By Zaheerul Hassan:
Pakistans Foreign minister has invited leading members of the Executive Council of APHC, senior veteran pro-movement leader Syed Ali Gilani and Yasin Malik visit Pakistan from 15 to 22 December 2012. Probably, purpose behind the invitation was to take initiative and paving path for resolution of an old and burning issue of Kashmir through consultative process between the political leadership of Pakistan and India. As usual India has shown her non-serious attitude in settling down of the matter while refusing the visa to the leaders of All Parties Hurriyet Conference Azad Jammu and Kashmir (APHC). It is mentionable here that the APHC has the history of fighting for the rights of Kashmir peacefully.
Kashmir Movement basically started on the day when British have sold Kashmiries territory to Sikh ruler under a contract deed. However the moment which was started in 1931 against Dogra rule is still going on since Kashmiri still deprived of basic human rights.
Indeed, the issue of Jammu and Kashmir is the oldest unresolved issue on the agenda of the United Nations Organization. From January 1948 to May 1964, United Nations Organization passed sixteen resolutions and carried out many debates/discussions concerning Jammu and Kashmir. In this connection UN Security Council Resolutions number 91, 96 of 1951 and UN Security Council Resolution Number 98 of 1952 have very clearly stated plebiscite is the only answer to solve Kashmir Issue. In all of its resolutions, including resolutions of United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP), UN asked India for a fair and impartial plebiscite to decide the future status of Jammu and Kashmir as per the wishes of its subjects.
Late Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru though initially agreed in 1948 and during Sino- India war of 1962 but declined to implement the UN resolutions and abiding by the promise of settling down the Kashmir issue with Pakistan after the war. Both the countries have fought four wars and many bilateral talks including Confidential Building Measures (CBMs) have been held on the issue but India always tried to put the matter at a sideline or tried to delay, contrary to it Pakistan have made serious efforts to crystallize the issue with a view to resolve the conflict under UN resolutions. In this connection, at times Islamabad preferred to discuss others issues of CBMs, but New Delhi never ever shown encouraging reaction in relation to Kashmir problem.
In fact, Kashmir issue always remained very tricky and touchy aspect in internal and external Indo-Pakistan politics. We should admit from the outset that none of the government is in a position to delink Kashmir issue independently from their local traditional politics; therefore win-win solution would be the answer of resolving the issue, i.e. division of Kashmir while taking Kashmiries into confidence.
South Asian security situation is also directly linked with the Kashmir problem due to the history of the wars between India and Pakistan. Moreover regional Geopolitics, where gets stimuli from the interference of super powers there it too influences by the factors like natural resources, geographical features, agro economy, need of hydro generation, strategically vital locations and development of nuclear capability. The regional security gets threatened due to the lust of capture of natural resources by any powerful regional actor and pinching issue like Kashmir. Thus, we can say that resolving of issue between two nuclear sates get more importance because ignition may push the region into nuclear conflict.
India and Pakistan resumed the new phase of negotiations in March, 2009, which were the first structured bilateral talks. But every time, prime ministers and foreign ministers of both the countries have ended their meetings with issuance of positive notes, and vowed that their dialogue would pave the way for the solution of real issues, particularly the core dispute of Kashmir, but the same failed without producing tangible results. Notably, on November 10, 2011, the then Prime Minister Gilani and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh met on the sidelines of the SAARC summit in Maldives. They agreed to improve their bilateral relations by resolving all issues. Quite contrarily, two days after that meeting, Singh stated, I left Gilani in no doubt that if public opinion in India is not satisfied that justice is being done to those responsible to the barbarous attack of Mumbai, it would not be possible to move forward with the peace process.
Pakistans Foreign Minister Khar pointed out that with her counterpart Krishna, she discussed all the outstanding issues such as terrorism, Siachen, Sir Creek, Wullar Barrage, water and especially main dispute of Kashmir.
During the visit of Indias External Affairs Minister S M Krishna to Pakistan, Islamabad and New Delhi signed on September 9, 2012, an agreement of liberalised visa regime and a memorandum of understanding on cultural exchanges but again main issue of Kashmir has not been stressed upon by India.
