A Rainbow Perhaps?
The all-party delegation held promise but delivery is the key
By S. Rasheed

Srinagar: The all-party delegation led by Union home minister P. Chidambaram, who visited Jammu and Kashmir in an attempt to break the impasse in the Valley, must have been bored on their first day of engagements in Srinagar as they heard the same old rhetoric which they have been subjected to, for the past so many years.

The representatives of the mainstream political parties like National Conference, Congress, People’s Democratic Party, Bharatiya Janata Party, CPI(M) and other smaller groups, which comprised the delegation, reiterated their known stands on Kashmir. However, this time they went an extra mile by meeting Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik at their respective residences even after the Separatist leaders had turned down their invitation; yet there was no deviation in their earlier stand.

It was on the second day, when the delegation broke into several groups and decided to meet the injured persons in the hospitals and visit arson-hit Tangmarg town that the leaders from Delhi came face to face with the feelings of a common Kashmiri. Chidambaram and his dozen-odd colleagues from Delhi including leader of opposition BJP in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley were stunned into silence when a young man spoke of the contradiction in the stand taken by the Centre on Kashmir situation.
“We often hear you saying Kashmir is integral part of the country. Then why does not the rest of the body feel the pain of the hand when it is put in the frying pan? Why are we showered with bullets when we protest peacefully?,” Tariq Ahmad Lone asked the delegation leaders.

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