rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » News » Ex-PoK PM meets Dr Singh

Ex-PoK PM meets Dr Singh

April 30, 2007 19:06 IST

Sardar Mohammad Abdul Qayyum Khan, former president and prime minister of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, said that there is tremendous difference between his first visit to India in 2005 and second visit in 2007.

Sardar Qayyum and his supporters were in Delhi to take part in the three-day 'heart-to-heart dialogue' on Kashmirs on both sides of the Line of Control. "I must congratulate Professor Bhim Singh and his national Panther's Party for organising the event of deliberation by genuine Kashmiris on Kashmir," he said.

The visiting Kashmiri leader from Muzzaffarabad called on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during his stay in India.

"This was the first time that the prime minister of India has met a leader of PoK," Bhim Singh, the man behind the show, said.

Though Sardar Qayyum maintained that it was a courtesy call, sources close to him said that the two leaders discussed all issues relating to Jammu and Kashmir.

From the Indian side, Congress, People's Democratic Party, National Conference, Janata Dal-Secular, Communist Party of India and Communist Party-Marxist were major participants; from the Pakistani side Muslim Conference, ruling party of PoK, PPP headed by Benazir Bhutto took part in the closed-door sessions, where intellectuals of both sides also took part.

The two sides agreed to continue the dialogue in days to come and issued a seven-point agreement, which included release of all prisoners from jails, given an opportunity to return home.

"This includes all," Sardar Qayyum Khan said when asked to clarify if this applies to terrorists in jails as well.

"We strongly recommend that all the old historical routes including the pony, road and rail be opened while stregthening the ongoing talks between India and Pakistan and assure to facilitate the process," the joint commuique said.

Onkar Singh in New Delhi