'Kashmiris want to forget past, move ahead for peace'
Srinagar:The youths of Kashmir want to forget the past and move ahead in search of peace and better life, a peace activist, who claims to have walked from Kanyakumari to the Valley, said today.
"The Kashmiri youths who we met during our short stay here want to forget the past. They want bygones to be bygones and move ahead in search of peace and better life," Mumtaz Ali told reporters after the conclusion of his 474-day 'Walk of Hope' which started from Kanyakumari in Tamil Nadu.
The 67-year-old said "average Kashmiri" people were good, but needed help, love, and affection to move forward.
"Our message is peace and unity of humanity," he said.
The peace activist, who claims to have met over 10 lakh people during his 7500-km march through 11 states, said he would like to visit Kashmir again and meet the youths from interiors of the city which often witnesses violent protests.
"Violence is not a solution to any problem. All issues can be resolved peacefully by understanding each other," he said.
Ali said the antidote to Kashmir's problems lies with its people, adding no one can bring solutions from outside.
Contrary to warnings about the situation in the state, Ali said he and his group have been welcomed by people from all walks of life.
"This walk is not the end of the mission. There will be follow up to it to find out where we can help," he said.
The first edition of the Walk of Hope covered states like Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana, Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir, he said.
"The walk we completed did not include eastern and northeastern parts of our nation. The next edition is envisaged to start from Kanyakumari and proceed along those areas," he said.
Ali said his mission was apolitical and he has not taken any funding from the corporate houses.
"It is the small contributions by people that has made this mission possible," he said.