Peace in Kashmir Valley prerequisite for good Indo-Pak ties: Mehbooba Mufti

| Updated: Oct 21, 2016 22:17 IST

Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir) [India], Oct.21 (ANI): Peace in Kashmir is a prerequisite for good relations between India and Pakistan, said Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Friday. Mufti was speaking at Police Commemoration Day Parade in Srinagar. "Then (Pervez) Musharraf had assured him (former Indian PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee) that he wouldn't allow Pakistani territory to be used by for militant activities against India. He kept his promise. As a result, there was peace on our border, infiltration fell in this region and dialogue process began. Unfortunately, the process was broken. If we want good relations between our country and Pakistan, we will have to improve the situation here," said Mufti. Kashmir is in the middle of one of its worst unrest since July 8, following killing of militant leader Burhan Wani by security forces. At least 80 civilians have been killed and thousands wounded in over three months of clashes between protesters and security forces. Normal life Kashmir Valley has been crippled for 105 days straight amid a shutdown call given by separatists against Wani's killing. Mufti also appealed for calm to protesters. "Peace in Jammu and Kashmir is imperative for dialogue to begin because we can't force somebody to talk by using gun, stick or by pelting stones," Mufti added. The separatists, who accuse the Indian security forces of using excessive force, have repeatedly extended their shutdown call. The current shutdown programme is scheduled to last till October 27. India has long accused Pakistan of backing militant groups operating in disputed Kashmir, as well as of sending fighters to other parts of the country to carry out acts of violence. However, Pakistan denies the allegations. (ANI)