Posted by: Administrator | 8 January, 2005

President Musharraf’s Address on Kashmir Solidarity Day

6 February 2006

President AJK Mr. Anwar, PM AJK Sardar Sikandar Hayat Khan, Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed, 10 Corps Commander Salahuddin Satti, all the ministers, Senators, MNAs, Sardar Qayyum, members of AJK Assembly and ladies and Gentlemen.

Assalamualikum I am very happy that I am again addressing you in such a big rally on the day of National Solidarity. I have come here in Muzaffarabad before as well to address you a few years back but today it is an honor for me to address such a big rally. This day is especially significant as this is first day of National Solidarity which is taking place after 8 October Earthquake so first of all I would like to talk about dealing with this catastrophe which we were faced with was a dilemma.

And like AJK PM and President told us and also when I came the next day after the earthquake I was also upset that how will we be able to deal with such a big catastrophe and loss, with so many people injured and martyred, with so many houses destroyed. I was extremely upset but I had the will in my heart that InshAllah we will fight this and show the people of Pakistan as well the people of the world that how such a catastrophe and disaster is managed when the nation, the leadership and the army is united. First of all I would like to pay tribute to the whole nation, where everyone from Karachi to Khyber got involved with sorrow and pain in his heart, that people on their own drove out on the roads, got hold of trucks loaded them with stuff and reached the area and started distributing everything. This was the spirit of the Pakistani nation it was unity which brought them here.

Secondly I would like to pay tribute to the army, whenever Pakistan is under threat from anything, this army comes forward and I would like to appreciate them as their commander but more than that as the President. For the first time it has happened that I have come from out of country tour I went to Davos Switzerland where leaders of the world were present, where the media of the world was present, I gave interviews to at least 21 to 22 medias of the world, each person and every NGO who was there, every leader is full of praise for the army and they say that the performance which Pakistan army has shown in Pakistan, examples of such are not available in the world. This was their duty to show this performance and it is your right to demand from them to serve you and I am honored that I am their commander.

Then I would like to pay tribute to the NGOs who came to Pakistan from all over the world from thousands of miles away, they had their charistmas and New Year festivals, I called all the commanders in Aiwane- Sadar and I thanked them for their service after coming from far away areas after leaving behind their houses and families just to help you.

I feel sorry when people of some elements abuse and accuse them; float wrong rumors like NATO has come to take over the entire country. Is it some kind of joke that anyone can come and take over such a big country with population of 156 million, are we that weak that 1000 people can come and take over and it is a sorry state that people who wants to really help us are abused and wrong this way so I would like to thank all NGOs, international communities, all UN organizations specially Mr. Kofi Annan who has personal involvement here up till even now.

Even when he met me in Davos he asked about the progress of the work and how can he help us further. Now when I came here after fully analyzing I feel that a lot of improvement has come in the situation, relief operation has progressed in a good manner and to a large extent reconstructions of houses on help yourself basis is also being progressed with a lot of help from the army.

This all became possible when we devised a strategy immediately and according to that strategy we created organizations of FRC and ERRA and after that we saw that we do not have the resources so we called a Donors Conference seeking resources after opening a President Relief fund, we appealed throughout the world and in Pakistan and I am honored to tell that each Pakistan whether he was in Pakistan or abroad these Pakistanis donated wholeheartedly in the Relief Fund more than 6 to 7 billion rupees.

From the international community, representatives from 85 countries came to Pakistan on our call, we needed 5.2 billion dollars but through this Donors Conference 6.5 billion dollars were pledged by the people of the world. We initiated the relief operation which progressed and will keep progressing in the best of manners InshAllah. When it came to shelter, medical aid, food and water all were taken care 2 of. Most difficult task was of shelter and of providence of tents; we thought 5 lakh tents would be enough but I can say with pride that when we appealed to the whole world and it was this NATO force which were constantly criticized, helped us and transferred tents from all over the world to Pakistan so today 8.5 lakh tents instead of 5 lakh were delivered with 2.5 lakh shelters already constructed.

