Modi declares Kashmir problem to be solved by embracing people

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NEW DELHI: Wishing all the best to Kashmiri people, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wed­nesday said that he would seek peace in the disputed region by embracing its people. The government will move forward in Jammu and Kashmir by adopting an approach of embracing all and not by ‘goli and gaali’ (bullet and abuse).
In his speech on the Independence Day at the Red Fort in New Delhi, he said his government was following the teachings of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. “Atalji called for ‘insaniyat’ (humanity), ‘Kashmi­riat’ (eclectic Kashmiri culture) and ‘jamhooriyat’ (democracy). I also said that the issues in Kashmir can be resolved by embracing the people of Kashmir.”
Mr Modi said his government was committed to the all-round development of all sections and regions in Jammu and Kashmir, the country’s only Muslim-majority state. He said Jammu and Kash­mir, now under Governor’s Rule, would hold the much-awaited Panchayat and local body elections.
“Every problem in Jammu and Kashmir can be solved by embracing its people. Whether it is of Ladakh or Jammu or Kashmir Valley, there should be balanced and equal development. All expectations of the people there should be fulfilled, infrastructure should be strengthened and we should walk with everyone. We don’t want to move in the path of guns and abuse,” he said.
Jammu and Kashmir plunged into political crisis on June 19 when the Bharatiya Janata Party ended its alliance with the People’s Democratic Party, forcing chief minister Mehbooba Mufti to resign and paving the way for the state to come under direct Central rule to be overseen by governor NN Vohra.