Bilawal raises doubts over govt’s sincerity with Kashmir cause

Updated August 14, 2019

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Raising doubts over government’s sincerity with the Kashmir cause, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has said the government is “not supporting the Kashmiris in an effective way”. — DawnNewsTV/File
Raising doubts over government’s sincerity with the Kashmir cause, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has said the government is “not supporting the Kashmiris in an effective way”. — DawnNewsTV/File

ISLAMABAD: Raising doubts over government’s sincerity with the Kashmir cause, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has said the government is “not supporting the Kashmiris in an effective way”.

Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday, he said the government’s decision “not to move the United Nations Security Council” on the Kashmir issue and sending Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi to Azad Jammu and Kashmir (on Eid day) in place of PM Imran Khan had exposed its “insincerity” with the Kashmir cause.

The PPP chief said Indian PM Narendra Modi and PM Khan were on the same page as both were bent upon tyrannising people. “Modi is committing oppression and tyranny in Kashmir while Imran Khan is doing so against the opposition in Pakistan.”

Pakistan would have to send a clear message to the Kashmiris that every Pakistani was with them at this difficult time and the nation was ready to go to war if needed for the Kashmir cause, he said.

He expressed concern over the foreign minister’s recent remarks that many countries would not support Pakistan over the Kashmir issue in the UN Security Council. “We should not stop ourselves from filing an application in the UN Security Council by assuming that there will be some opposition in the world body.”

Mr Bhutto-Zardari said the PTI government wanted to divide the people of Pakistan by antagonising the opposition. “The government has started arresting even women leaders belonging to the opposition,” he deplored.

“Faryal Talpur was sent to Adiala jail at midnight from the hospital where she was being treated and the doctors had advised her treatment in a cardiology hospital. The law says that no one can be sent to prison from hospital after 5pm, but Faryal Talpur was forced to go to prison at midnight.”

The government, the PPP leader said, had sent Ms Talpur to prison from hospital when he was in Azad Kashmir to offer Eid prayers with Kashmiris and his father was in jail. Besides, he added, the government was also aware that the next morning was Eid day when there would be no newspapers. “This proves that the tyrannical PTI government does not want one voice for Kashmiri brethren.”

The PPP chairman said that whenever he met Kashmiri activists and journalists, they asked him whether the prime minister was also “involved in conspiracy” against the Kashmiris.

He said the recently held joint session of parliament had been convened on PPP’s demand and when the opposition went to AJK to show solidarity with the Kashmiris, the government also sent its representative (foreign minister) there.

Replying to a question, he said his family would file a petition against sending Faryal Talpur to prison.

He said the government was taking action against Amnesty, NYT and the BBC which were raising voice for the Kashmiris. About urban flooding in Karachi, he said a propaganda campaign had been launched against the Sindh government, but it was also a fact that the city had received record rains this year.

Published in Dawn, August 14th, 2019