Where Future of Kashmiri’s Lies?


Where future of Kashmiri’s lies?

60 years have passed but conflict remained unresolved and tension continues to be simmering in the name of Kashmir or Kashmiri’s. Apparently thrust is placed on the Kashmiri but interests are entwined in territorial aggrandizement than future of people. Kahsmiris have never been the parameter in conflict resolution in last six decades. For political purposes, aspiration of Kahsmiri’s has always been subject or demand from the Pakistan. After the 17 years of proxy war, question is that where future of Kashmir lies, has taken the importance under the growing opposition to any division in the name of religion or region, what normally purported by Islamabad but to their own suitability. But last 17 years of militancy has created new dimensions and dynamics of Kashmir conflict where non-Kashmir militants were infiltrated to cause damage to the communal harmony, and to communalize the conflict by forcing out the Kahsmiri Hindus from valley and targeting non-Muslims that has seriously undermined the question of right to self-determination, that was intentionally allowed to happen by Pakistan to marginalize the third option that could have become one of the possible solution.
While Pakistan’s failure to emerge as viable democratic state and continued military dictatorship, and in post 9/11 period extremism and terrorism emanating from Pakistan has equally diminished the prospects future of state with Pakistan.
As Indian administered Kashmir is the only part that represents the diversity and reflects the multi-cultural and multi-religious face of Kashmir. Whereas, parts under Pakistan administration had already whipped out the Hindus, Sikhs and non-Muslims during the fight in Kashmir where they either left or were killed. While Pakistan controlled Areas were to follow the Islamabad’s political culture where electoral or plural politics was not introduced into these Areas, and pro-Pakistan minded forces were only allowed to rule these Areas till today. Islamabad’s hand-picked but Politically naïve leadership was entrusted political role in these parts, not to speak about their rights, identity that has seriously undermined the progress and political identity in Pakistan controlled parts. This political leadership’s indifference to their people, their rights and development largely contributed to keep these Areas economically underdeveloped and politically underrepresented.whereas record of Pakistan as a state has been grim on all fronts with regard to the progress and rights, not only about the minorities but in general about the steady decline in multiculturalism that presents very dismal picture, and poor statistics; where after 60 years, not only minorities proportion has dramatically decreased but representation in state and other social institutions have largely declined and was discouraged. The only progress they made was to rename country from “Republic of Pakistan” to “Islamic republic of Pakistan” to create Islamic identity to legitimize the connotation of two nations-theory, and rule of military. This trend to redefine political boundaries of Pakistan in political Islamic perspective has undermined the likelihood of Pakistan becoming a democratic state. Islamic characterization of state continues to surge from period of M.A.Jinah to the Pervez Mushraf era, despite both leaders apparent secular posture, claims and personal lives. Jinnah, the most secular in his personal life but strong advocate of Muslim state by calling Indian Muslim as separate Nation; because of different religion, food and heroes, that has played vital role in shaping up the future politics of this country where both secular and Islamic stalwarts are still fighting over, and quoting speeches of Jinnah in their defense.
The difference between M.Ali Jinnah and his successors was that he had to use religion to create the state while his successors, especially military rulers, had to overplay the Islamic character of state to marginalize the democratic and nationalist forces; demanding autonomy, that had been promised in 1940 Resolution, and also democratic process in the country, to justify the military dictatorship.
While religious forces were politically strengthened as a result of shift in changing the political character of the state. Whereas preamble of constitution says that no Law will be introduced against the Quran.Similarly, Mushraf apparent claims about secularism but he drew all political strength from the religious quarters while his eight years in power, largely were devoted to marginalize the liberal political forces in Pakistan. In nations, 60 years period is enough to build the foundations of country and its policies as many nations in post colonial period from China to India are becoming major economic giants while future of Pakistan remains bleak, uncertain and undefined that which direction this country will follow. There is consensus among all elitists, from military top brasses to feudal to Industrialists, those all are entwined in political to family ties, not to allow any genuine social change in this country. The thirst for social change