Govt, BJP feel Pak has changed strategy on Kashmir

Last Updated: Fri, Aug 06, 2010 12:38 hrs
Curfew across Kashmir Valley

New Delhi: Though they may disagree on ways to deal with the Kashmir imbroglio, the government and the Opposition BJP on Friday appeared to be on the same page as far as the role of Pakistan in the problem is concerned.

Home Minister P Chidambaram agreed with the BJP that Pakistan appeared to have changed its strategy by fomenting more civilian unrest rather than the militant activities.

Kashmir: Is this restraint?

"Pakistan appears to have altered its strategy...It is possible there is altered strategy. It is possible they believe on relying on civilian unrest that would pay dividends," he told Rajya Sabha, responding to clarifications sought on his statement on Kashmir unrest made on Wednesday.

He was referring to the spate of stone-pelting incidents in Kashmir that are being witnessed for the last two months.

Chidambaram's statement came after Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitley said there was a "significant change in the strategy" by Pakistan's ISI and various agencies across the border.

Earlier, in a memorandum to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday, an NDA delegation led by senior BJP leader L K Advani said the separatists, at the behest of Pakistan, had "adopted an alternative strategy".

"They (Pakistan) have realised that the global acceptability of acts of terror has ceased to exist. They are also aware that India's patriotic and professional security forces can repel such terrorists and insurgency linked sabotage, blast and violence," the memorandum said.

"Their strategy is to convince the world about the so-called justness of Kashmir's cause," it said, adding the separatists are getting instructions from across the border.

"From young school children to women and elders stone throwing at security forces and governmental buildings is the preferred strategy. They indulge in mob violence in order to provoke the security forces to resort to defensive action," the memorandum said.

While agreeing on this aspect, the government and Opposition had divergent views on ways to address the problem.

The BJP wanted abrogation of Article 370 which grants special status to Jammu and Kashmir. This, however, was rejected by Chidambaram.

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