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PM Modi accepted our memorandum for political solution in Kashmir: Omar Abdullah

He said the Prime Minister agreed with the delegation that development alone is not an answer to the crisis.

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New Delhi: On August 22, 2016, Opposition parties from Jammu and Kashmir led by Omar Abdullah Monday called on PM Narendra Modi and appealed that a political solution needs to be adopted for resolving the present issues in the Valley and to ensure that the “mistakes” of the past are not repeated.

Emerging after a 75-minute-long meeting, Omar, former Chief Minister of the state, told reporters that the Prime Minister listened to “us with patience and accepted our memorandum.”

The 46-year-old Working President of National Conference said they requested the Prime Minister for finding a political solution to the Kashmir issue so that a lasting peace is ensured in the state as well as the country.

Narendra Modi. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

“We talked about the same thing that we have been talking with other leaders ever since we arrived in Delhi that the issue of Jammu and Kashmir, especially in light of the present crisis, needs to be understood correctly after which a solution is required.”

We emphasised that the issue of Jammu and Kashmir is more of political in nature. Time and again such situations do arise but if we are unable to find a political solution to it, we will be repeating our mistakes again and again,” Omar told reporters after the meeting.

He said the Prime Minister agreed with the delegation that development alone is not an answer to the crisis.

“The Prime Minister told us in categorical terms that development alone will not resolve this problem,” he said and refused to draw any conclusion from that.

“I am not going to put words into the Prime Minister’s mouth nor am I going to draw further meaning from what he said,” Omar said.

The delegation apprised the Prime Minister of the ground situation in the Valley which continues to remain under curfew for last 45 days.

Besides Omar, the delegation – comprising a seven-member team of state Congress led by its PCC chief G A Mir, CPM MLA M Y Tarigami, eight-member team of main opposition National Conference including its provincial chiefs Nasir Wani and Davinder Rana — has been camping in the national capital and meeting political leaders from the government and opposition.

Asked about the statement made by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Jammu yesterday that stone-pelters were no “satyagrahis but aggressors”, Omar said “I do not wish to say anything on this as the Prime Minister told us nothing like this.

“And more importantly, let’s not play politics over Jammu and Kashmir. We will get ample time to play political games later.
Omar said he was not in the national capital to score any political points. “I am not heartless that when my people are getting killed daily, I will play politics. Our motive is to break the cycle of death and find a long-term solution to the problem.”

The delegation submitted a memorandum to the Prime Minister, expressing “its anguish, grief and sorrow over the painful loss of lives in the Valley” and to express “dismay at the lack of a political approach to deal with the situation.”

The delegation apprised the Prime Minister that the tried and tested formulations of dealing with the issue in Kashmir administratively rather than politically have further exacerbated the situation and “created an unprecedented sense of disaffection and disenchantment – especially among the youth.

“We are of the firm opinion that the central government should waste no further time in initiating a credible and meaningful political dialogue with all stakeholders to address the unrest in the state,” the memorandum said.

The delegation said, “continued failure to address the unrest in Kashmir will further deepen the sense of alienation” and hoped that the Prime Minister “will take immediate measures to address this grave situation.”

“We hope that our efforts will bear some fruits. We are not here to complain about anyone but have come with a request that if our suggestions are heeded to, it will have a positive impact not only on Jammu and Kashmir but in the entire country,” he said.

Omar said “we all should learn from our mistakes. I learnt it in 2010 (agitation) and so should others. The problem is that we tend to believe that we have learnt from our past mistakes and then, more or less, become complacent.”

The memorandum requested the Prime Minister to announce “an immediate ban on that have caused grievous injuries in the current unrest and maimed and blinded many young boys and girls”.

The leaders flagged the issue of youths falling victim to the continued protests, including a young teenager named Irfan who was killed last night when a teargas shell hit him on his chest.

“We also implore you to announce an immediate ban on pellet guns and advise relevant quarters against the policy of mass harassment, raids and arrests as this has worsened an already volatile situation in the State and also goes against the values and principles of democracy,” the memorandum said.

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Asked about the Centre’s position on Pakistan-occupied- Kashmir, Omar said, “This question should be put to the PMO or Ministry of External Affairs. I am here to talk about my people in the state.”

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The delegation started the political initiative on Saturday when it met President Pranab Mukherjee and submitted a memorandum, requesting him to use his office to influence the Centre for initiating a political dialogue with all stakeholders in the state.

Yesterday, the delegation met Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi and apprised him about the situation in the state (IANS).

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Cho Ramaswamy: The Man Who Wore Many Hats

Cho Ramaswamy won several accolades and awards during his career as an entertainer and as a journalist.

