The separatist All Parties Hurriyat Conference Wednesday ruled out meeting government emissary K C Pant, who is on a six-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir.
"Pant's mission has lost substance and glamour too, if it had any," said APHC chairman Prof Abdul Gani Bhat, in an exclusive interview to rediff.com here.
"The ladder which he (Pant) was required to ascend has broken to pieces after the prime minister (Atal Bihari Vajpayee) invited the Pakistani chief executive (General Pervez Musharraf) for the proposed summit meeting," Bhat said, adding, "Pant's Mission Kashmir is dead."
On the prime minister's statement that representatives of the separatist conglomerate should first talk to Pant before meeting Musharaf, Bhat said, "Now that the talking is going to happen at the highest level, lower levels
cannot deliver anything."
"We are yet to receive an invitation from the Pakistan government about a meeting with the chief executive. Once we get it, we will discuss it in our executive, before taking any decision."
He said meeting pro-India political leaders, houseboat owners and businessmen, in Srinagar was "not going to lead to any change on the ground".
"If you are to bring about change, you have to address the core issue."
"Peace does not happen on lips. It has to be established on ground and you can never do it unless you recognise realities on ground," Bhat said.
Pant had on Tuesday said that the absence of peace was hampering the state's development. Pant also said that unemployment was also a major problem in Kashmir.
Bhat said, "We don't live by bread alone. Bread is important. We have other cravings more important than bread. Blood flows for what? For the
pleasure of it. Is it?"
The APHC executive met here Tuesday to discuss the situation in the valley following the prime minister's invitation to the Pakistan chief executive for talks. All executive members attended the meeting.
On Union Foreign Minister Jaswant Singh's statement that
Kashmir was an integral part of India, Bhat said, " The problem with Indian leaders is that they shy away from reality."
"What will Musharaf and Vajpayee discuss when they meet? They will discuss Kashmir. They will not discuss Punjab or Assam. They have to
discuss Kashmir only," said Bhat, adding, "This is a fact and what we need to do is recognise this."
PTI adds: Pant Wednesday held discussions with representatives of the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council as part of efforts to find a solution to the Kashmir problem.
Pant, who arrived in Leh on the second leg of his six-day
visit to Jammu and Kashmir, also met senior government
Pant is scheduled to arrive in Srinagar later in the day, for talks with former chief minister and head of the Awami National Conference G M Shah.
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