Srinagar: As street continues to buzz with political gossip in Indian Kashmir ahead of US president Barrack Obama’s four day visit to India, common man continues to have divided opinion regarding what would be in store for Kashmiris during the much hyped visit starting 6th of this month.
While some believe Kashmir issue will feature during Obama’s visit to New Delhi, other reckon Kashmir issue wouldn’t find any space when US president shares table with Indian prime minister, Manmohan Singh and company.
US president is coming to India at a time when Kashmir has witnessed one of its high voltage summers with 111 civilian killings allegedly at the hands of police and paramilitary in anti- India protests spearheaded by Syed Ali Shah Geelani led Hurriyat (G) in line with its ‘Quit Kashmir’ campaign.
While talking to Agence India Press, Mukhtar Ahmad Dar, a Post Graduate student says, India believes that this high profile visit of US president would be one for Kashmiris to pin hopes on as recent events have put Kashmir Issue back on World’s political map.
“His (Obama) couldn’t have come at the better time than this with the loss of 111 civilian killings in Kashmir coupled with valley wide protests for last four months. Kashmir has to feature in his talks with New Delhi,” reckons Dar adding that the US and other powers in the world must put pressure on India to resolve the Kashmir issue as per aspirations of its people.
Off late, US has advocated bilateral dialogue-between Pakistan and India, but pro-freedom parties are leaving no stone unturned to impress upon the US to change its Kashmir policy seeking its mediation in resolving the 63 year long issue.
While Mirwaiz Umar Farooq led moderate Hurriyat (M) has started a state wide signature campaign, Hurriyat (G) has vowed to intensify protests in the buildup of Obama’s visit.
Mohammad Ashraf, a shopkeeper in Batamaloo told Agence India Press that, if one goes by Obamas election campaign in which he vowed to resolve Kashmir issue, then one should expect him to discuss the issue in India.
“I feel he will discuss Kashmir issue with India as he pledged to resolve the issue in his election campaign. One should expect a lot from his visit,” says Ashraf.
For Hilal Ahmad, a driver, it hardly matters whether it was the US president or other country as he reckons Kashmiris have been left on its own.
Hilal says, “World hardly cares about what is happening in Kashmir. Had that been the case then 111 civilian killings were sufficient for world’s big powers to impress upon India to stop human rights violation and civilian killings in India.”
Some people in Kashmir believe India being the big market for most of the big countries including was acting as a big hurdle for them to take India on regarding Kashmir issue.
Mudasir Maqbool, a social worker, minces no words in putting his expectations forward.
“No he won’t discuss Kashmir with India. It is as simple as that,” says Mudasir, “we all know India is a big market for the US and it one supplies it with a huge IT manpower.”
K-word is what Kashmiris want on Obama’s lips when he shares table with his counterparts in New Delhi but you never know what would be there in store for Kashmiris during his much talked visit to India.
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