Friday, May 25, 2012

M Yusuf Buch, a Pakistani expert involved in the Kashmir dispute right from the start has dubbed his country's stand as "unsound" stressing that these resolutions have "no importance at all."

M Yusuf Buch, a Pakistani expert involved in the Kashmir dispute right from the start has  dubbed his country's stand as "unsound" stressing that these resolutions have "no importance at all."

3 June 2000

From Jal Khambata

NEW DELHI: In a stunning blow to Pakistan always relying on the two UN Security Council resolutions on plebiscite in Kashmir as the bedrock of its case, a Pakistani expert involved in the Kashmir dispute right from the start has dubbed his country's stand as "unsound" stressing that these resolutions have "no importance at all."

The expert is 74-year old M Yusuf Buch, whose opinion gains an immediate relevance in the context of Pakistan angrily reacting to External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh's assertion in a CNN interview on  May 31 that the UN resolutions required Pakistan to withdraw all its troops from Jammu and Kashmir for other "necessary actions" to follow.

The News, an independent English daily of Pakistan, says: "For those who may not know or may have forgotten, there is no greater authority on Kashmir than M Yusuf Buch who has been involved in it from the very start. Since 1953, barring the five years that he was in Pakistan as Zulfiqar Ali Bhotto's special assistant, he has been at the UN. Every major speech made on Kashmir from the '50s through the '70s (from Pakistan side) has had an input by Buch, if not entirely his work. His knowledge of Kashmir at the UN is encyclopaedic and his insights original. It is, therefore, important to know what his thoughts on Kashmir today are. Buch is just 24 years older than the Kashmir dispute."

Buch was asked where do the Security Council resolutions on Kashmir stand today? His reply:

"The UN Security Council resolutions have no importance at all. To date, the counsil has accepted 1,100 resolutions, out of which only two are important, both passed under Chapter 7, while Kashmir and the rest of the 1,100 were passed under Chapter 6 which does not oblige the council to take action."

When reminded that Pakistan's entire stand consists of the Security Council resolutions being implemented, Buch remarked: "This demand is unsound. When we make this demand, we are told that the Security Council has passed 1,100 resolutions. What is so special about those involving Kashmir. ...As for the resolutions, they are no more than non-binding recommendations."

Buch was referring to the two Security Council resolutions passed under Chapter 7 of the UN charter, resulting in the UN's intervention in case of the liberation of the island of East Timor from Indonesia and in another dispute between Yugoslavia and Italy settled in favour of Italy through a referendum.

He went on to explain: "The real thing is not these (Kashmir) resolutions but the international agreement which formed the basis of these resolutions. Not all Security Council resolutions were passed with the consent of the contending parties. The resolutions on Kashmir were passed with the consent of India and Pakistan and thus they are in the nature of an international agreement."

Pakistan's Foreign Office has dug out a report submitted to the UN Security Council by Sir Owen Dixon, the UN representative for India and Pakistan on September 15, 1950 to assert that it were India and not Pakistan that had derailed the UN resolutions for solution to the Kashmir dispute.

The Dixon report had concluded: "In the end, I became convinced that India's agreement would never be obtained to demilitarization in any form or to provisions governing the period of plebiscite of any such character as would, in my opinion, permit the plebiscite being conducted in conditions sufficiently guarding against intimidation and other forms of influence and abuse by which the freedom and fairness of the plebiscite might be imperilled."

While Pakistan's Foreign Office asserts that the Security Council resolution adopted on December 23, 1952 did not call for complete demilitarisation as it provided for "between 3,000-6,000 armed forces remaining on the Pakistani side and 12,000-18,000 remaining on the Indian side of the ceasefire line," Buch points out that the plebiscite was derailed by Pakistan itself by objecting to India being allowed to station more troops than Pakistan and did not agree to the suggestion of Graham, who was to conduct the exercise as the UN administrator, that this question could be taken up after all arrangements for a plebiscite were in place."

Moreover, Pakistan lost its case for plebiscite soon thereafter by joining the US security pacts and then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru was quick in asserting that these alignments had changed the situation. Buch says: "Nehru found a lot of world support for this stand, in the same way as Nawaz Sharif found it for his agreement with Vajpayee. Pakistan's Prime Minister Muhammad Ali Bogra called Nehru his elder brother and Nehru took advantage of this and Kashmir was consigned to the cold storage."

Buch also points out how Pakistan blundered again in 1965. "If we had taken advantage of the Chinese ultimatum and continued the war for some time, perhaps in six months a plebiscite in Kashmir could have taken place."

His particular stress on treating the two toothless UN Security Council resolutions of 1949 and 1952 as "international agreements" shows how they got superseded once India and Pakistan signed fresh agreements. He is particularly critical of the Tashkent accord which he is convinced should not have been signed because while the 1965 war was in progress, France initiated a move in the Security Council that after cessation of hostilities, an effort should get underway to settle all disputes between India and Pakistan. "Tashkent overtook that initiative which remained stillborn," says Buch.

Going by his argument, the latest agreement that superseded all previous agreements is the Simla agreement signed between Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and Indira Gandhi and if Pakistan wants to modify its position, it should enter into negotiations with India, the other party. So far, both India and Pakistan vow to abide by the Simla agreement which prohibits any third party intervention and as such Pakistan has been only breaching this agreement by words and deeds by repeatedly harping on the UN resolutions which are now deadwood and calling for the third party intervention to resolve the Kashmir dispute.

Buch also blames Pakistan for sabotaging the "freedom movement" of Kashmiris. He blames Ziaul Haq for having placed the Jamaat Islami at the head of the Kashmir resistance movement, whereas it was the Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front which had really fought for freedom. Buch's regret is that "the Jamaat liquidated leading JKLF figures, men who were legends in Kashmir."

While India has allowed the ban on JKLF to lapse early this year, the JKLF's supreme commander Amanulla Khan was lying under detention in a Pakistan prison since last year after he advocated an end to militancy by transfer of both Jammu and Kashmir and the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir to the UN trusteeship for 15 years and India and Pakistan jointly taking care of the region with regards to defence, currency and external affairs for these many years before conducting a plebiscite to decide the fate of Kashmiris.

Amanullah Khan, who is out of the Pakistan jail after long detention, continues to criticise Pakistan for sabotaging what he describes as Kashmiris' "liberation movement." He was quoted by The News stating that "Pakistan-based militant organisations are a big threat to the identity of Kashmir and have damaged the ongoing liberation movement." Regretting that the presence of foreign militants in Kashmir has projected the Kashmir movement as a terrorist movement, he said only Kashmiris can resolve the present crisis in the valley.

In a related article in another Pakistani daily, Nation, Brig. (retd) A R Siddiqui has quoted from an out-of-print book "Danger in Kashmir" written by Josef Korbel, the then Chairman of the UN Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP). Korbel, an ethnic Czech who had immigrated to the United States in the late '50s, is father of the US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. The book shows how Korbel got frustrated in his efforts to the extent that he had even ruled out the possibility of the plebiscite ever. In his book, Korbel writes: "...the Commission reluctantly not only abandoned the prospect of any immediate ceasefire arrangement, but alas and even more discouraging, began to doubt the possibility of ever being able to arrange an impartial plebiscite." END

Thursday, May 24, 2012

National Panthers Party reject the report of the Union Home Minister released today in the name of Interlocutors.

