LAHORE - Speakers at a seminar stressed the need for working out a strong national policy on Kashmir with the input of all stakeholders and implementing the same with consistency and rising above political interests.

They said at the seminar organised by Pakistan Institute of National Affairs (PINA) yesterday.

They said Kashmiris in the Indian Held Valley through an indigenous struggle are writing a new history with their blood against the unprecedented barbarity of the Indian forces.

“Kashmiris can achieve their right to self determination much easily now if Pakistan is able to forcefully plead their case at the international level that they are struggling for the implementation of the resolutions which the UN had committed to implement in 1948 to hold plebiscite in the Valley,” they held.

PINA Secretary General Altaf Hassan Qureshi in his welcome address shed light on the current gory situation in Held Kashmir and said, it is time to tell the world what Kashmiris stand for today. He said Kashmir struggle in fact, is for completion of the unfinished agenda of 1947 about division of India.

Altaf Hussain found link between the Quetta terror attack and Indian policy to curb Kashmir struggle, and said the aim of the attack is to destabilise Pakistan to desist it from going ahead with CPEC.

Senior media man Sajjad Mir performed moderator while former Secretary Foreign Affairs Shamshad Ahmad Khan presented key note address, among the speakers namely MNA Ijazul Haq, Hurriyat leader, Ghulam Muhammad Safi, political analyst Lt-Gen (retd) Ghulam Mustafa, chairman SOCH Muhammad Mehdi, MPA Dr Farzana Nazir, columnist Hafizullah Niazi, Dr Akram Ch, intellectual and poet, Amjad Islam Amjad, Qayyum Nizami, Irshad Arif, JI leader Farooq Chohan, and Dr Akram Ch.

The speakers dominantly perceived absence of a solid Kashmir policy approved by the parliament and lack of political consensus on the same. They had serious reservations over the Kashmir committee of the National Assembly finding it totally failed to deliver.

The speakers said head of the committee had no interest with Kashmir outside his personal interest as such the dire need is to replace him to make the committee active to plead Kashmir cause at the international level.

Shamshad Ahmad Khan said Pakistan had a Kashmir policy rooted in UN resolutions for the grant of right to self determination to the Kashmir till Kargil debacle and later the policy completely diluted during the Musharraf era out of internal weakness and military rulers preference to frame policies in his own interest than the national ones. He said succeeding rulers of the PPP and the PML-N disserved Kashmir policy even the worst which emboldened India to put Kashmir to the backburner. But today Kashmir issue has again been stirred up with unmatched spirit by the Kashmiris after martyrdom of Burhan Wani and a situation has been created that Pakistan cannot stay in isolation.

Shamshad said the situation demand that personal business interest with India must not dominate the national policy on Kashmir. Lying stress on changing the attitude of people corresponding with the pulse of the ongoing movement of Kashmiris, he called for a change in the attitude of the rulers in the first instance.

He said the dynamics of foreign policy at present stand changed as such an internally strong country commands much say in the world about its policies which unluckily was not available to Pakistan which has become a security state out of internal flaws.

Shamshad Khan said: “If Pakistan has to get Kashmir and let its voice heard at the international level, the paramount need is to become economic power and intelligent use of strategic location so that the world could feel its weight.”

Ijazul Haq in his address emphasised the need of setting up a committee of all political parties and framing a state policy on Kashmir so that a common narrative is built to highlight the issue and to seek world help to resolve the issue cutting it off the strings of bilateralism.

He said today Kashmiris are identifying themselves with Pakistan which may lose the case on the Valley if it failed to stand up for them, while India in turn, would manage to dub Kashmir movement as terrorism.

Ijaz said new generation should sensitized about Kashmir issue and called for moving the Contact Group of OIC on Kashmir and erasing the negative narrative which the world has created about JuD and JI on their leaning to Kashmiris. Kashmiri community in UK and US and other states should also be activated to highlight the current situation in Held Valley apart from whipping up diplomacy.

Gen (retd) Ghulam Mustafa called for shunning internal differences to stand up united for Kashmir. He said it is needful the world should be brought home why Indian is occupying Kashmir and how necessary emancipation of Kashmiris is from its yoke in the larger global interest. He said staunch movement of Kashmiris at present is making both Pakistan and India irrelevant and decision making authority is drifting to Kashmiris themselves.

Pakistan, he said, has severely damaged its Kashmir policy. And it needs to establish its credibility before playing a role in the matter.  He said Pakistan must frame policy with the mind that its ideological status is incomplete without Kashmir.

Muhammad Mehdi speaking on the occasion called up the all political parties to adopt a single stand on Kashmir and also wanted the writers to present situation in the Held Valley in its true ideological perspective to let the people kwow what Kashmiris actually want. It is needful that affairs on Kashmir are streamlined, he added.