Srinagar, May 31: Former RAW Chief A S Dulat Sunday said that it is high time to start “political process” in Kashmir and the “people or the leaders” should kick-start the process in Kashmir, adding that Hurriyat Conference (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq has a big role in dialogue.
“I am of the belief that there is no leader taller and bigger than Dr Farooq Abdullah in Kashmir. Then Mirwaiz Umar Farooq has a big role in dialogue. It’s not that he doesn’t know what to talk and how to talk. He knows what to talk and on what issue to talk, he has talked before also,” Dulat, who is also known for his track-two diplomacy in Kashmir, told news agency KINS, in an exclusive chat over phone from New Delhi.
He said talks are must to take place and talks should be held with former chief ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti as well. “Talks should be held with Sajad Gani Lone too. He too has a role,” Dulat said.
Asked whether New Delhi was going to start any dialogue process, Dulat said that not Delhi but Srinagar must take a lead. “Srinagar walay baat karnay chahiye (people or leaders from Srinagar must talk,” he said. “Altaf Bukhari is already talking and that’s good.”
He said that once Syed Salahudin spoke to him on a television show by chance and stated that “he has no role.” “I told him ajaaw, role milega (Come you will get a role),” the former RAW chief said.
To a query about whether reports that Altaf Bukhari would be next chief minister of J&K, Dulat said that legally there is no way where Altaf can be a chief minister in present circumstance. “To be a chief minister, one has to fight elections,” he said.
Dulat, however, didn’t rule out the formation of advisory council headed by Altaf Bukhari, the Apni Party chief. “Advisory Council can take place,” he said.
About National Conference’s decision of staying away from the Delimitation exercise in J&K, Dulat said that it is a decision taken at the party level. “What should I say on this? It must be a call taken by Dr Farooq sahib, Omar Abdullah sahib,” he said.
The former RAW chief while replying to a query whether security situation had improved in Kashmir post Article 370 roll back, said: “At times it seems that the situation has improved a lot but at time, it looks like it has not. I reiterate that there is a need for a political process,” he said (KINS)