National Panthers Party

New Delhi, 24th May, 2012
Press Release
                 Prof. Bhim Singh, Chairman-NPP and Member-NIC described the report of three-Musketeers (the so-called Interlocutors) as another fraud by the Home Minister of India with the nationalist, secular and oppressed people in J&K. This report has been made public to divert the attention of the people and the press from the rising anger of the people against the Price Hike of Petrol.
                 Three-Musketeers were sent to Kashmir in a conspiracy to sterilize the ground situation in Kashmir to save Omar Abdullah from the wrath of school going stone pelters who were fed up with his computers fiddling. It is shocking that over 50 crores of rupees were wasted for the pleasures of three-musketeers only to develop eyewash blinding powder which they failed to do.
                   NPP Chief said that the report submitted by the Interlocutors has insulted and disgraced the souls of Sheikh Mohd. Abdullah, Afzal Beg and another who signed the final documents with the Govt. of Ms. Indira Gandhi which dumped the autonomy demand into the graveyard and Sheikh Abdullah gladly reconciled to be the Chief Minister. That was the end of the so-called autonomy jargon. The Interlocutors attempt to please Chidambaram and Abdullahs in demanding to constitute a special Constituent Committee to consider all the post 1953 laws promulgated in J&K is a challenge to the integrity of J&K as part of the Union.
              The so-called report is loaded with anti-Jammu and anti-Ladakh bias and full of discrimination against the people of Jammu Pradesh and Ladakh. In other words the report is anti-Jammu Pradesh, anti-Ladakh, anti-Pakistani refugees, anti-POK refugees, anti-refugees of 1965 from Chhamb and that of 1971. It is anti-Jammu migrants from Poonch, Rajouri, Doda, Reasi, Kathua who have been languishing in the stinking and starving camps in spite of the judgments of the Supreme Court to provide them adequate relief. NPP Chief said the report is coloured in communal bias prompted by NC as it willfully chose word, ‘pluralism’ instead of ‘secularism’. This is for the knowledge of the national leaders that word’ ‘secularism’ has been omitted deliberately in the J&K Constitution.
               The NPP Chief described the recommendation of three-musketeers to set-up regional councils in Ladakh, Kashmir and Jammu Pradesh as another gimmick with the people. NPP Chief regretted that the Interlocutors had completely ignored the most popular and acceptable demand for Reorganisation of J&K.
               The Interlocutors had deliberately avoided the word, ‘occupation’ vis-a-is POK and described occupied J&K as Pak-administered areas. This was done to please the ISI, the Union Home Minister and Abdullahs.
               In a video conference with the NPP legislators, M/s. Harsh Dev Singh, Balwant Singh Mankotia, Yashpaul Kundal and Syed Mohd. Rafiq Shah and other members of the secretariat Prof. Bhim Singh, the Chairman appreciated unanimous stand taken by JKNPP to reject the report of the Union Home Minister released today in the name of Interlocutors.

Sudesh Dogra, Political Secretary

Monday, April 16, 2012

What ails Kashmir? The Sunni idea of ‘azadi’

What ails Kashmir? The Sunni idea of ‘azadi’
The discomfort Kashmiris feel is about which laws self-rule must be under, and Hurriyat rejects a secular constitution

We know what Hurriyat Conference wants: azadi, freedom. But freedom from what? Freedom from Indian rule. Doesn’t an elected Kashmiri, Omar Abdullah, rule from Srinagar?

Yes, but Hurriyat rejects elections. Why? Because ballots have no azadi option.But why can’t the azadi demand be made by democratically elected leaders? Because elections are rigged through the Indian Army. Why is the Indian Army out in Srinagar and not in Surat? Because Kashmiris want azadi.

Let’s try that again.

What do Kashmiris want freedom from? India’s Constitution.

What is offensive about India’s Constitution? It is not Islamic. This is the issue, let us be clear.

The violence in Srinagar isn’t for democratic self-rule because Kashmiris have that. The discomfort Kashmiris feel is about which laws self-rule must be under, and Hurriyat rejects a secular constitution.

Hurriyat deceives the world by using a universal word, azadi, to push a narrow, religious demand. Kashmiris have no confusion about what azadi means: It means Shariah. Friday holidays, amputating thieves’ hands, abolishing interest, prohibiting alcohol (and kite-flying), stoning adulterers, lynching apostates and all the rest of it that comprises the ideal Sunni state.

Also Read Aakar’s previous Lounge columns

Not one Shia gang terrorizes India; terrorism on the subcontinent is a Sunni monopoly.

There is a token Shia among the Hurriyat’s bearded warriors, but it is essentially a Sunni group pursuing Sunni Shariah. Its most important figure is Umar Farooq. He’s called mirwaiz, meaning head of preachers (waiz), but he inherited his title at 17 and actually is no Islamic scholar. He is English-educated, but his base is Srinagar’s sullen neighbourhood of Maisuma, at the front of the stone-pelting. His following is conservative and, since he has little scholarship, he is unable to bend his constituents to his view.

Hurriyat’s modernists are led by Sopore’s 80-year-old Ali Geelani of Jamaat-e-Islami. Jamaat was founded in 1941 by a brilliant man from Maharashtra called Maududi, who invented the structure of the modern Islamic state along the lines of a Communist one. Maududi opposed Jinnah’s tribal raid in Kashmir, which led to the Line of Control, saying jihad could only be prosecuted formally by a Muslim state, and not informally by militias. This wisdom was discarded later, and Hizb al-Mujahideen, starring Syed Salahuddin of cap and beard fame, is a Jamaat unit. Maududi was ecumenical, meaning that he unified the four Sunni groups of thought. He always excluded Shias, as heretics.

The Kashmiri separatist movement is actually inseparable from Sunni fundamentalism. Those on the Hurriyat’s fringes who say they are Gandhians, like Yasin Malik, are carried along by the others in the group so long as the immediate task of resisting India is in common. But the Hurriyat and its aims are ultimately poisonous, even for Muslims.

The Hurriyat Conference’s idea of freedom unfolds from a religious instinct, not a secular sentiment. This instinct is sectarian, and all the pro-azadi groups are Shia-killers. In promoting their hatred, the groups plead for the support of other Muslims by leaning on the name of the Prophet Muhammad.

Hafiz is a title and means memorizer of the Quran. Mohammed Saeed’s Lashkar Tayyaba means army of Tyeb (“the good”), one of the Prophet’s names. This is incorrectly spelled and pronounced by our journalists as “Taiba” or “Toiba”, but Muslims can place the name. Lashkar rejects all law from sources other than the recorded sayings and actions of Muhammad. This is called being Wahhabi, and Wahhabis detest the Shia.

Jaish Muhammad (Muhammad’s army) was founded in a Karachi mosque, and it is linked to the Shia-killing Sipah Sahaba (Army of Muhammad’s First Followers) in Pakistan’s Seraiki-speaking southern Punjab. The group follows a narrow, anti-Shia doctrine developed in Deoband.

Decades of non-interference by the Pakistani state in the business of Kashmiri separatism has led to a loss of internal sovereignty in Pakistan. The state is no longer able to convince its citizens that it should act against these groups. Though their own Shia are regularly butchered, a poll shows that a quarter of Pakistanis think Lashkar Tayyaba does good work. We think Indian Muslims are different from Pakistanis and less susceptible to fanaticism. It is interesting that within Pakistan, the only group openly and violently opposed to Taliban and terrorism are UP and Bihar migrants who form Karachi’s secular Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) party.

So what do the separatist groups want? It is wrong to see them as being only terrorist groups. They operate in an intellectual framework, and there is a higher idea that drives the violence. This is a perfect state with an executive who is pious, male and Sunni. Such a state, where all is done according to the book, will get God to shower his blessings on the citizens, who will all be Sunnis.

There are three types of Sunnis in Kashmir. Unionists, separatists, and neutrals. Unionists, like Omar Abdullah, are secular and likely to be repelled by separatism because they have seen the damage caused by political Islam in Pakistan. They might not be in love with Indians, but they see the beauty of the Indian Constitution. Neutrals, like Mehbooba Mufti, are pragmatic and will accept the Indian Constitution when in power, though they show defiance when out of it. This is fine, because they respond to a Muslim constituency that is uncertain, but isn’t totally alienated. The longer these two groups participate in democracy in Kashmir, the weaker the separatists become. The current violence is a result of this. Given their boycott of politics, the Hurriyat must rally its base by urging them to violence and most of it happens in Maisuma and Sopore. The violence should also clarify the problem in the minds of neutrals: If Kashmiri rule does not solve the azadi problem, what will?