Pakistans President if Ali Zardari who visited India on April 8, this year met Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. After the meeting, both the leaders stated that the two countries are willing to find pragmatic solutions to a number of issues. Indian Prime Minister has committed that he will visit Islamabad in December 2012 with a view to strengthening CBMs but unfortunately in the first week of December 2012 has shown his inability of visiting Pakistan on the plea of unsuitably environment in Pakistan. Postponing of Indian PM Visit and not permitting APHC leaders to visit Pakistan clear reflect Indian sinister design towards the regional peace.
Indian ruling elite cannot afford oppositions criticism and pressure over Kashmir Issue since it can put Congress party on mat in the coming elections. In this respect, another reason is that the fundamentalist party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) including other similar extremist groups have always put pressure on the Manmohan Singh by opposing the revival of Pak-India dialogue. In August, 2010, BJP had questioned Manmohan Singhs statement on autonomy for Jammu and Kashmir, saying: autonomy for the state would not be tolerated. The pressure of BJP could also be noted from the statement of Indian Prime Minister Singh who said on June 28, 2011 that Pakistan should leave Kashmir alone.
Anyhow, Indian rulers did not allow APHC to visit Pakistan since they were having comprehensions that conference might unveil India brutality in Kashmir. According to the spokes man of All Parties Hurriyet Conference Azad Jammu and Kashmir since 1989 to 15 October 2012, total killing of innocent individuals were 93,801, Custodial Killings in various camps and jails were 6,996. Overall 1, 20,392 individuals have been arrested, structural damaged have been done to the property was 1, 05,955. Moreover 22,764 women have been injured and suffered with severe injuries, 10,042 women have been gang raped or molested and over 1, 07,441 kids have become orphaned.
On December 10 ,2012 Srinagar, A report released by the Research Section of Kashmir Media Service on the occasion of the World Human Rights Day. The report states Indian security forces rendered 22,764 women widowed and 107,441 children orphaned. It also reveled that the troops molested 10,042 women and damaged 105,970 structures. It maintained that the Indian troops and police subjected over 8,000 people to custodial disappearance during the last 23 years. In Occupied State of Jammu & Kashmir (OSJK), Indian army, in their fresh act of state terrorism, martyred two youth in Poonch district.
The Indian armed forces killed the youth during indiscriminate firing at Nangi Tekri in Krishna Ghati area of the district. According to BBC 354- page reort was compiled by the Association of parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) and the international peoples Tribunal on Human Rights and Justice in Indian-Held Kashmir. The reposted reveals that 214 cases of abuse and highlighted the role of officials in the killing of nearly 70 people and disappearances of 8,000 people over two decades The report names military officials of very senior rank as perpetrators. In this regard Srinagr based Kartik Murukutla, a human rights lawyer and one of the authors of the report, said Indias priority in Kashmir was to control the territory, not pursue justice.
It is also notable that hundreds of serving Indian soldiers including senior officers are accused of involvement in widespread human rights abuses in Held Kashmir, daily Guardian reports. The article published in the United Kingdoms leading daily gives reference to report by a team of veteran legal activists in the Himalayan state that names 500 alleged perpetrators ranging from low-ranking policemen to Indian army generals. The writer Jason Burke based in Delhi says the charges relate to incidents occurring throughout more than 20 years of violence pitting armed religious and freedom fighters groups against New Delhis rule in Held Kashmir and include shootings, abductions, torture and rapes.
Debate over Kashmir Resolution stated that India attitude in settlement of the Issue remained quite discouraging since she is reluctant in providing travel documents to most of the Kashmiri leadership. Leaders like Syed Ali Gilani, Maulana Abbas Ansari, Sabbir Ahmad Shah and Mukhtar Ahmad Waza are neither being provided with passports nor being given travel permits to cross LoC.
Therefore, we can say: Firstly India is not sincere towards resolution of Kashmir issue through consultative process, secondly India does not want kashmiri leadership to visit Pakistan and meet Pakistani political leadership and lastly India is aiming at creating divide within the pro movement camp by allowing only few leaders to visit Pakistan.
At the end I would like to say that, World community should put pressure on India for resolution of Kashmir conflict under UN resolutions since it is the only way to establish peace in South Asia. Moreover, Indian political leadership too should change their mindset over Kashmir issue.