For future I would like to tell that a lot of work is still to be done, major work in fact is yet to be done and thus we cannot sit at ease, my promise to you is that we will turn this challenge into an opportunity though of course we cannot bring back the martyred but I would like to assure you that the places which have been destroyed would be reconstructed InshAllah in a much better form. In the reconstruction all kinds of comfort will be catered to the people who lost their houses will be given 2.45 Lakh rupees which will soon be distributed and then the people will be guided to construct earthquake proof houses, secondly all educational and health institutions will also be reconstructed not just those which were destroyed in the earthquake but according to the need, we will InshAllah create modern facilities.

A proper study is being done by ERRA, samples are being looked into and InshAllah this will become a reality. I would like to tell you that we have already distributed 12 billion rupees among you, among the earthquake affectees but now we will distribute 80 billion rupees for the reconstruction of the houses and in AJK approximately 40 billion rupees will get generated and that too within this year in coming few months apart from additional money would be spent to improve school system, education and health system which is going to be approximately 80 Billion Rupees. So the total money which will be spend on Kashmir is going to be around 125, 00 billion rupees.

After this money is invested here in Kashmir and if we, AJK government and all of you do this work honestly then I don’t have a doubt in my mind that this place will come out wonderfully, everywhere where the earthquake struck e.g. in Muzaffarabad, housing, schooling, health system will not only improve but would be in modern lines. Apart from that the government structure needs to be focused like we are looking for a new place for the Secretariat and district headquarters so they can be constructed according to a new beautiful pattern so that when the place will be vacated in Muzaffarabad, this city can further be developed beautifully.

I promise you all of the progress and I will stay involved in this project myself and will personally supervise it and I promise that I will always be with all of you InshAllah. The only regret is that some political parties and political people who use this as a political tool and do not understand that this is a national catastrophe and one should help the government, the nation and the army. Such politically motivated abuse the army on media that it is not doing anything, they are sleeping, these people also criticize government, they don’t know that when I went to Geneva and Davos, they specially asked me of how the earthquake was managed so well and I lectured 500 people of the world who were sitting in front of me how this catastrophe was handled and faced so today the situation is such that people are listening to us and learning from us of how to manage such a catastrophe. When I was addressing, a woman stood up and I am honored to tell you that she said you have set such an example that in case of any catastrophe the people only need to follow your step wise formula without following any other and new procedure.

This is the status of Pakistan with God’s will so I would only like to tell those politically motivated people, what is happening in the world and what is world saying. We have discussed about earthquake. Today is solidarity day, the Kashmir solidarity Day. It is my duty to speak to the large audience about solidarity day. The first and the most important thing which I have to repeat again and again because there are some people who spread rumors. I am going to tell you that Kashmir runs in Pakistan’s veins and my veins, in my blood veins so it can’t be forget.

We will find the solution. We will do anything possible to resolve it. We will do everything and won’t forget it. This is my belief, promise and faith. Those who spread rumors are same who are spreading rumors about earthquake. You just believe me as I told you Kashmir is running in my veins and we will not leave it InshAllah. It is not like previous governments, they also talked and still talking from foreign. These are those people who erase the name of Kashmir house as Indian Prime Minister visited. The other person is the one, when I was a chief in 1991 and Mr. Vajpayee came on bus service, there were going to sign the declaration, I was also present there.

The word of Kashmir does not exist in the draft of declaration. As I was sitting there so I pointed out that what sort of declaration we are signing, a joint statement which don’t have the world Kashmir in it. The answer I got was that the draft won’t be sign if we add the word Kashmir and I told them to add the word we don’t have any relation with statement. It is their will to sign it or not. So any way we leave this and what has to done for future.

I want to pay 3 tribute to Kashmiris who have suffered a lot especially who live near LoC. They scarificed their lives and blood and many are martyrs, suffered pain, I pay tribute to these people because of these people Kashmir cause have gone this further. Secondly to those who have participated in freedom struggle in IHK, who have struggled for freedom, Sardar Qayyum onward whoever participated in freedom struggled, I would like to pay tribute to each and every one because of them this is going further.