India’s liberals are defensive when debating Kashmir because of our unfulfilled promise on plebiscite. But they shouldn’t be. There is really no option to secular democracy, whether one chooses it through a plebiscite or whether it is imposed. It is a universal idea and there is no second form of government in any culture or religion that works. The Islamic state is utopian and it never arrives. Since it is driven by belief, however, the search becomes quite desperate.

India has a constitution; Pakistan has editions. These are the various Pakistani constitutions: 1935 (secular), 1956 (federal), 1962 (dictatorial), 1973 (parliamentary), 1979 (Islamic), 1999 (presidential), 2008 (parliamentary). Why do they keep changing and searching? Muslims keep trying to hammer in Islamic bits into a set of laws that is actually quite complete. This is the Government of India Act of 1935, gifted to us by the British.

Kashmiris have it, and perhaps at some point they will learn to appreciate its beauty.

Aakar Patel will take a break from his column to write a book. He will return early next year.

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Saturday, April 14, 2012

कश्मीर और जम्मू-कश्मीर के इस अन्तर को हमेशा छुपाया क्यों गया है

कश्मीर बहुत छोटा है आज़ादी के लिए भूटान के दसवें हिस्से जितने क्षेत्रफल वाले लैंड लाक्ड आजाद देश से न भारत का भला होगा न कश्मीरी मुसलमानों का. कश्मीरियों की यह आम शिकायत रहती है कि शेष भारत वाले कश्मीर और कश्मीरियों को सही से समझते नहीं। किसी हद तक यह सही भी है। कश्मीर के विषय में कई मिथकों में से एक मिथक यह तोड़ने की आवश्यकता है कि कश्मीर भारत का एक उत्तरी राज्य है। जी नहीं, कश्मीर एक राज्य नहीं बल्कि जम्मू कश्मीर राज्य का एक छोटा सा हिस्सा है – 6.98 प्रतिशत हिस्सा। यहाँ तक कि यह कहना भी ग़लत है कि “कश्मीर से कन्या कुमारी तक भारत एक है”, क्योंकि कश्मीर तो भारत का सब से उत्तरी भाग है ही नहीं। वह श्रेय लद्दाख सूबे को जाता है। और यदि भारत का आधिकारिक मानचित्र देखा जाए तो गिलगित और अक्साइ-चिन उससे भी उत्तर में हैं। न लद्दाख, न गिलगित, न अक्साइ चिन कश्मीर का हिस्सा हैं। जिस क्षेत्र को पाकिस्तान आज़ाद कश्मीर कहता है, और हम पाक-अधिकृत कश्मीर, वह क्षेत्र भी दरअसल कश्मीर नहीं है। यह लेख प्रयास है यह बतलाने कि इन अंतरों को समझना क्यों ज़रूरी है, विशेषकर जब कश्मीर घाटी में इतना हंगामा हो रहा है। 

राजनीतिक शतरंज के खिलाड़ियों ने कश्मीर की भौगौलिक स्थिति और सीमाओं को लेकर हमेशा एक भ्रामक स्थिति बनाए रखी। आम तौर पर जब लोगों से पूछा जाता है कि कश्मीर कहाँ है, तो वे कहते हैं, “यह रहा” और भारत के मानचित्र के “सिर” की ओर इशारा करते हैं, जैसा कि ऊपर दिये मानचित्र में काले बाणचिह्न से दिखाया गया है। पर वास्तव में वे सचाई से कोसों दूर हैं। इसी नक्शे में लाल बाणचिह्नों के द्वारा लेखक ने कश्मीर की सही स्थिति और सीमा दिखाई है। ऊपर दिए नक्शे में भारत की सरकारी रूप से मान्य सीमाएँ दिखाई गई हैं, और कश्मीर क्षेत्र को लाल रेखाओं द्वारा रेखांकित किया गया है। यदि आप एक “बाहर वाले” के नज़रिए से देखना चाहें तो विकिपीडिया का दाएँ दिया नक्शा देखें — इसे क्लिक कर बड़े आकार में देखा जा सकता है। कश्मीर घाटी की सीमाएँ इस नक्शे में भी लाल रेखाओं द्वारा दिखाई गई हैं।

आप पूछेंगे कि कश्मीर और जम्मू-कश्मीर राज्य में भला क्या अन्तर है? यूँ समझें कि सारा झगड़ा कश्मीर का है जम्मू-कश्मीर का नहीं। कश्मीर सुन्नी-मुस्लिम बहुल है, राज्य के अन्य भाग नहीं। कश्मीर में “गो इंडिया गो” का नारा लग रहा है, जबकि राज्य के अन्य भाग भारतीय होने में खुश हैं। कश्मीर जम्मू-कश्मीर का एक छोटा सा हिस्सा है। पर कश्मीर की परिभाषा क्या है? अच्छा हो कि कश्मीरियों से ही पूछा जाए। कश्मीरी भाषा में घाटी से बाहर के क्षेत्र को “न्यबर” कहा जाता है, यानी बाहर या परदेस। कश्मीर उस जम्मू-कश्मीर राज्य का एक छोटा सा हिस्सा है, जो जम्मू, लद्दाख और कश्मीर को मिला कर बना है। राज्य के तीन सूबे हैं जिनमें कश्मीर सूबा सब से छोटा है। और इस छोटू ने ही सब की नाक में दम कर रखा है। इस क्षेत्र में केवल तीन जिले थे — अनन्तनाग, बारामुल्ला और श्रीनगर, जिन्हें अब दस छोटे जिलों में बाँट दिया गया है।

इसी छोटे से क्षेत्र ने पिछले 63 वर्षों में इस इलाके की राजनीति पर अपना बोलबाला कायम किया है। कश्मीर और जम्मू-कश्मीर के इस अन्तर को हमेशा छुपाया क्यों गया है, और इस अन्तर को उजागर करना क्यों आवश्यक है? दरअसल राज्य का यही छोटा हिस्सा भारत के लिए दर्दे-सर बना हुआ है, क्योंकि इस मुस्लिम बहुल क्षेत्र ने पूरे राज्य को और पूरे क्षेत्र को अपहृत कर रखा है। राज्य का यह भाग जो राज्य का केवल 7% है, स्वयं को एक गैर मुस्लिम देश का भाग मानने में आनाकानी करता है।

राज्य के दक्षिण में जम्मू है, जो हिन्दू-बहुल है, जहाँ के लोग पंजाब-हिमाचल जैसे हैं, और उत्तर में लद्दाख है जहाँ बौद्ध और शिया मुस्लिम रहते हैं, कुछ कुछ तिब्बत से मिलता जुलता। दोनों क्षेत्रों को भारत का भाग होने में कोई दिक्कत नहीं है। केवल कश्मीर है, जहाँ गैर-मुस्लिमों के पलायन के बाद अब 97% आबादी मुसलमानों की है। यही वह हिस्सा है जो आग का गोला बना हुआ है। वह खूबसूरत वादी, जिसे कभी जन्नत कहा जाता था, और जिसे अलगाववाद ने जहन्नुम में तब्दील कर दिया गया है। इसी क्षेत्र के अधिकांश वासी इस छोटे से क्षेत्र के लिए आज़ादी की माँग कर रहे हैं। इस राज्य की विविधता, भारत की विविधता में तो घुलमिल जाएगी, पर हरे-झंडे ले लेकर पत्थर बरसाते अलगाववादियों के कश्मीर में कैसे चलेगी?

