Partition of the Sub-continent and Kashmir
The Kashmir dispute between Pakistan and India is a territorial conflict since the partition of the sub-continent in 1947. Both countries have fought three wars over Kashmir conflict. The Indo- Pakistani wars of 1948, 1965 and Kargil war of 1999. Yet the dispute still remains today.
The state of Jammu and Kashmir should have been a part of Pakistan after the partition because of its geographical conditions and Muslim majority population but instead, Indian military assistance was sought by the Maharaja Hari Singh who backdated signed the ‘instrument of accession’ with India and hence the Kashmir dispute have remained an issue ever since. This conflict had also kept the security of South Asia at stake because both India and Pakistan are nuclear powers.
Kashmiris’ have been denied any right of self-determination by India. India has had a history of being violent on Kashmiris’ and today the situation has deteriorated that the people of Kashmir live with a fear as nobody knows if their loved ones would return home safely. Anyone who stands for their right to freedom has been removed from the way by the Indian army. Freedom, for Kashmir, is a search for the lost identity of its rich cultural & religious class of the medieval world.
After the martyrdom of Burhan Muzaffar Wani last July they entered into a new phase when the youth of Kashmir took charge of the ‘Intifada’ in their hands. And this fresh blood took this whole moment to the next level. This resulted in a brutal reaction by the Indian forces which include the use of palette guns and recent incidents of braid chopping of Kashmiris’ women are some of the worst examples of human history.
On the other hand,India is not allowing any foreign media or even UN military observer group to get access to the burning valley. And to cover up all these inhumane acts India is trying to burn the flames of war at the eastern border. India by using its monitory channels/huge market kept on forcing the USA to act against Pakistan. The recent statements given by Donald Trumpon Afghan policy and its possible repercussions for Pakistan is the classic example of Indian involvement in the Afghan issue as well and an attempt to divert the world’s attention from Kashmir.
Furthermore, there has been repeatedly unprovoked firing at the line of control by the Indian army. They have been desperately trying to divert attention from the inhumane acts on the Kashmiris’ by the Indian forces and the unprovoked firing is just a diversion. To highlight this situation Pakistani prime minister addressed the issue in the UN General Assembly, Maliha Lodhis speech in the UNGA and Chief of Army Staffs clear warnings to the Indians are examples of how Pakistan responded to the situation. Now the ball is in India’s court. They can save the lives of billions of people in the region. They just have to change their mindsets.
The aggressive policies of Indian PM Narendra Modi are adding to the difficulties for India itself. The policies of current Indian government have been criticized by Indian politicians and international analysts. India is taking advantage of being a big trade market as the international community has its vested interests in India. The Indian government is increasing its defence budget every year and involved itself in an arms race that will destabilize the balance of power in the region.
The United States is supporting India without any regard to instability in the South Asian region. The US has its own interests as it is selling modern technology, arms and weapons to India in order to counter China in the region. Pakistan has strongly condemned Indian violation at LoC but our restraint and tolerance should not be considered as our weakness.
* BS International Relations, University of London