Srinagar, Jan 19 Moderate Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq today expressed concern over the loss of lives in heavy mortar shelling on either side of the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir, saying the soldiers from both the sides becoming “cannon fodder” was a consequence of the unresolved Kashmir issue.
Two civilians and a BSF jawan were today killed and 23 others, including 2 BSF men, were injured in heavy mortar shelling by Pakistan, along the International Border, in three districts of Jammu and Kashmir.
“Each day, civilians, including children, on both the sides of the LoC are being killed and are becoming the target of the unresolved Kashmir conflict, which is very sad and painful,” he said.
“The soldiers also become cannon fodder of this hate as a consequence of the lingering Kashmir dispute,” the Mirwaiz told a Friday congregation at the Jamia Masjid here.
He said that these soldiers, on either side, belong to the poor segment of the society and join the forces to make a living and support their poor families.
The Hurriyat chairman said it was strange that both India and Pakistan boast of killing each other’s soldiers and swear to avenge the deaths, which leads to more killings and destruction.
“This senselessness and bloodshed is given the name of nationalism and defence of national honour,” he said.
The Mirwaiz appealed to India and Pakistan to end these killings.
“The only beneficiaries of this death and destruction are those who provide the arms and ammunition for this mayhem,” he added.
The Hurriyat chairman urged the two nuclear neighbours to give up confrontation and come to a dialogue table to resolve the Kashmir dispute.
On the 29th anniversary of the exodus of the Kashmiri Pandit community from the Valley, the Mirwaiz appealed to them to return to their roots.
The Mirwaiz said the migration of the Kashmiri Pandits was a human issue and it makes all the “Kashmiris sad that they are away from their motherland and yearn to come back”.
“Kashmir belongs to them as much as it does to Muslims and we want to share our future together,” he said.
The separatist leader said that the demand for the right of self-determination was for each inhabitant of Jammu and Kashmir as they have an equal right to have their say in its future dispensation.
“On the call of the joint resistance leadership (JRL), a joint platform of separatist outfits, a peaceful protest was held outside the Jamia Masjid against the state terrorism and tactics adopted by the NIA and Enforcement Directorate,” Mirwaiz said.
The protesters denounced the allegations against the Hurriyat leadership filed in NIA charge sheet, he said.