 पाक अधिकृत “कश्मीर” में न कश्मीरी रहते हैं, न वहाँ कश्मीरी बोली जाती है। वहाँ बोली जाने वाली भाषाओं में से एक भी भाषा कश्मीरी से नहीं मिलती जुलती। जाहिर है कि नियन्त्रण रेखा ने किसी परिवार को विभाजित नहीं किया। इस खेल के हर खिलाड़ी के लिए महाराजा हरिसिंह की इस रियासत के ईंट-रोड़े को इकट्ठा रखना एक राजनैतिक मजबूरी रही है — चाहे वह कहीं की ईंट हो कहीं का रोड़ा। जम्मू, कश्मीर और लद्दाख में कुछ भी एक सा नहीं है, सिवाय इसके कि यह तीनों सूबे एक ही राजा के अन्तर्गत थे। हर क्षेत्र की अपनी वांशिकता है, अपना मज़हब, अपनी भौगोलिक स्थिति और प्रवृति, अपनी जलवायु, अपनी संस्कृति और अपनी भाषा। देश में किसी भी राज्य में इतनी विविधता नहीं है।

यहाँ तक कि 1950 के दशक में देश का भाषाई पुनर्गठन तो हुआ पर इस राज्य को नहीं छुआ गया, क्योंकि इसे विशेष स्टेटस हासिल था। भारत शायद इस राज्य को इसलिए इकट्ठा रखना चाहता है कि जम्मू और लद्दाख कश्मीर और शेष भारत के बीच गोंद का काम करें। भारत को लगता है कि राज्य का विभाजन किया तो देश का विभाजन दूर नहीं होगा। पाकिस्तान भी जम्मू-कश्मीर का नाम एक साथ लेता है ताकि वह पूरे राज्य पर अपना दावा ठोक सके और नौबत पड़ने पर शायद हिन्दू क्षेत्रों की सौदेबाजी कर सके।

शायद इसी कारण वे अपने हथियाए हुए इलाके को AJK (आज़ाद जम्मू कश्मीर) कहते हैं, जो न आज़ाद है, न जम्मू है, न कश्मीर है। पाक अधिकृत “कश्मीर” में न कश्मीरी रहते हैं, न वहाँ कश्मीरी बोली जाती है। वहाँ बोली जाने वाली भाषाएँ हैं – पहाड़ी, मीरपुरी, गुज्जरी, हिन्दको, पंजाबी और पश्तो (विकिपीडिया के अनुसार)। इन में से एक भी भाषा कश्मीरी से नहीं मिलती जुलती। इस का अर्थ यह भी है कि नियन्त्रण रेखा ने किसी परिवार को विभाजित नहीं किया है। पर कश्मीरी अलगाववादियों की क्या मजबूरी है कि वे जम्मू-कश्मीर राज्य की बात कर रहे हैं, जबकि उन्हें केवल कश्मीर क्षेत्र से ही सरोकार है?

 जब कश्मीरी मुसलमान भारत का हिस्सा होने के विरुद्ध तर्क देते हैं तो कहते हैं कि वे भारतीयों से वांशिक रूप से अलग हैं, उनका धर्म अलग है। उन में से अधिकांश स्वयं को भारतीय नहीं मानते। कश्मीर के मुसलमान डोगरा राजा हरिसिंह के खिलाफ तो 1947 से भी पहले लड़ रहे थे। तो अब वे जम्मू-कश्मीर की बात कैसे कर रहे हैं? वे महाराजा के जीते अन्य क्षेत्रों पर कैसे दावा ठोक सकते हैं, जब वह महाराजा ही उनके लिए पराया था? लद्दाख, बल्तिस्तान और गिलगित तो उस समय रियासत का हिस्सा भी नहीं थे, जब डोगरा राजाओं ने जम्मू कश्मीर को अंग्रेज़ों से खरीदा। 

लेखक के विचार में कश्मीरियों के इस रवैये के दो कारण हैं — पहला तो यह कि इस तरह वे कह सकेंगे कि हमें इस्लामी पाकिस्तान नहीं चाहिए बल्कि एक धर्मनिरपेक्ष जम्मू-कश्मीर चाहिए, इससे उन्हें विश्व में सुनवाई मिलेगी — क्योंकि पाकिस्तान और इस्लामी आतंकवाद दुनिया भर में बदनाम हो चुके हैं। दूसरा, इससे उन्हें सौदेबाजी भी करने के लिए जगह मिल जाती है। कश्मीर का जम्मू-कश्मीर का एक छोटा सा अंश होना एक ऐसा तथ्य है जिस के और भी कई अर्थ निकलते हैं। अब चूँकि जम्मू और लद्दाख भारत के साथ खुश हैं, उनके ऊपर तो तथाकथित “आज़ादी” नहीं थोपी जा सकती। बाकी रहा कश्मीर का 6000 वर्ग मील का क्षेत्रफल। यदि इसे एक अलग देश बनाया जाता है, तो यह विश्व के सब से छोटे “लैंड लाक्ड” (ऐसे देश जिनकी कोई सीमा समुद्र से नहीं मिलती) देशों में से होगा – वैकिटन सिटी, लक्समबर्ग और एकाध ही देश इससे छोटे होंगे।

अब आप ही सोचिये कि भारत, पाकिस्तान और चीन के बीच फंसे इस देश की “आज़ादी” कितने दिन चलेगी? भारत से छुटकारा पाएँगे तो पाकिस्तान निगल जाएगा। दरअसल कश्मीर के कुछ नेता और बेशक पाकिस्तान भी तो मूलतः यही चाहते हैं, पर क्या कश्मीर की आम जनता इसी अंजाम के लिए लड़ रही है? क्या पाकिस्तान उन्हें धारा 370 जैसे विशेषाधिकार देगा? क्या वहाँ भी तालिबानी हुकूमत न चलने लगेगी?

इतने छोटे से भूमि क्षेत्र में क्या इतने प्राकृतिक संसाधन हैं कि यह एक देश बना रहे? जाड़े के महीनों में कश्मीर बर्फ से घिरा रहता है। समुद्र की बात छोड़ें, सड़क से भी वहाँ पहुँचना दूभर हो जाता है। जम्मू श्रीनगर राजमार्ग बन्द हो जाता है तो कश्मीर में खाने के लाले पड़ जाते हैं। बीबीसी का यह पृष्ठ देखें जिस में बताया गया है कि वादिए-कश्मीर आज़ाद की गई तो केवल 1800 वर्ग मील होगी, यानी भूटान का दसवाँ हिस्सा। यह क्षेत्रफल विकिपीडिया पर दिए क्षेत्रफल से काफी कम है, पर जो भी है इस छोटे से क्षेत्र के देश बनने की कल्पना, वह भी ऐसे माहौल में, किसी का भी भला नहीं करेगा। लोकतन्त्र में बहुमत की चलती है, तो राज्य के 7-15% क्षेत्रफल में बसी जनसंख्या पूरे राज्य की बाबत फैसला क्यों करे? 

कठुआ के किसी डोगरी भाषी या लेह के किसी बौद्ध को तो निज़ामे-मुस्तफा की चाहत नहीं है। कश्मीर का जम्मू-कश्मीर का एक छोटा सा अंश होना इस बात को भी झुठलाता है कि लोकतन्त्र होने के नाते बहुमत की बात मानी जानी चाहिए। बिल्कुल सही है, लोकतन्त्र में बहुमत की ही चलती है, पर राज्य के 7-15% क्षेत्रफल में बसी जनसंख्या क्या पूरे राज्य की बाबत फैसला करेगी? क्या यह लोकतन्त्र के खिलाफ नहीं होगा? कठुआ में रह रहे एक डोगरी भाषी या लेह में रह रहे किसी बौद्ध को तो निज़ामे-मुस्तफा (इस्लामी शासन) की चाहत नहीं है। कश्मीर तीन ओर से उन क्षेत्रों से घिरा है जो बेशक भारतवादी हैं, और चौथा यानी पश्चिमी सिरा पाकिस्तान ने हथिया रखा है। 

एक संप्रभु लोकतांत्रिक देश के लिए कोई इलाका कितना बड़ा होना चाहिए जिस के आधार पर इसके निवासियों को आत्मनिर्णय का अधिकार दिया जाए? लोकतन्त्र के नाते, क्या अब इसके बाद हैदराबाद या मेरठ के किसी मुस्लिम बहुल क्षेत्र में रायशुमारी करनी पड़ेगी? कश्मीरी हिन्दुओं की माँग है कि यदि कश्मीरी मुसलमानों उन्हें अपने साथ नहीं रहने देते तो उन्हें “पनुन कश्मीर” (अपना कश्मीर) के नाम से कश्मीर के एक हिस्से में बसाया जाए जो भारत का अभिन्न अंग हो। 

