SWABI: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Shah Farman has said that Pakistan has been striving for reconciliation among all warring factions in Afghanistan for the last several decades.

He was talking to journalists at the residence of Senator Liaquat Khan Tarakai where he met Shahram Khan Tarakai, provincial minister for local government, and other members of Tarakai family on Saturday night.

The governor said that peace in Afghanistan was vital for maintaining a peaceful environment and achieving dream of progress and prosperity in the entire South Asia because Kabul enjoyed a unique position in the whole region.

Shah Farman says Kabul enjoys unique position in South Asia

He said that as compared to other countries of South Asian region, Pakistan was immediate neighbour of Afghanistan and the turmoil in Afghanistan greatly affected Islamabad.

Answering a question about Kashmir, Mr Farman said that Indian leadership took the issue to UN Security Council and later the world body adopted resolutions, calling for plebiscite in the disputed territory.

“The UN has given right of self-determination to Kashmiri people and the resolutions advocate for referendum, asking Kashmiris whether they want to join Pakistan or India,” he said.

“In fact, the right of self-determination is right of Kashmiris and it would remain intact till implementation of the resolutions. Pakistan is ready to work according to the UN resolutions,” said the governor.

Atif Khan, provincial minister for tourism, said that protests against the repealing of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution held across the country and people fully backed the struggle of Kashmiris.

“Actually we work on a plan to expose India and its brutal tactics across the world,” he said, adding that they also wanted to expose the Indian leaders’ claim of “big democracy” in the world. “In fact there is no democracy in India,” he added.

Mr Atif said that if India’s claim of normal situation in the occupied Kashmir was true then the Indian government should lift curfew and show to the world.

Meanwhile, a controversy prevailed about the governor’s visit to Tarakai House. It was claimed that the visit was meant to normalise relations between the governor and Mr Atif.

When asked, Mr Atif said that it was just a get together because there were public holidays and they had not met for the last several days. “No political issue was discussed during the meeting,” he said.

However, his relative Salman Wali said that relations between the governor and Atif Khan were not normal and Shahram Khan arranged the dinner to reconcile the two heavyweights of PTI.

RALLIES: Two separate rallies were held here on Sunday to support Kashmiri people against the Indian atrocities.

The first rally was held by Anjuman-i-Dokandaran in Gohati. The participants of the rally were holding placards and banners inscribed with different slogans against India.

The second rally was organised by students of different colleges and schools that started from Quaid-i-Azam School and culminated at Shahmansoor judicial complex.

The participants of the rally said that it was responsibility of UN to play its role and implement its resolutions.

Published in Dawn, September 9th, 2019