Today on the Independence Day of Pakistan, President Mamnoon Hussain on Kashmir Issue said:
On the day of Independence we make it clear that Pakistan will continue to support their Kashmiri brothers on political, diplomatic and moral grounds. We will pursue the solution of Kashmir issue on the basis of UN Resolutions.
With due respect I want to ask the president and all the fellow nationals of Pakistan, what is he talking about? What is Pakistan doing for Kashmir cause especially for the last decade.
Let’s take a trip down to history to know what actually happened.
15 Aug 1947 British India was divided into two Pakistan and Union of India with the decision of Kashmir’s accession to either side still hanging in the balance. Afraid that the Maharaja might decide the future of a Muslim majority state against their will ( India or self-governance ) the Kashmiris started a rebellion against the Maharaja forces.
The fight wasn’t centralized till the start of October. In the first week of October leaders of these local clans gathered and re-launched the rebellion on a larger scale but still on their own for the next three weeks.
In the last week of October tribesmen from NWFP and FATA joined and started capturing more land. Meanwhile the Chitral’s accession to Pakistan was finalized and Gilgit Scouts re-enforced them.
Maharaja Hari Singh realized that he wouldn’t be able to control the state any longer so he signed the Instrument of Accession joining the Dominion of India in return for military aid on 26th of October. This allowed India to legally intervene Kashmir against the wishes of public and they sent their armed forces where as Pakistan’s Army Chief General Douglas Gracey denied the orders of Governor General of Pakistan Muhammad Ali Jinnah on the pressure of Field Marshal Claude Auchinleck. Pakistan’s last resort was to supply arms and ammunition to the fighters.
Thousands of men, women and children from the rebellion were killed and raped because they lacked the skill and expertise of Indian Army as compared to their losses. A ceasefire took place on 13th August 1948 after UN intervened and formulated a resolution on April 21 1948 which both “freedom fighters in Kashmir” and the “Indian Army” accepted although it was negotiated between the Pakistan and India. This created a ceasefire line later known as the “Line of Control” in the area.
Now lets come to the political post-Jinnah version of Pakistan.
The UN Resolution (Link), President of Pakistan was talking about and all other politician use in their speeches demanded the following before the right of plebiscite being given to Kashmiri people.
Yes you guessed it right. Never in the last 68 years our political leaders enacted on their responsibilities which would lead to a plebiscite for Kashmiris however the use the name of Kashmir and UN Resolution in every speech to gain sympathy.
India is a so called secular state which has unleashed the gruesome acts of violence under the Armed Forces Special Power Act ( AFSPA) which sanctions any armed solider of India to kill anyone he deems to be a militant with full immunity from prosecution. The section 4 of the Act states :
4. Special powers of the armed forces.- Any commissioned officer, warrant officer, non-commissioned officer or any other person of equivalent rank in the armed forces may, in a disturbed area,-
(a) if he is of opinion that it is necessary so to do for the maintenance of public order, after giving such due warning as he may consider necessary, fire upon or otherwise use force, even to the causing of death, against any person who is acting in contravention of any law or order……
But what have we done? In 1972 Pakistan signed the Simla Agreement which turned the cease-fire line ( sometimes termed as a hot volcano ) to Line of Control which made United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan insignificant as their sole mission was to monitor the cease fire line which was now termed unalterable.
(ii) In Jammu and Kashmir, the line of control resulting from the ceasefire of December 17, 1971, shall be respected by both sides without prejudice to the recognized position of either side. Neither side shall seek to alter it unilaterally, irrespective of mutual differences and legal interpretations. Both sides further undertake to refrain from the threat or the use of force in violation of this line.
That was a great push-back. After the Kargil war a lot was expected from ex-President General Musharraf who came up with a 4 point solution of Kashmir which was unarguably one of the best solutions possible. But by removing any third party mediator during the process, he hinted that UN or any other country’s help isn’t needed.
After Musharraf the PPPP government appointed Mualana Fazl-ur-Rehman ( a person with almost zero knowledge of the sensitivity of the issue ) as the Minister for Kashmir Affairs and the issue was once again pushed back from agenda for years to come.
Using the Pakistan’s insensitivity and Musharraf’s motto that the issue can be resolved between these two countries, India was able to silently get the issue of Kashmir removed from the UN disputes list. Yes you read it correctly
Kashmir hasn’t been mentioned in UNSC issue and America has declared it to be internal issue of India since 2010.
Moving forward who doubt that with the current relations between the premiers of both countries any good is expected for the Kashmiri people.
What are we promising to them? Is this the political and diplomatic support Pakistan has done for them. Are we defending them? Are we helping them? Are we trying to liberate them?
Those in occupied Kashmir are being tortured and butchered by thousands in the name of Pakistan but on every 14th August they raise the Pakistani flag with out caring for their life and the lives of their loved one in the hope that one day the Pakistan will free them the oppression of India. This year they have raised more flags than they have in the last 5 years. What should I say to them? How would they feel when they find this out?
Do our politicians have an answer for this? Do we as a nation have an answer for them?
Photo Credits :- Kashmir Observers – 14th August 2016