Continue dialogue with Pakistan, Omar urges centre

October 22nd, 2011 - 8:06 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh New Delhi, Oct 22 (IANS) Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Saturday urged the central government to continue dialogue with Pakistan for a “permanent solution to the Kashmir issue”.

“…the long-term and permanent solution to the Kashmir issue is unlikely to emerge without an active engagement with Pakistan,” Abdullah said at the 56th meeting of the National Development Council (NDC) here.

“The cross-LOC (line of control) trade and the bus service between the two sides will not yield further if we do not continue with the external dialogue process,” he said.

“The relative peace in the state and the present global scenario provides us an opportunity to move further on the dialogue process,” he added.

Abdullah said he held the view that “the economic growth of Jammu and Kashmir is inextricably linked with the political resolution of the grievances and aspirations of its people”.

The chief minister said the “outlook today is that of hopeful optimism” in the state, hit by two decade of separatist militancy resulting in the death of thousands of people.

The NDC meeting was attended by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia and several central ministers.

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