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No solution to Kashmir crisis?

[dropcap]M[/dropcap]anohar Parrikar equated Pakistan with hell, the statement came day after the Prime Minister mentioned Balochistan in his Independence Day address. Parrikar said Pakistan keeps trying despite terrorists being killed. They have been supporting terrorism. Now, they are facing the consequences of that support. However, these leaders are ignoring that our country is also not at peace and an internal issue has created unrest. We are celebrating 70 years of our Independence, governments come and go, and always keeps changing but none have had guts to give befitting reply to Pakistan except Indira Gandhi. Last 70 years of leniency on high moral ground has resulted in Mumbai Serial Blasts, 26/11Mumbai attacks, Pathankot attacks, stone throwing on Army officers and killing of Kashmiri Pandits. From day one, PM Narendra Modi is trying to initiate talks with Pakistan at various levels. It is foolish to think that  Pakistan, which gives shelter to global terrorists like Osama Bin Laden, Mulla Omar, Taliban Quetta Shura, Mulla Mansour, Hafiz Saeed will be amenable to talk and keep its word. Both countries spend an enormous portion of their resources on their military confrontation. The only cause for several decades of confrontation is the unsettled status of Kashmir. As a consequence of this confrontation, the people of Kashmir are denied the basic human rights to control their lives in freedom and democracy. One thing is clear that the Kashmir conflict is not a border dispute or a debate over secular or theocratic government. It is about the fundamental human rights of the Kashmir’s people to decide their own future.

India and Pakistan belong to the world’s poorest countries, where more than half of the population do not have adequate food supplies, shelter, clothing and basic healthcare. Prime Ministers have often used the Independence Day speech to answer threats and provocations for Pakistan. Atal Bihari Vajpayee, famously addressed Pakistanis directly from the ramparts of the Red Fort in 1999, when he called them to realise the folly of the Kargil war and of terrorism being fomented in camps on their soil. During Manmohan Singh’s tenure, the August 15 speech frequently contained references to Pakistan’s policy of promoting terrorism in Kashmir. In the past few weeks, Pakistan’s government has willfully abandoned all diplomatic ties to advocate international intervention in Kashmir. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has led the way, writing to UN organisations, decreeing a “black day” across Pakistan to honour slain Hizbul Mujahideen ‘commander’ Burhan Wani, and giving wanted terrorist leaders, such as Hafiz Saeed, a free run to hold protest rallies against India. The atmosphere was visibly vitiated by the Pakistan government’s shabby treatment in Islamabad given to Home Minister Rajnath Singh, who faced protests during a SAARC meet earlier this month. Pakistan’s High Commissioner to Delhi, Abdul Basit, escalated matters by dedicating Pakistan’s Independence Day, on August 14, to fight “jihad in Kashmir”.

Talk is a softer method and is ancient. Pakistan believes and an act upon the promise that India cannot adopt military option. Pakistan has the nuclear capabilities. Internationally, it won’t be supported. Indian political parties will always adopt partisan view, not a nationalistic view and if you look at our country, we may realise that the Indian patriotism is marked by selfish interests. Kashmiris of both sides are being subjugated at the hands of respective armies. Government needs to act swift and take appropriate action. We should not forget if Kashmir is ours, even the people of Kashmir are Indian citizens, take them in confidence and provide adequate security to them.

The region of Jammu & Kashmir is a Muslim-dominated state with a sizable minority population. Its last Hindu king chose to join India in 1947 as the British left India. The newly created Pakistan wanted the region as it was Muslim dominated. Since then, both nations have used force to make their point clear. As both nations want it equally badly, both nations are nuclear powered and the state is a rich source of water and strategically has advantage. There is a stalemate. In theory, these princely states had the option of deciding which country to join, or of remaining independent. In practice, the restive population of each province proved decisive. Because of its location, Kashmir could choose to join either India or Pakistan. Maharaja Hari Singh, the ruler of Kashmir, was Hindu while most of his subjects were Muslim. Unable to decide which nation Kashmir should join, Hari Singh chose to remain neutral. However, his hopes of remaining independent were dashed in October 1947, as Pakistan sent in Muslim tribesmen who were knocking at the gates of the capital Srinagar. Hari Singh appealed to the Indian government for military assistance and fled to India. He signed the Instrument of Accession, ceding Kashmir to India on October 26 Instrument of Accession (Jammu and Kashmir). Since then, the conflict has not ended. People are killed, women raped, Hindu-Muslims are at unrest, army too is targeted. Several times, political parties and government changed, but Kashmir issue remains the same, and perhaps much worst.

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Dr Vaidehi Taman
Dr Vaidehi an Accredited Journalist from Maharashtra is bestowed with Honourary Doctorate in Journalism, Investigative Journalist, Editor, Ethical Hacker, Philanthropist, and Author. She is Editor-in-Chief of Newsmakers Broadcasting and Communications Pvt. Ltd. for 11 years, which features an English daily tabloid – Afternoon Voice, a Marathi web portal – Mumbai Manoos, monthly magazines like Hackers5, Beyond The News (international) and Maritime Bridges. She is also an EC Council Certified Ethical Hacker, Certified Security Analyst and is also a Licensed Penetration Tester which caters to her freelance jobs.

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