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Cho Ramaswamy was undoubtedly one of the most prominent indian Personalities. Twitter
Cho Ramaswamy was undoubtedly one of the most prominent Indian Personalities. Twitter

By Ruchika Verma

  • Cho Ramaswamy was a multi-talented man who ventured into acting, directing, journalism and politics
  • He was very close to late CM of Tamil Nadu, Jayalalithaa for whom he acted as a philosopher and guide
  • Cho Ramaswamy was very vocal about his criticism of politicians and unethical practices

Srinivasa Iyer or Cho Ramaswamy was an Indian film actor, director, magazine editor, political satirist, and a lawyer. He was born on 5th October 1934 and was one of the most prominent Tamil personalities in India.

Cho Ramaswamy's magazine Tughlak has a huge fan following. Twitter
Cho Ramaswamy’s magazine Tughlak has a huge fan following. Twitter

He was the man of many talents who passed away at the age of 82 on 7th December 2016. Cho Ramaswamy the founder and editor of the Tamil magazine Thuglak, was also a recipient of the prestigious Padma Bhushan award, for his contributions in Literature and Education.

Cho Ramaswamy undoubtedly was one of the most prominent personalities in the southern Indian politics. Here are few things about his life which you may not have known before:

How his career started 

Cho Ramaswamy was first and foremost a lawyer by profession, being born in a family of lawyers. He later branched into theatre, films and finally into journalism and politics.

Cho Ramaswamy won Padma Bhushan for his contribution in the field of Literature and Education. Facebook
Cho Ramaswamy won Padma Bhushan for his contribution in the field of Literature and Education. Facebook

He got into the theatre while he was still practising law. His work as a satirist was very much appreciated. His most famous drama is  ‘Muhammad bin Tughluq,’ it was so brilliant that it became a classic.

He ventured into journalism and founded his own magazine Tughlak, which was mainly focused on the local social and political issues. It was widely and highly appreciated for its satirical and honest views on the politicians and politics. He was fearless in his criticism of the governments.

He later got into politics and was a member of Rajya Sabha from 1999 to 2005. He openly went against Jayalalithaa, when she was at her most powerful, even though she was very close to him. He even predicted Narendra Modi as India’s Prime Minister, long before BJP even declared him as a candidate. He was a true visionary in all senses.

Cho Ramaswamy and Jayalalithaa 

Cho Ramaswamy and Jayalalithaa were one pair of friends whose relationship went beyond friendship to a plane where not all can reach. Jayalalithaa debuted as a child actress with the YG Parthasarathy drama troupe where Cho Ramaswamy was already a star. They worked together in 19 films.

Cho Ramaswamy was Jayalalithaa’s greatest friend but also her most vocal critic. It was the only who was consulted in the matters of Jayalalithaa’s political career by herself and by the star-politician MGR. He acted as her friend, philosopher and guide in films as well as in politics.

The late Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa was extremely close to Cho Ramaswamy. Twitter
The late Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa was extremely close to Cho Ramaswamy. Twitter

You may also like: Iron Lady of India: Jayalalithaa was an inspiration for Women

It is being said many times that the late Tamil Nadu chief minister and AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa once told Ramaswamy that he has to live till she is alive. Interestingly, Cho Ramaswamy died barely 36 hours after Jayalalithaa died. According to doctors who were treating him, before he was put on the ventilator, he watched the live coverage of Jayalalithaa’s body lying in state at Rajaji Hall, Chennai.

There is only one instance of discord between the two, during 1996-2001, where he became a staunch critic of Jayalalithaa because of her unethical ways as a Chief Minister. However, as she mended her ways, he warmed up to her again.

Cho Ramaswamy not only influenced Jayalalithaa’s professional life as an actress and politician, but also her personal life. She considered him her and guide and consulted him before all major decisions.

Ramaswamy and his achievements 

Cho Ramaswamy won several accolades and awards during his career as an entertainer and as a journalist. Apart from being awarded a Padma Bhushan, he also won B.D. Goenka award for excellence in journalism.

Cho Ramaswamy was also famous for his closeness with various prominent politicians, including Narendra Modi. Twitter
Cho Ramaswamy was also famous for his closeness with various prominent politicians, including Narendra Modi. Twitter

His achievements were not only limited to awards. His achievements went beyond that. His association with prominent political leaders like Jayaprakash Narayan, L.K. Advani, Chandra Shekhar, G.K. Moopanar, Jayalalithaa and Narendra Modi, and his role in influencing some of their decisions are noteworthy.

Also Read: Need more Satire and Humour to build bridges between Communities and Societies, says PM Narendra Modi

His achievements as a playwright and actor are also noteworthy. Many of his plays went onto becoming national hits. And he received critical acclaim for his acting as well as his stints as a director.

Perhaps, one of his biggest achievement was the fact that he took many roles throughout his life and ended up successful in all of them. He was indeed the man who wore many hats, and managed to balance them all equally well.