Thirdly I would like to pay tribute to arm forces of Pakistan, whether it is Siachen or Kargil, LoC or wars they have scarified for this country and for Kashmir cause. They have sacrificed for the Kashmir cause and this country I pay tribute to them. Kashmir is in the limelight. The European leaders all are talking about Kashmir. It is all because of the struggle of the nation fighting for their freedom and the struggle of Pakistan forces. Now the world thinks that it is a flash point that needs to be resolved. I want to say that it is mine as well the duty of all other leadership to increase the focus of the limelight. I have been saying this all to the leaders to raise their voices against it we want to listen to what you have to say. You may say this to both India and Pakistan to resolve the Kashmir dispute because I have told this to everyone that unless Kashmir issue is resolved there can not be peace in this region.

PM Manmohan Singh has made some announcements on the 2nd the most important of them was that he has said in his statement that Kashmir resolution is important and to talk to Pakistan is very important now I would like to pay tribute to him I recognize him that this is the first time he has clearly talked about theses things I want to assure him that I myself and Pakistani Govt want to see the resolution of Kashmir that is acceptable to the Kashmiri nation as well. I would be with him as long as he is willing to move forward with sincerity.

I want to assure them that we will move forward with them and InshAllah we will find solution to Kashmir. There was a time when there was need of war of freedom; the military action has created a environment based on which we can find resolution of Kashmir politically now is the time to find political resolution of the Kashmir issue. I have been appealing this to the world and InshAllah you will also see how the world will support it. I appeal to India as well that the way forward for friendship between India and Pakistan is through confidence building measures and dispute resolution and the Kashmir dispute is the biggest dispute in dispute resolution. Unless the dispute resolution is not taken forward the confidence building would not be possible I would not let this happen and it is not possible as well. It is my appeal to the Indian leadership to take advantage of the present situation.

The quake has raised a spirit of unity among both sides of the line of control but it also created spirit in India it is occasion that the leadership must take advantage to move forward toward peace so I hope that we will be able to move forward. There are many doubts regarding Pakistan’s agenda I want to repeat it in this gathering that our agenda is the same as before the right of self determination and plebiscite for the Kashmiri people. I have shown flexibility to the extent that if the India wants to show any flexibility then the joint suggestion acceptable to the people of Kashmir to the Pakistan and India as well. In that regard if they are willing to move forward then we are also willing to take step forward otherwise our original agenda is the same as it was before.

We have declared ceasefire in November 2003 to create an environment of peace because I know when I use to meet the people in the FDLs they use to be in very pain it was for their rest and it is still going on. We have presented a suggestion of bus service that bus service has started from Srinagar to Muzaffarabad in my eyes it is for the Kashmiri people not for anyone else. it was our suggestion after the quake to open 5croosing points to allow people to meet with each other. I suggested opening it and anyone who wants to come for help must be allowed but they didn’t allow it the crossing points are opened but I my intentions are not fulfilled yet. We are also suggesting truck service to resolve the trade problem of the Kashmiri brothers and sisters there and they can develop socially now I have also suggested the demilitarization and self governance the area must be demilitarized people are fed up of the situation army sitting in the bunker with guns in their hands the innocent unarmed civilians are being killed. so it must be ended the area must be demilitarized the army must leave the area the start can be taken from Srinagar Baramulah and Kuppwara the armies can be taken outside the cities to facilitate the people in the big cities and no constitutional amendment is required in this case but just an administrative order is required there is no danger if it doesn’t work they can come back.

I don’t talk through press media I have given them in writing 8months ago I talk to them eyes to eyes and I have told them everything but when the situation does not go forward then I talk in media and I will continue to do so. These wee our suggestions and I 4 hope that the Indian leadership will seriously consider it since it is not only in favour of Pakistan Kashmiri nation but in favour of Indian nation as well it is in favour of this region. South Asia which is lacking behind can have trade and commercial activity if there is peace and then the regions will economically rise. The leaders must have understanding of the consequences so in the end I appeal to all Indian leadership to understand the sensitivity of the situation and move forward we are with you if you want to move forward with good intentions.

The President and the Prime minister have informed me of the schemes regarding electricity, loans, writs off loans and also the new interest free loans I assure you that I will look into it and we will take decision in your favour. I want to assure you that there will be no solution of Kashmir that is not acceptable to you so I will assure your approval that Allah show right path to you, me and every leadership so that we can resolve the issue of Kashmir in the best possible manner. I thank you all for sitting here for hours.

The Kashmiri nation, Azad Kashmir and the Kashmiri nation of the Indian held Kashmir Zindabad Pakistan Paindabad.

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