is so deep and widespread that incident of Chief Justice had sparked so widespread public protest and unrest that had really worried all circles over this new political activism which civil society members had demonstrated. As a result of that threat military moved so heavy handedly that they reversed whole process and brought this country at the brink of total destruction and destabilization. As a result of military’s muddling into the political affairs and hold on to the power, Mushraf government’s all claims of moderation, freedom of press, economic progress and democracy came apart so quickly and suddenly that Pakistan now faces the worst crisis in its history. The crisis erupted in Pakistan are largely linked to the forces of extremism unleashed by military within Pakistan and its neighboring countries from Kashmir to Afghanistan by calling them their strategic assets, in the name of Jihad in Afghanistan and freedom in Kashmir, now challenging very integrity of Pakistan but poses serious threats to the regional peace and stability. The political discord within provinces that grew over the period as a result of discriminatory policies of undemocratic rulers have promoted the religious forces to sideline these genuine voices that helped to strengthened extremism and terrorism, sectarian violence increased, ethnic, linguistic conflicts, and inter-institutional conflicts have reached to the point of no return in Pakistan.The challenges to the regional peace posed by Pakistan’s political instability and its nuclear weapons security, are not only genuine but serious about which international community is rightly concerned. The death of Bhutto fuels further concerns and speculations about this looming threat which, Pakistan poses since she is believed to be the victim of her intentions to steer Pakistan toward a responsible state by genuinely seeking an end of this extremist network, nuclear proliferation and curbing military powers to which her Rival Nawaz Sharif and Bhutto were in agreement. But such concerns are not baseless or based on any political prejudices and biases to distort image of Pakistan but are genuine and serious that are based on host of issues; discord among provinces, sects, gender, within institutions, ethnic and linguistic that continue to growing and deepening. Adding to the new dimension, threat of extremism and terrorism, nuclear proliferation, political insurgencies have further strengthened these pre-existing threats and fears among all. But Pakistan military rulers seem to be unmoved from these extraordinary developments including the death of Bhutto. Within the country, where military is not only under attack from the extremists but it is surrendering and cooperating with them. claiming under these circumstance, Kashmir, or future of Kashmiri by the state whose own future is not only uncertain but past track record about its minorities, democracy, rule of law, human rights, good governance in Pakistan, and its controlled parts of Kashmir is completely devastating and grim, will be unrealistic to which no one is going to buy. The political struggle in Kashmir and aspirations were always misrepresented and misinterpreted largely owing to the lack of flow of information, and absence of genuine political representation by not allowing to other schools of thought to be represented in the controlled political process by Pakistan agencies.
The political temperature and aspirations can never be measured in underrepresented and underdeveloped these Areas that politically remain sole domain of intelligence agencies and military top brass based in Muree and its Areas from Muszafarabad to Gilgit.
Interesting enough that a state which has denied the democratic and basic rights to its own people since its creation; the rulers who never respected the mandate of the people how they can talk about the will of Kashmiri people, and how far they can be sincere to their claims and rhetoric? The state which has failed to represent different shades of opinion; a state which discriminated its own citizen based on religion and regions, and rulers those remain so indifferent to the voices of 160 million people and so cruel that they didn’t bother to eliminate the dynamic leadership like Z.A.Bhutto, her Daughter Benazir Bhutto, Akbar Bugti and many more fell prey of their hidden interests, how can they ensure the safe future of Kahsmiri’s?. They had created Pakistan for the safe future of Indian Muslims but history is witness how brutally they ruled, killed people, destroyed every institution, and suppressed every voice of their own people.
Apparently, Islamabad is not willing to concede to any of political and economic injustices, if exist in its controlled parts of Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan, neither willing to address those injustices now largely supported by the reports published by the international organizations and EU report on Pakistan administered parts of Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan.