यदि इस बात को बल दिया जाता है तो कश्मीरी अलगाववादियों के पास “देश” के नाम पर और भी कम क्षेत्र बचता है। यदि इतिहास की घड़ी को पीछे धकेला जा सकता तो शायद यह सही रहता कि महाराजा हरिसिंह ने कश्मीर घाटी को अलग कर पाकिस्तान को सौंप दिया होता। पर राज्य की घुलमुल संरचना के कारण ऐसा नहीं हो सका। राज्य के विभिन्न क्षेत्रों की विभिन्न आकांक्षाएँ थीं, सो उन्होंने राज्य को भारत पाकिस्तान दोनों से अलग रखा। उसके बाद पाकिस्तानी कबाइलियों ने जो किया वह सर्वज्ञात है।

 पर हाँ उस समय यदि वादी पाकिस्तान के हवाले कर दी जाती तो शायद सब के लिए बेहतर होता। कश्मीरी हिन्दू तभी भारत का हिस्सा बन गये हो, पाकिस्तान से आसे अन्य हिन्दूओं की तरह। कश्मीरी मुसलमान खुश होते या नहीं, यह अंदाज लगाना मुश्किल है। पर बेशक कोई “आज़ादी की लड़ाई” तो नहीं चल रही होती। अलगाववादियों को धर्मनिरपेक्षता, आज़ादी और जम्मू-लद्दाख की चिन्ता का ढ़ोंग तो छोड़ देना चाहिये। कश्मीर घाटी का मर्ज़ एक कैंसर का रूप धारण कर चुका है। 

घातक मर्ज़ के लिए दवा भी घातक चाहिए। कोई भी चरम उपाय होगा तो पूरे शरीर को तकलीफ तो होगी ही। या तो बीमारी का उपचार किया जाय या विष ग्रसित अंग को ही शरीर से पृथक कर दिया जाय। दर्दनाक बात है पर वाकई कश्मीर का आकार इतना छोटा है कि इसके ना होने पर भारत के मानचित्र में कोई बहुत ज़्यादा अन्तर नहीं पड़ेगा। घाटी को या तो देश में पूरी तरह समाहित करना चाहिये (दफा 370 हटाकर) या फिर पूरी तौर से दफा। किसी भी देशभक्त भारतीय की तरह लेखक को भी कश्मीर में लोगों की तकलीफें, और कत्लो-गारत देख कर तकलीफ होती है। पर वहाँ लोग क्यों मारे जा रहे हैं? वहाँ जो अलगाववादी हिंसा हो रही है, उसके कारण वहाँ सेना है, या सेना होने के कारण अलगाववादी हिंसा है? 

1989 से पहले तो सब ठीक था। आप ही बतायें, यदि यह जिहाद आज ही समाप्त हो जाए, तो क्या कुछ ही समय में वहाँ से सेना नहीं हटे जायेगी? कश्मीरी अलगाववादियों को इस प्रश्न का उत्तर मालूम है। उन्हें और उनके नेताओं को यह पता है कि वे जिस दिन चाहेंगे उस दिन निर्दोष लोगों की मौतों को रोक सकते हैं। पर अलगाववादियों की सोच यही है कि जब तक असहाय लोग कुरबान नहीं होंगे तब तक निज़ामे-मुस्तफा नहीं मिलेगा। इतिहास कहता है कि टालमटोल राजनीतिक शक्ति के रहते यह नामुमकिन है कि “आर या पार” जैसा कोई रवैया भारत सरकार अख्तियार करे। शायद इसलिए कश्मीरी मुसलमानों के हित में यही है कि वे यथापूर्व स्थिति को प्राप्त करने का प्रयत्न करें — लड़ाई झगड़ा छोड़ें, भारत के विरुद्ध छिड़ा जेहाद समाप्त करें, स्कूलों, दफ्तरों, सिनेमाओं, खेलगाहों, यहाँ तक कि मैखानों में जाना शुरू करें। जो हिन्दू घाटी छोड़ कर जा चुके हैं, वे तो संभवतः लौटेंगे नहीं। 1989 से पहले जो था, उसे हासिल करें। पर शुरुवात पत्थर-बाज़ी बंद होने से ही हो सकती है। – मूल अंग्रेज़ी लेख से लेखक द्वारा स्वयं अनूदित।

Monday, March 19, 2012

Reorganization of States including J&K inevitable!

19th March, 2012
New Delhi
Press Release
Reorganization of States including J&K inevitable!
                      Prof. Bhim Singh, Chairman, NPP & Member, National Integration Council while addressing several groups from Telangana, Gorkhaland and some other states at Jantar Mantar today demanded urgent attention of the Union Govt. for the Reorganization of several states with a clear agenda to strengthen the bonds of National Integration, security and democratic institutions to strengthen federalism in India.

                He strongly advocated for the protection, promotion and preservation of cultural identity of the people in each region, may it be Gorkhaland in West Bengal, Jammu Pradesh and Ladakh in J&K, Telangana in Andhra Pradesh. He said that the situation in J&K is critical as the present coalition government of NC and Congress have become security risk and the state terrorism has became the rule of law which, he said, was obvious from the draconian act of the State Govt. to block the entry of Panthers Party Legislators to enter border Districts of Rajouri and Poonch which amounts to deep threat to the security of the state. He accused the Central Govt. for keeping quiet on the open loot of the State Exchequer and state terrorism. He said the Reorganization of J&K by allowing separate Assemblies for all the three regions; Ladakh, Kashmir and Jammu is the only solution to end terrorism sponsored from across the borders and patronized by the State Govt.
                   Several members of Parliament belonging to Congress, Telugu Desam Party and Left Group addressed the meeting.
Sd/-Sudesh Dogra
Political Secretary

Monday, February 13, 2012

What is India’s case in Kashmir? by Aakar Patel Feb 5, 2012

What is India’s case in Kashmir?
by Aakar Patel Feb 5, 2012

Does India have a case in Kashmir?

If so, what is it?

The Pakistan case is straight: Let Kashmiris decide whether they want to live as Indians or as Pakistanis. This is supported by the United Nations Security Council resolutions beginning with No 38 in 1948 and going on to No 123 in 1957. The resolutions seek a direct vote, what is called a plebiscite, among people in Jammu & Kashmir on their future. The UN said it would administer this vote, and called for India and Pakistan to demilitarize the state.

Kashmiris shout slogans during a protest in Srinagar February 3, 2012.
The Kashmiri case is slightly less straight. Some of them want accession to Pakistan (Jamaat-e-Islami’s Ali Shah Geelani of Sopore and Muslim Conference’s Mirwaiz Umar Farooq of Srinagar are its champions) through a plebiscite. Some of them (for instance Yasin Malik’s JKLF) want a vote that adds independence as a third option. Some of them (all Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, most Shias and some Sunnis, including the ruling National Conference and the opposition PDP) are fine with India.

Though Nehru agreed to the plebiscite plan at first, he later backed off. India’s case on the plebiscite is defensive, and rests on technicalities. One is the Security Council resolutions’ sequencing of troop withdrawal. Pakistan was asked to withdraw its troops first. Secondly, India points to the Jammu & Kashmir Assembly’s acceptance of the accession to India in 1954. This is meant to be a substitute for the plebiscite (though the UN specifically said it could not be).

A third, unofficial, reason is that much time has passed and the resolutions have somehow become irrelevant. Kofi Annan said the same thing when as secretary general he was pressed on this matter. After the resolutions of 1957, the UN lost interest. Then the wars of 1965 and 1971 eclipsed the Kashmir issue. The world was more concerned that the subcontinent be at peace than it was about resolving the original problem.

