should not take the common Kashmiris for granted,” Er Rasheed said while addressing a press conference at Press Club Kashmir in Srinagar.
He said that Kashmir is a political issue and needs to be solved politically.
“Deal this political issue politically. Don’t rule Kashmir through the barrel of the gun. All Kashmiris are well wishers of India and not its enemy,” Er Rasheed said while addressing Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
He said after such a huge mandate the prime minister should behave like a statesman and start talking about Kashmir “as no one can suppress the voices of the common people here.”
Er Rasheed said that to create conducive atmosphere in the state the government should release the political prisoners lodged in Tihar jail in Delhi as a part of Confidence Building Measures (CBMs).
“Kashmiri inmates lodged in Tihar jail should be released unconditionally,” he said.
He said that Masrat Aalam Bhat, Ghulam Qadir Bhat, Aasiya Andrabi and Dr Qasim Fakhtoo should be released unconditionally as a part of CBMs.