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HOPE OF THE CENTURY - Kashmir will be part of Pakistan, hopes Nawaz (Dawn)

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    HOPE OF THE CENTURY - Kashmir will be part of Pakistan, hopes Nawaz (Dawn)

    Kashmir will be part of Pakistan, hopes PM

    By Ashraf Mumtaz

    SHEIKHUPURA, July 26: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Monday expressed his optimism that occupied Kashmir would soon become a part of Pakistan. "A day will come soon when occupied Kashmir will become a part of Pakistan," he said while addressing the ground-breaking ceremony of the Hiran Minar interchange at the Lahore-Islamabad motorway, a few kilometres away from here.

    This was probably the first time that the prime minister himself raised the slogan of "Kashmir Banay Ga Pakistan" (Kashmir will accede with Pakistan). A few thousand people present on the occasion repeated the slogan several times.

    The prime minister put aside his written three-page speech and spoke extempore for about nine minutes. He cut short his speech possibly because of the thin attendance.

    Mr Sharif said journalists might be expecting that he would abuse Jamaat-i-Islami Amir Qazi Husain Ahmed and Millat Party President Farooq Leghari for their utterances against him. However, he said, he would not do so. Instead, he said he would pray that may Allah guide them.

    Qazi Husain and Mr Leghari had issuedstrongly-worded statements against the prime minister for what they called a wrong policy on Kashmir and Kargil.

    Mr Sharif defended his policy, saying he did only what he deemed was in the supreme national interest. He also asked the audience whether they honestly believed that his Kashmir policy was right. The people raised their hands to express their approval.

    The Hiran Minar interchange will be completed at a cost of Rs 40 million in four months. A new four-lane road will be constructed to connect the interchange with the Hiran Minar and later linked with the Sheikhupura-Sargodha road.

    The prime minister also approved an interchange at Khanqah Dogran for the convenience of the people.

    Mr Sharif said the government had approved a Rs 25 million project to renovate the Hiran Minar and restore its original beauty.

    He said the Hiran Minar was in no way less beautiful than Lahore's Shalamar Gardens but because of the neglect it was in a dilapidated condition.

    Communications Minister Raja Nadir Pervaiz highlighted the importance of roads for the development of a country. He said the motorway would serve as "Suez canal" for Pakistan and its benefits would be better realised by the future generations.

    He appreciated the prime minister's Kashmir policy, saying the Kargil operation had internationalized the Kashmir issue more forcefully than ever before in the past. The government had established to the world community that a durable peace in the region would not be possible till the solution of the Kashmir dispute.

    He said it was the result of our diplomacy that today the entire world was pressuring India to hold talks with Pakistan for the solution of the Kashmir problem.

    MNA Begum Khurshid Mahmood Khan asked the prime minister to order supply of Sui gas to her constituency. The prime minister said he would issue necessary instructions for the purpose.

    Governor Shahid Hamid and some MNAs and MPAS were also present at the ceremony.

    Owing to some indiscipline, the police baton-charged some of the participants.

    Kashmir will become part of Pak within the next 8 years - my instinct.

    Fata Morgana


      Keep trying...Good Luck...Atleast everybody has the right to hope.