Most Indians may not be aware that the Kashmir issue went to the United Nations because Nehru took it there. Till that time, there were two parties to the dispute, India and Pakistan. The Security Council’s resolution added a third party, the people of Jammu & Kashmir. Nehru went there because he believed India was the aggrieved party. He believed that Hari Singh’s accession was legal and that the only matter for discussion was how to get Pakistan to vacate the raiders Jinnah had sent in. The other thing some people might not know is that the Jamaat e Islami’s founder Maulana Maududi thought the jihad in Kashmir was un-Islamic. This was because it was launched with freelancers and not by the state officially, as Maududi thought was prescribed in Islam. In a letter to Maulana Shabbir Ahmed Usmani, Maududi said that the April 1948 ceasefire signed between India and Pakistan was binding on all citizens, regardless of the merits.

In prescribing the plebiscite, United Nations took a broader, more humanitarian view of the problem than merely as some property dispute, and India was in trouble. After that, Nehru shifted focus from trying to get the bits Pakistan had won militarily, to trying to secure the acquiescence of the population of Jammu & Kashmir.

In time, even this did not work out. The state’s prime minister Sheikh Abdullah sensed the unease of some if not most Muslims in staying with India. His politics began to reflect this, and an alarmed Nehru dismissed Abdullah and jailed him.

This began a sequence of Indian meddling in the state’s politics. The Kashmiri complaint was that Delhi did mischief and kept upending its leadership. This was true.

This resulted in the Kashmiri revolt that began under Benazir Bhutto’s first term. A parallel development was the forming of the jihadi groups in Pakistan. One group, the Hizbul Mujahideen, was supported by the Jamaat e Islami under its third Amir, Qazi Hussain Ahmad, who broke with Maududi’s wisdom. The Deobandi Harkat ul Ansar (later renamed Harkat ul Mujahideen after an American ban, and still later renamed Jaish e Muhammad) and the Salafi Lashkar e Taiba rose to lead the jihad. The violence continued till India sent troops to the border after Jaish attacked its parliament. Under pressure, president Pervez Musharraf backed down, and banned the groups in 2002. The jihad in Kashmir ended almost immediately and today the violence is almost totally gone. The theatre of these groups has now become Pakistan.

Next week we shall again pick up the thread of what, if any, case India has on Kashmir.

freedune Conversation Starter  1 week ago
The clearest case is that some people want a separate state on the basis of their religion.  There is no great cultural separation that Kashmiris have that sets them apart with the rest of India as compared to many other cultural groups.

The clearest case is that Pakistan decided it wanted to be the sexy cowboy of the Islamic world, and to assume political leadership by 'showing the kaffirs' their place.  Most of the trouble in the world today emanates from this land, although they may take inspiration from Saudi Arabia philosophically. 

The clearest case is that the British played a very dangerous game when they left India.  They should have merged Kashmir into either India, as the ruler was Hindu, or Pakistan, as Muslims were a majority.  There would have been a one-time bloodshed as along the rest of the borders, but the case would have been closed there.

The clearest case is that Nehru was a megalomaniac who wanted to emerge as a world statesman, and his delusions failed us magnificently as evident in the Kashmir problem he gifted us and the defeat to China we had to suffer.

The clearest case is that the Indian government has been ruled by a bunch of impotent cowardly criminals, who could not take a hard stand and kept on yielding to Islamist pressures.  The worst part of the saga is that they did not do anything to claim our land back from Pakistan even after its defeats in the 1965 and the 1971 wars.  Till today, we do not have the truth about what killed Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri in Tashkent.

The clearest case is that subsequent Congress regimes have looted Kashmir and then crushed opposition, thus fomenting further rebellion and hatred against India amongst its population, which made them vulnerable to the lure of Jihad.

The clearest case is that India's people keep on voting the bastards back into power through commission or omission, due to their petty corrupt jingoistic mindsets, and there seems to be no miracle cure in sight to change this permanently.
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NPegasus 1 week ago
Ok.  So what do we do now?

R. Chaudhry 1 week ago
We need to do the following:

First and foremost, we need to stop being defensive about the issue. It is shameful how easily we are cowed and how poor our PR is. Instead of this being an issue we are 'sensitive' about, it needs to be an issue we are all very clear about.

Every time we put pre-conditions on discussing the issue [and we do it all the time], we lead the world to believe that we have something to hide, something to be ashamed about. Every time Pakistan says 'Kashmir', we go 'first you do this, this and that'. Imo, this needs to change to 'Of course, we'll talk about Kashmir. We have *always* talked about Kashmir. It is Pakistan who has a history of direct violent action on the issue.'

Talking is easy, so talk till the sky falls down. Just don't concede any points.

Second, on the UN front, again we need to be perceived as being the good intentioned, willing ones. So the next time the UN resolutions are raised, and we can depend on Pakistan to raise them, we need to say that it is pointless harping on them until the preconditions are met. That we are a nation that is willing to consider the matter carefully but only once the pre-conditions are met. 

The resolutions talk about Kashmir as it appeared on Cyril Radcliffe's map. Today, Pakistan has roughly 1/3rd of that area, China has another 1/3rd. For the preconditions to be met, China and Pakistan would have to withdraw. :) Can you see China ever conceding *anything*? :)

So let those two allies decide who will shoulder the blame for being the intransigent block to resolution - there is no need for us to shoulder the blame simply because so far we have let ourselves be outmaneuvered.  

Third, and most important, we need to clean up our act in Kashmir. The state has been in a state of lawlessness for 3 decades. This is the moment when good governance really counts. One more generation gone to this madness, and we might see a situation like Afghanistan develop - a people so used to incessant warfare that they cannot conceive of peace. Do not know how it works.

This will be the toughest part but it is doable. Explaining how will take too long for this comment.

There are, obviously, other implications and necessities pertaining to the issue, but the three points mentioned above, and undertaken simultaneously, do seem to be the crux of  any strategy aiming at normalization of the issue.

And it is time to sort it out - we have spent too long and too much in blood and money on this issue. Simply because we have been acting like idiots.
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S.Lal 1 week ago

The Indian
Independence Act 1947 (10 & 11 Geo 6 c. 30) was as an Act
of the Parliament of the United Kingdom
that partitioned British
India into the two new independent dominions of India
and Pakistan. The Act received the royal
assent on 18 July 1947, and the two new countries came into being on 15 August.

The Act's most important
provisions were:

division of British India into the two new and fully sovereign dominions of India
and Pakistan, with effect from 15 August 1947;

partition of the provinces of Bengal and Punjab between the two new

establishment of the office of Governor-General
in each of the two new countries, as representative of the Crown;

conferral of complete legislative authority upon the respective Constituent Assemblies of the two new

termination of British suzerainty over the princely
states, with effect from 15 August 1947, and recognized the right of states
to accede to either dominion[4]

dropping of the use of the title "Emperor
of India" by the British monarch (this was subsequently done by King George VI by royal proclamation on 22 June 1948).

The Act also made provision for
the division of joint property, etc. between the two new countries, including
in particular the division of the armed forces.

Riyasat of Jammu and Kashmir acceded to India according to provisions of the Act, under
the Act by which Pakistan
was created. If J&K’s accession to India
is not considered valid and legal, then, creation of Pakistan is also invalid and illegal.
Except the area forcibly occupied and under its control now, Pakistan has no locus standi in J&K. UN
resolution, a result of international chess game, has repeatedly been violated
by Pakistan: {1} By not vacating area occupied stealthily in 1948. (This was
the first step to be taken by Pakistan
according to UN) {2}  By invasion of
1965.(Which rendered UN resolution obsolete) {3} By handing over J&K areas
to China. {4} By Kargil invasion. {5} By sending Pak army/ISI trained personels
as Jehadi Terrorists who further ethnically cleansed K.Valley which again makes
any sort of ‘will of Kashmiris’ invalid. 

AND above all, accession to india by Maharaja of J&K was
approved by State Assembly. So Pakistan
has no locus standi. Pakistan
is playing a religious card which India
being a secular democracy can not highlight due to which India remains
on the defensive. 

MUSLIM-MUSLM-ONE-NATION is obviously no principle on which Pakistan’s
claim or for that matters Kashmiris will or wish can be accepted. Had it been
so, there would not have been 57 MUSLIM countries, Iran,
Iraq would have not faught
war for 10 years, Bangladesh
would not have separated from Pakistan.
From any angle, Pakistan
has no claim over J&K except ‘Seenazori’ which had been supported by
western nations till now.

