- Mehbooba Mufti called for dialogue with Pakistan to "end bloodshed"
- "There is no solution other than dialogue," the chief minister said
- Her pitch comes after the deadly terror attack in the Sunjuwan army camp
"If we don't talk about talks with Pakistan, then who will? People from Bihar won't!" Ms Mufti said at a function today. India, she said, has fought and won all wars against Pakistan. "But even now, there is no solution other than dialogue. Till when will our jawans and civilians keep dying?" added the Chief Minister, whose People's Democratic Party is ruling the state in alliance with the BJP.
The Chief Minister's fresh pitch for renewal of talks came on the heels of one of the deadliest terror attacks in the state at the Sunjuwan army camp, in which five army personnel and a civilian died yesterday. Another suicide attack on a CRPF camp in the heart of Srinagar was repulsed this morning.
In the state assembly, she later said she would be attacked by some media houses for her stance. "Wonder what some media houses would have called Atal-ji (former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee) if he took bus to Lahore in today's time and talked of a dialogue"
She reinforced her message later with a tweet:
Dialogue with Pakistan is necessary if we are to end bloodshed. I know I will be labelled anti-national by news anchors tonight but that doesn't matter. The people of J&K are suffering. We have to talk because war is not an option.— Mehbooba Mufti (@MehboobaMufti) February 12, 2018
The ties between the two nations hit a fresh low last year with the regular ceasefire violations, cross-border terror attacks and the death sentence for Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav by a military court in Pakistan.
India and Pakistan have kept up the engagement on an official level. The last meeting between National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and his Pakistani counterpart Nasir Khan Janjua took place in Bangkok in December. India said the talks were focused on cross-border terrorism and that Pakistan was told that "talks and terror can't go hand in hand".