Dineshwar Sharma visits Baramulla

Dineshwar Sharma visits Baramulla

Trade groups, Bar Association boycott meeting

Arshad Farooq

Baramulla, Dec 27: A day after his visit to frontier district of Kupwara, Government of India’s Kashmir interlocutor Dineshwar Sharma Tuesday visited Baramulla amid tight security. He met 36 delegations from various areas of district Baramulla at Dak Bungalow Baramulla, an official said.
Official sources said that the delegations took up wide range of issues with Dineshwar Sharma, from unemployment, harassment of youth by law enforcing agencies, lack of basic amenities in their areas, underdevelopment and the prevailing situation in Kashmir.
Representatives of mainstream political parties PDP, AIP and Youth Congress, college students from various degree colleges of Baramulla district, youth representatives, minority communities both Sikh and Pandit delegations met Dineshwar Sharma and put forward their views before the interlocutor.
Earlier Bar Association Baramulla and trade federations abstained from meeting Dineshwar Sharma claiming the interlocutors meet with civil society as a ‘futile exercise’.
President Beopar Mandal Baramulla Mohammad Ashraf Ganaie said that traders don’t have the mandate to talk on Kashmir issue, so there is no issue of meeting him.
“People have given us mandate to work for the welfare, development and betterment of trade community in particular and Baramulla in general. All the prominent traders in one voice appeal to state and central government including the appointed interlocutor to initiate talks with Hurriyat leadership and other political groups at highest level in order to resolve Kashmir issue once for all. Kashmir is a political issue and not a developmental and unemployment issue,” he said.
Meanwhile, President Bar Association Baramulla Abdul Salaam Rather said that Bar will also not meet the interlocutor as it is a “futile exercise”.
Sharma, a former IB chief, was appointed as Special Representative by Government of India in October this year formally to hold and carry forward “sustained dialogue” with all stakeholders in Jammu and Kashmir. The Valley’s apex separatist leaders, civil society members and traders have so far stayed away from holding any talks with Sharma.