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Soumen Sengupta Conversation Starter  1 week ago
Gift of Gandhi family:

Nehru: Kashmir
Indira: Emergency
Rahul: Bofors
Sonia: 2G
the story goes on...................
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Kamal 1 week ago
All that is written is part of history now. As the things stand today, Pakistan does not have a case in Kashmir, as besides few of its paid stooges, nobody really wants to side  with Pakistan. India should and could have instead granted autonomy to Kashmir but the geopolitical situation does not permit. Such a step will be suicidal for India and most probably for Kashimiri population also. The movement the Indian troops withdraw, the jehadis will penetrate Kashmir and would start dictating Kashmiri population and would be source of constant security threats to India. Their agenda is also not secular and they view India as a Hindu nation. Therefore the matter is likely to remain hanging for another quite a few years until the situation changes there drastically. Except for security considerations, India does not seem to have any advantage of keeping Kashmir with it. The whole exercise is proving a drain on the economic resources of India.
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Terra Nova 1 week ago
how do you know if India is secular. Totally agree that the constitution is secular and a fine one, but the attitude of some people is not really secular. I am not sure how the big that section is.
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bbc_abc Conversation Starter  1 week ago
@ Terra Nova:

Indian constitution is secular? Please go read it first!
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Ramchi Conversation Starter  1 week ago
No it is NOT secular! For a seculars there will be only one rule of law!
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bbc_abc Conversation Starter  1 week ago
@mv : I'm going to ask you too to read the constitution, especially, the part where it talks about religious minorities.
mv 1 week ago
Isn 't it?  I thought this was the Preamble to the Indian Constitution....
The Constitution declares India to be a sovereign, socialist, secular, democratic republic, assuring its citizens of justice, equality, and liberty, and endeavours to promote fraternity among them.

Meeta2000 1 week ago
If we have to go back to the concept of India then Afghanistan and Pakistan and Bangladesh must also be considered part of it.
Let's see how Afghanistan is faring. It was a progressive country that was gifted with war of others be it USSR or somebody else. Result - Taliban that destroyed the world view of that people who were 'more advanced' than India. Now the lands have been taken out of their control and they remain a warring population labeled savages with no say on what goes in their own country.
Bangladesh - late in formation but economically a mess. Their population infiltrates into India and even the Nobel prize could not solve it's crisis. Their industries are the most unwanted in the world like stitching clothes and breaking ships. If this is what their children can aspire for then there is no more discussion necessary.
Pakistan - a combinationnof the fates of Afghanistan and Bangladesh. Add terrorism tag. With the label of the only country founded on the basis of Islam and you have an impoverished Israel with the might of bangladesh.
Kashmiris must introspect and see what their future holds for them? It looks more like... show more
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Labrinto L 1 week ago
India has progressed immensely, it does not even consider North East as a part of the nation, the people of North East are discriminated based on their race, yet we defend ourselves and do not term this as a racist act. Go to Delhi and find yourselves how girls from NE are an easy target for eve teasers. We also have progressed with the nature of scams, we have multi billion dollar scams instead of multi million dollar scams. The Kashmiri's should vote to join EU :) not India Pakistan or Bangladesh.
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Ghoda 1 week ago
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rg594 1 week ago
Ya- I'd love to see a broke EU try and defend the worlds most difficult terrain that exists between  three nuclear powers and Afghanistan.
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ComicProject 1 week ago
There can be no option of surrendering Kashmir. The Kashmiris have two options either accept India or go to PoK, at least they will not get to feel what it feels like to be driven from their homes like the lakhs of Kashmiri Pandits living as refugees in their own country.
Too much of Indian blood,effort and money has gone into Kashmir to surrender it.
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chanakya_the_cynic 1 week ago
Read about the concept of sunk cost and abandon that line of reasoning. There are other, better reasons to maintain that Kashmir should remain part of India
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Kunal 1 week ago
Will the Kashmiri HIndus get to vote if there is a plebiscite ? In that case Kashmir itself would have to be divided into two parts, the Hindu part which will go to India and let's guess that the Muslim part goes to Pakistan or stays independent. Would that be acceptable ? Would that end the conflict ?

I dont think there is any question of where Jammu and Ladakh would that be ok ? Or they want that as well in their territory ?

Plebiscite won't work. J&K is part of India...Pakistan or free Kashmir is not going to happen..either accept that or suffer.
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Ramchi Conversation Starter  1 week ago
Any plebiscite to happen in Kashmir where the problem started in the year of 1947 during partition must have the same population ration ratio (where Hindus was substantially larger closer to Muslim population), now. So Government of India & Kashmir must ensure this happens first before they (those who seek Plebiscite)  can make any attempt of giving separate land to anyone not withstanding the fact that India will become disintegrated after that.

India must accept the vote on that precondition alone.

If this is seen as a Hindu-Muslim conflict then we must trade all Muslims for Kashmir where the phase II of Indo-Pak partition will be completed.

Anything other than this India need not even think of wasting time.

There is a third-option where they can fight through war (more specific, through Jihad); they have to kill every single Hindu in India before claiming Kashmir.
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bharat 1 week ago
Only in India do you find bleeding hearts and artists who want to renounce the spoils of statecraft. You guys need to toughen up and learn to sleep well after winning your wars, despite the collateral damage you inflicted. Kashmir belongs to India - if America can be a great power after genocide of the Native Americans, and enslavement of the Africans, and Britain can rule from sunrise to sunset by cheating and trickery, Alexander and Genghis can conquer by pillage and plunder, and they all can still be respected and admired, India and Indians need to discover the Ashoka in them - Channd Ashoka was the greatest Indian king - and he killed more than most. All rulers and great powers need to do that - Rome was not built with garlands and love. So toughen up, and fight to first absorb Kashmir permanently, then other lands (in due course, with intelligence, and patience, when the time is right) to rebuild the great India that once dominated its hemisphere. We have a seventh of humanity to feed, we need more lands, and food, and wealth. It should hurt each of you much more to see a hungry, ashamed Indian... show more
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R. Chaudhry 1 week ago
I'd be interested in your citations re: Nehru's reasons for referring Kashmir to the UN. To the best of my knowledge, Nehru had referred the issue to the UN, disregarding the vehement opposition of Sardar Patel to the same, because he wanted to be perceived as a man wedded to justice, democracy and to the legal process. This action, alongwith the declaration of plebiscite, had been taken at the recommendation of Governor General Mountbatten. The latter stroked Nehru's ego and perception of self until Nehru was no longer willing to see the valid objections of Patel.

Incidentally, it was the partisanship of the British [busy still with the Great Game] that queered the pitch in UN as well.
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ghatothgacha 1 week ago
This only proves the irreparable damage the Nehru dynasty has done to this country and continues to do so under the name of "gandhi".
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Lakx_s 1 week ago
We are discussing something which happened in 1940s-50s the time when India was partitioned into Pakistan and India. The reason it was partitioned was the hindu population in areas dominated by muslims. It is the same with Kashmir, it still has lot of non-muslims despite many hindus being killed and driven out of Kashmir. So the only solution for Kashmir is a partition. plebiscite will work only in places where the whole population is same not in kashmir where we have different religious and linguist groups. When we have such minorities this plebiscite will wipe out the minorities, so not a solution for every one. 

Its like 3 sons are fighting for the ancestral property and if 2 of them are togather the solution will still have to be a 3 way partition where each son gets a part, if we have a plebiscite kind of vote then 2 of them will get all the property and the 3rd a minority will be left with nothing when all of them have equal rights. In Kashmirs case the minority has more rights over the land then the majority who are mostly invaders while the land is hindus ancestral property. So the... show more
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Kunal 1 week ago
FP is becoming a junk blog day by day. Sensationalist articles like these or utter bullshit from Akshaya Mishra seem to be their strategy to attract visitors.
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Ajay 1 week ago
Incidentally, the contents of the post, including historical references on UN, are accurate! The interpretation may just not be convenient to most.

vicharappa 1 week ago
Are Pakistanis Free? Do they have freedom? 

