Omar calls for resumption of India-Pak dialogue

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah unfurled the national flag at the Bakhshi Stadium here amid tight security. Addressing the gathering, he urged the Union government to resume the dialogue process with Pakistan for strengthening the peace process and cross LoC trade between Jammu and Kashmir and PoK.

However, the chief minister did not mention about the Kashmiri separatists in his speech. Interestingly, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, in his Independence Day speech, stated that the recent polls in Jammu and Kashmir had demonstrated that separatist ideology had no place in the state.

In his Independence Day message on Friday evening, he favoured a dialogue between the separatists and the Central government, saying his government was keen to facilitate such a process. The chief minister apologised for the mishandling of the Shopian rape and  murder case. He demanded a review of the Indus-Water Treaty, signed by India and Pakistan in 1960, in view of the changing circumstances. He said Jammu and Kashmir was at a disadvantage with regard to the treaty.

Meanwhile, normal life was paralysed across Kashmir on Saturday due to the separatist-sponsored general strike.

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