Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front chief Yasin Malik and Hurriyat Conference leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said on Thursday the unilateral ceasefire during Ramzan that the Centre had announced the previous day was a “cosmetic measure”.

The Ministry of Home Affairs said on Wednesday that it had asked security forces not to conduct operations in Kashmir during Ramzan. This is being widely read as a ceasefire.

Ramzan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar, when Muslims fast from dawn to dusk to commemorate the first revelation of the Quran to Prophet Muhammad. It began on May 16 and will end on June 14.

“Until and unless a comprehensive plan is made to resolve the Kashmir problem, these cosmetic things won’t work,” Malik said at a seminar, Greater Kashmir reported. “This is a cosmetic measure. Will it make any difference on the ground?”

“We need to find the root cause of the conflict and the reason why youth are taking to arms,” Farooq said. “We need to address the dispute.”

Farooq added that that shutdowns in Kashmir were a “compulsion” for the Joint Resistance Leadership – an alliance of top separatist leaders in Kashmir – but that it was trying to find alternatives.

The Hurriyat Conference leader also claimed that the Indian government had decided to “force the people of Kashmir to surrender”, and asked them to unite to resist the “all-out operations of New Delhi”.