Kashmir will remain an integral part of India: Athawale

Ranchi: Union Minister of State for Social Justice Ramdas Athawale today lashed out at the separatists for refusing to talk to the all party delegation in Jammu and Kashmir, describing their approach as “not good”.

“Kashmir, which is an integral part of the country, will not run on the directives of Pakistanand will remain an integral part of India,” Athawale told reporters after he, along with Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Thawar Chand Gehlot and JharkhandChief Minister Raghubar Das launched the ‘Sugmya Bharat’ (Accessible India) campaign here.

“There is no question of freedom of Kashmir, which became an integral part of Indiafollowing Independence from the British rule,” he said.

Referring to the refusal of separatist leaders to meet the all party delegation led by Home Minister Rajnath Singhrecently, Athawale said such an approach was “not good”.

“It is not wrong to understand the feelings of separatists,” Athawale said replying to question about some members of the delegation deciding to meet them.

However, he said it was not proper on the part of the separatists to return the delegation empty handed.

“No political party of the country supports separatist activities in the Kashmir Valley,” Athawale said adding, no one would believe if they talk of Kashmir’s Azadi (freedom).

“Development of Kashmir and employment can be demanded, but no one will talk of separation from India,” he said.

“The people of Kashmir will have to think it seriously that Pakistanis pitching our youths against our Army and police,” he added.

Despite terrorist activities in the Valley, he said the turn out in elections was 70 to 75 per cent, indicating people’s faith in the democratic system.

The MoS emphasised the need for development of Jammu And Kashmirfor the betterment of the people of the state.