Stating that the confidence-building measures initiated by the Centre would help further the process of dialogue, journalist and interlocutor Dileep Padgaonkar on Friday said the team's mission was fulfilling its mandate and not to pass judgments.
Arriving on a weeklong visit of the State, Mr. Padgaonkar told journalists in Jammu that to evolve a permanent solution to the problem of Jammu and Kashmir “we have to take care of aspirations of all the regions and communities in the State.” He said that after their previous visits they had forwarded recommendations to the Centre and “they have started working on them.”
Refuting a news report quoting his interview on a TV channel, he said his remarks were taken out of context and the newspaper had given them a twist. He said he never criticised the Omar Abdullah government.
He was quoted by a section of the media as having described the State government as “inefficient and insensitive” and also saying that not even 30 percent of the Rs. 6,000-crore Plan allocation to the State was spent though the current financial year was drawing to a close.
Mr. Padgaonkar denied that he had said that the People's Democratic Party's “self-rule” document was “better.”
However, he maintained that both the autonomy and self-rule documents were important. “But we would like other documents and suggestions from other groups and parties that come to us.”
Mr. Padgaonkar, who was accompanied by his team member M.M. Ansari, said that they would be visiting the border districts of Rajouri and Poonch from Saturday and then head to Kashmir from December 21. The other team member Radha Kumar would also join them, the sources said.
The visit to the border districts is meant to set up “broad contours” for a “political settlement,” Mr. Padgaonkar said.
The team would also visit the areas near the Line of Control and meet people and Army personnel posted there.
Keywords: Jammu and Kashmir issue