Nayanar flays Govt. stand on Hurriyat team's visit

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, AUG. 30. The former Chief Minister, Mr. E. K. Nayanar, has termed as `grossly negligent' the Government's response to the proposed Hurriyat team visit to Kerala on September 2.

In a statement here today, Mr. Nayanar regretted the Government's failure to see the likely consequences of the visit and its argument that since the All Party Hurriyat Conference (APHC) had not been banned by the Central Government, there was nothing that the State could do in the matter.

Mr. Nayanar said it was sad that the Onam days were being used for communally divisive and anti-national campaigns. The BJP decision to organise hartals in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode on the day of the Hurriyat team's expected arrival would accentuate the current divisions. The hartals would also cause serious hardship to the people.

The APHC was an outfit led by organisations arguing for secession from India and merger of Kashmir with Pakistan. There were also those who argued that Kashmir should remain autonomous and with more powers. The CPI(M) was keenly observing the conflicting arguments. The party was of the view that the Hurriyat should not be banned but tackled politically. The party was also of the firm view that Kashmir was an indivisible part of India but should be given greater autonomy.