COMMENTARY / INSIGHT
Reign of terror in Kashmir
Pakistan and India must revamp their strategies to solve the Kashmir conundrum
Asad HussainAsad Hussain
MAY 25, 2018
The continued belligerency between Pakistan and India has unleashed severe brutality and spate of violence in the troubled region of Indian held Kashmir. The feeling of ill-will arousing active hostility between the two combatant neighbours is yielding ferocity and vehemence in the areas of Jammu and Kashmir. Across this land, the war affected people are demanding the commencement of long-awaited process of dialogue to solve Kashmir issue which is also a bone of contention between the two countries.
If history is any guide, the tumultuous political track record of Pakistan and India to solve the lingering conundrum through wars and back-door diplomacies have unveiled that peace and stability always remained on the backburner. Many analysts opine that in the era of atomic bomb, the climate of animosity can be catastrophic. A problem like Kashmir issue can be streamlined through dialogue only.
A glance at the world trends and popular narratives reveal that it is stepping towards gaining sustainable and developing economic prosperity, enduring to bring peace in the regions and forming alliances to accomplish well-being and opulence for their respective nationals. At the same time, these two belligerent states are spending the lion’s share of their economies on achieving their filthy and nefarious designs at the expense of killing innocent and unarmed Kashmiris.
The people of Kashmir want to escapape the conflict that has engulfed their economic, social and religious lives desperately. Sincere talks between India and Pakistan is the only way this can happen
The people of Kashmir are in a dire need of alleviation and assuagement from this decades-long violence and reign of terror which has exterminated their socio-political, economic and religious lives. Therefore, sincere deliberation on behalf of India and Pakistan is the only way left for chalking out stability in the peace-thirsty Kashmir.
The recent wave of terror and killings in the valley of Kashmir sparked in reaction to the brutal killing of Burhan Wani in 2016, who was the popular commander of the rebel group. To bring a halt to the civilian uprising in the post-Wani scenario has claimed 130 lives. Indian government sent Dinesh war Sharma, a former intelligence chief being the interlocutor to talk with Kashmiris, excluding Pakistan from the process. However pessimistic wrapping up, the aforementioned process of dialogue coincided with anti-rebel operations by Indian government, abrasive stance against anti-India voices and extending a hard blow to pro-freedom leaders.
Thus, to stand against cruel treatment and grossness of the New Delhi, the freedom fighters under the banner of Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) rejected the ‘honeymoon phases of talks’ by the callous Indian government. Not only this, JRL put forward their demands that commencement of dialogue entirely depended upon New Delhi’s acceptance of Kashmir as a disputed territory and stoppage of unprecedented mass killings resulting in a conducive environment for talks. The appointment of an interlocutor is, no doubt, India’s last trump card and a well-furnished strategy to gain time in order to sustain international pressure and fulfil the regional compulsions.
Moreover, the ongoing skirmishes and showdown between Srinagar and New Delhi accompanied by harsh Indian rhetoric towards Pakistan is projecting a sunset period for the exchange of peaceful talks between the parties involved. To more despair of the Kashmiri people, the National Security Advisors of the two countries met to repair the frayed and fractured relationship in context of Kashmir issue, but no fruitful objectives could be achieved.
According to an international watchdog, around 451 persons including 217 militants, 125 security forces and 108 civilians were killed in 2017.
Therefore, the exigencies of time suggest that enduring commitment to solve this potential threat is the need of the hour. Mere condolences and boilerplate offers of international community towards solving this problem could transfer political, economic and security shocks across the globe at an electric pace, if not faster.
Thence, to solve this weighty and potent issue, the proposed solutions of United Nations (UN) and international community should be considered to deal this univocal challenge. The solutions may be:
1) Plebiscite is internationally the most acknowledged remedy to solve Kashmir issue. The main irritant in the way of its materialisation is that India and Pakistan are reluctant to give up on their respective occupied territories; if the plebiscite is held, the result of majority vote can resolve this issue forever.
2) Presently, the Line of Control (LOC) divides Kashmir into Indian held Kashmir and Azad Kashmir. India, therefore, wants to officially declare LOC as international border. The effective panacea which could be implied here is that New Delhi’s designs should not be allowed to materialise by the international community and status quo must be maintained to avoid further hypersensitivity in the matter.
3) The implantation of Chenab formula is another way out. The formula was suggested in 1960s which outlined the division of Kashmir along the line of Chenab River. Chenab has the potentiality of bringing the majority vicinities of Kashmir into Pakistan’s areas giving the latter an upper hand over India. In this way, the majority of Muslim areas would fall under Pakistan’s borders along with the Muslim areas of Jammu.
4) According to many experts, giving independence to Kashmir valley is the estimable solution to address the genuine complaints.
5) The international community should pay their due heed towards solving this issue. For instance, the resolutions adopted by UN and UNSC should be brought into light. Their effective and sincere adoption can yield desirable results.
6) Pakistan has also shared responsibility to handle this issue skilfully and diplomatically. Islamabad must use the forums of Beijing and Moscow to pressurise India against its cruelty and heinous brutalities in the Indian held Kashmir. The pressure tactics can bring New Delhi on intimate terms with Pakistan to solve Kashmir issue.
The writer is Quetta-based columnist. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Published in Daily Times, May 25th 2018.