The idea of two Kashmir, if not advanced but existed practically since the partition of India took place on the basis of religion. Kashmir as multi-religious state that had succeeded to survive during partition owing to the strong basis of communal harmony but largely due to the political leadership that had contained flames of communal violence off from spiraling out but unfortunately the Areas came under Pakistan no non-Muslim could find the space to survive. But after more than 4 decades when political uprising in the name of political empowerment of Kashmiri’s was launched, and they repeated old tactic to whip out the non-Muslims to create another place like Pakistan controlled Azad Kashmir by forcing out non-Muslims out of the valley, by killing secular Muslims but failed to change the social fabric of that part. unfortunately, movement in the name of political empowerment, right to self-determination lost appeal, credibility and credentials when they killed secular Muslims, targeted non-Muslims and failed to embrace the very essence of nationalism and right to self termination which is “diversity” and ending up in complete fiasco and terror that landed in the hands of Pakistan dread terrorist out fits like LeT, JeM, HuJI and many such groups those have had no connections except the religious affinity was the factor.Let’s not be oblivion of the fact that present violent political culture in Pakistan that threatens regional peace and stability is the product of policies of undemocratic forces that have been unleashed in the name of Jihad and freedom. Time is to use the discourse to address the discord exist intra-state or inter-state whether in the name of fault lines or ethnic, religious, linguistic and cultural. The message is clear from the present Pakistan crisis and violence that surrounds the country and challenges its very existence where Pushtoon ethnic nationalism largely playing the role along the Durand Line, which is the forgotten fault-line now reclaiming its identity and unity to those Pakistan military rulers were abusing in other areas in the name of religion but defending those acts of violence by calling root cause, or fault lines. Kashmiri was never aspired to be part of Pakistan except the beneficiaries of violence and proxy leadership and politics that two states had inducted and introduced in their respective controlled Areas to counter each other’s propaganda, create culture of disunity and hatred. Now Sardar Qayum, a pro-Pakistan champion seems to be disinclined to push forward the agenda of Pakistan. The ongoing political crisis in Pakistan can seriously affect the process of dialogues on Kashmir and CBMs that needed to push forward to close the decades old perceptional gaps and hatred. The other perception that was popular among the outside world that military in Pakistan is the only force that can strike a deal on Kashmir, that argument appears to be losing the validiy as declining military power and reputation that has plunged Pakistan into serious political chaos, and crisis and only coming time will determine. The cleavage between people and military in Pakistan is going to be deepened in the future and military attempt to cling to the will further widen this cleavage. Placing hope or optimism that military will be able to risk any further unpopularity by clinching any agreement with India is unlikely. Rather military under present circumstances may overplay Kashmir conflict and reactivate some militant activities to regain its lost reputation.
How Indian leadership responds to these political crisis in Pakistan and how far succeeds to take the advantage of situation is that question which will determine the future of politics between Pakistan and India.
Indian government statements showing its inclination to see the stability in Pakistan but Pakistan policies might change its present position and posture soon. The attempt to put together scattered Pakistan supported groups in under Mirwaz group in valley by bringing Shabir Shah into it that reflects the mindset and course to follow that might Pakistan supported groups to save their skin. As these leaders presently in a critical juncture where their pro-Pakistan politics is under erosion they have never shown no qualm by aligning with military dictators, who deprived their own people from their rights, life and property. Meantime, forces inspired to be part of Pakistan like Sardar Qayum seem to be disinclined and frustrated after the death of Bhutto to talk openly and distance himself from such rhetoric indicates how unending dictatorship in Pakistan has affected the political course in Kashmir.

Mumtaz Khan
Vice Chairman
International Kashmir Alliance
55 Nugget Ave Suite 230 Toronto
M1p 3L1 Canada credence unison

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3 Responses to Where Future of Kashmiri’s Lies?

  1. Islamabad says:

    it should be resolved accoridng to kashmiries

  2. Ajaz Ahmed Kashmiri says:

    Yes…….neither Indian nor Pakistanis have the right to decide the future of Kashmir. Only and Only Kashmiri, both Muslims and Hindus should together come decide their future…..Kashmir issue must be resolved as per the wishes of the majority….

  3. Gaurav says:

    Nice blog for great Cause

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