And so much hullboo about Nations on the basis of Religion take a look 
at Islamic Nations ... Please have a look in Syria, Egypt, Lybia, Iraq 
& of course Afghanisthan. Do they even so much as come an inch close
to India in the meaning of Freedom, Development & Growth ?

Or even for that matter does one really believe that the OIL RICH Islamic countries Free?

ON the other hand take a look at Non-Religion based countries - USA, Europe, Japan are their People Lot more Free? More financially independent?

In an atmosphere as vitiated as in Pakistan which is in neighbourhood It
is the motherly umbrella of India because of which Kashmiri Muslims are so much more comfortable.

Demilitarisation by India will only lead to Pakistan increasing infiltration big way with Taliban guys. Will the Kashmir Muslims then feel free? And don't forget Saeed Naqvi, he will immideately have training camps there. 

Finally, what about the Kashmiri Pandits ? Do they have a "CASE" in Kashmir ?
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freedune Conversation Starter  1 week ago
The people of the North East are culturally further removed from the Hindi heartland or the western regions than the people of Kashmir are different from the Himachalis or the Uttarakhandis.  Should we yield to the demands of the Bodos for independence?  What about the Tamils?
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Theideaofindia 1 week ago
Precisely, the idea called India is in a precarious state with all the corruption prevalent. Any entity seeking independence on the basis of religion at the cost of others beliefs cannot be allowed. What an open discussion allows if conducted in a logical and cold manner, is to allow each litigant to place the cards on the table. There is no guarantee of an apodictic breakthrough but at least it is better to move forward. At this juncture India is vulnerable and precarious and the decisions taken now will have ramifications many many years later.

Maskin Chopest 1 week ago
Technically, Kashmir's status is unknown. The ruler during those turbulent years after the partition wanted his kingdom to remain independent but as Pakistan invaded Kashmir and the Hindu king accepted India's help to thwart the invaders on the condition that it later be merged with India.

The Hindu King preferred Kashmir to be Independent and later was forced to join India but he never liked the idea of Kashmir merging with Pakistan.

India should have implemented the UN vote in 1948 and that would have solved the problem forever but Nehru's fear that Kashmiris would choose to go in Paksisthan's way lead him to ignore the vote.

But no one can deny the fact that the Indian military committed atrocities in Kashmir and the Pakistani Government supported Jihadist organizations to wreck havoc in Kashmir. India could've acted smarter from the beginning and Pakistan should have stressed the need for a democratic and political way to solve the crisis rather than supporting terrorist organizations.

In any case whether India wins in the end or Pakistan rejoices, the sheer losers in the unfolding will be the Kashmiris... as they have always been!
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S.Lal 1 week ago
For details, please, read my comments in  this column. Kashmiri muslims are no loosers, they are receiving extra billions of rupees as grants from Govt. of India. They are also helpers of Pakistani Jehadi terrorists who are perpetrators of atrocities on Kashmiri Pandits(Hindus) and have ethnically cleansed the K.Valley. There can be no crime more heinous against humanity in present times. Mr.Maskin, clear the cobwebs of your mind.

Keepgoingakarpatel 1 week ago
One of the problems for any dialogue and meeting of minds has been cashmere getting caught in geo-strategic calculations of the external powers, the mess created by the hasty partition, jihad of the amire momeen[you still hear it loudly in youtube] for which there had to be an equal response from the Indian Army and the suffering of the ordinary people. If one thinks coldly whatever perspective or belief that one adheres to which conjectures ones definition of truth, time has come for not open up the floor for discussion with clear rules of dialogue and surely there could be solution that is comes mid-way to all parties the impediment being the deep state and its supporters and mixing up religion with what is patently a political question. Being a topic that is bound to rouse tempers, it has to be very very well researched deductively argued to build a cumulative set of claims based upon cold facts and not the crap that was turned out a while back by a first post journo with the azadi songs written for a particular audience, In India the absence of a strong leader like Sardar Vallabahai Patel and corruption undermines any effort... show more

Everyoneisaloser 1 week ago
The losers are all Maskin, oridinary Indians who have invested enormous amount of emotional capital in defending the idea of India, the kashmiri families caught in the cross fire, the jannat tourist, the ordinary land of the pure trader[not the jet set mohatraramma, in India the peacenicks, activists, concerned citizens and grasshopper listeners who need the zulm azadi cauldron to boil in order to concoct the magic realism piece] the ordinary jawan who endures difficult conditions from his way from Karur  to cashmere and the tax payer, You are not special.
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Keepgoingakarpatel 1 week ago
This dialogue should be done in a civilized manner with clear rules of debate towards a way forward not circumnavigating on the past.

Indian 1 week ago
The Freedom of India Act envisaged only two countries- India and Pakistan. There was/ is no scope for amending it now. A number of people have fought the battle for independence and anything different will amount to disrespect for them. As such the question of Kashmir being an independent nation does not arise. The fault, if any rests with Nehru, and there's no reason why I should pay for his faults. However, the next generation Nehrus, whose only claim to fame, is their hereditary line, and not intelligence and statesmanship, can't obviously call Nehru's mistake a mistake. India's line should be very clear. There's no question of independence of Kashmir since that's illegal demand. If any of the Kashmiris want freedom, they are free to go anywhere including their beloved Pakistan. The gates are open from our side. As long as they are in India, they should respect the Constitution of India, which mst be amended to repeal special status for Kashmir.
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TruthSpeaker 1 week ago
thats the whole genesis of the problem, you want the land, but not the people living on the land.
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Nativerooster1 6 days ago
Yes we don't want Kashmiris as slaves ! That is culture of other societies and countries and not of Indians. We are a free society. You do all anti-social and anti-national activities, still you have rights to proov innocence and at times to the astonishment of whole nation a criminal manages to go Scot free ! People who pour scorn on such humane system are welcome to leave this country and try their antics elsewhere which are now becoming rarer and dearer ! "Aatey-dhal ka bhaw maloom pad jayega" ?! Remeber "Guantmo Bay" !

nitin 1 week ago
A discussion over whether Kashmir is India's case or Pakistan case is totally irrelevant . Kashmir being geographically and strategically located is too important for India .  

Grievousness of the indigenous people of kashmir are best saved with india only , look the work of china in tibet or paksitan in POK what they have left for the indigenous people ,nothing .

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Krishna Gupta 1 week ago
We could debate the Indian case in Kashmir endlessly (and indeed, we will with your next post :) ), but the reality is that this discussion is irrelevant. India has made (and continues to make) a number of mistakes in the region, but the issue of Kashmir is today important to India's territorial and ideological integrity. The resolution should be a pragmatic one for all parties involved at the time. A porous LOC that is defined as the national border and semi-autonomy on both sides would be the way to go in my opinion. 

Today's independence is an economic one - Gujarat is more independent than a Bhutan is. Perhaps Kashmiris would be better off focusing on keeping their Kashmiriyat intact, on removing the parasites within their own community, and on giving their own entrepreneurs the resources to build economic independence. In the meantime, we can only hope the Centre becomes wiser and gives Kashmiris a reason feel as integral to the notion of India as they should.
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Rameez Farooq 1 week ago
Kashmiri's need freedom from india completely. wonder u r analysis does not feautre killings, rape ,mass nation will agree to economic development if such brutalities have been done.. tats why u never understand y there is a issue on 1st hand
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NPegasus 1 week ago
Kashmiris need freedom from their own insanity, victimhood and self-inflicted wounds - real and imaginary. 

No entity comes out clean is clean in Kashmir.  Everyone has blood on thier hands.  The Indian state looks better, despite its follies, than others.  The killings, rape and brutalities have also happened at the hands of militants and seperatists which no Kashmiri dare talk about.  Nor any Kashmiri care about the miniorites who have been systematically removed.

Jammu Kashmir & Laddakh

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