Bleeding IIOJK – A dark dimension of history

ISLAMABAD, Aug 2 (APP): Plagued by Indian thralldom, the history of bleeding, screaming and subjugated populace of the Illegally Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) is a big scar on the face of self-acclaimed human rights champions of the world.

The hypocritical approach of the world masters continues to encourage India to play havoc with the innocent people of IIOJK, subjecting them to unprecedented violence, jailing, torturing, raping women, hitting infants with pallets guns and extra-judiciously killing struggling for their right to self-determination.

Instead of pushing India to abide by the United Nations resolutions, the unbelievable silence of the key players in international politics encouraged India to further its agenda of subjugation through revoking articles 370 and 35A of its constitution on August 05, 2019.

By revoking Article 370, the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) regime usurped the special right of IIOJK people for citizenship and ownership of property, besides the fundamental right of residence. This law provided that the citizens from other states could not buy property in the IIOJK and New Delhi had no power to declare a financial emergency in the region.

The BJP also revoked Article 35A which gave the IIOJK legislature full discretionary power to decide who could be the ‘permanent residents of the state. This article also ensured special rights and privileges for the state government’s employment, acquisition of property, settling in the state, right to scholarships, aid provided by the state government, and imposed restrictions on the persons who were not permanent residents.

The history of such acts is long and painful. Starting from October 1947, when Maharaja Hari Singh of Kashmir signed the ‘Instrument of Accession with India, agreeing to transfer three subjects including foreign affairs, defence and communications to New Delhi.

Later on, after the appointment of an interim government by Maharaja with Sheikh Abdullah as its prime minister, the latter along with three colleagues negotiated the special status of Jammu and Kashmir with the Government of India subsequently led to adoption of Article 370 and Article 35A in 1954.

Under the partition formula, the Hindu majority areas had to be with India and the Muslim majority ones with Pakistan. But, Maharaja Hari Singh, against the will of Kashmiri people, decided to annex the state with India making the local population to rise up against his unfair decision.

This also led to a war-like situation between India and Pakistan, and the then Indian Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru took the matter to the UN where the resolution was adopted to give the Kashmiris the right to self-determination.

It was also Jawahar Lal Nehru’s stated policy that “wherever there is a dispute in regard to any territory, the matter should be decided by a referendum or plebiscite of the people concerned. We shall accept the result of such referendum whatever it may be.”

But, neither Nehru not his followers honoured his words and kept shying away from holding the plebiscite. The dispute still lingers on making the IIOJK people to suffer for the last 75 years despite being a Muslim majority region and its economic, cultural and geographic contiguity with the Muslim majority areas of Punjab.

Anyhow, the tension between India and Pakistan in 1948 ended up in the demarcation of Line of Control, a temporary settlement to the dispute till its resolution through the plebiscite. In this settlement, Pakistan was left with territory thinly populated, relatively inaccessible and economically underdeveloped as compared to the developed and thickly populated area falling under Indian control.

The IIOJK people waited long for the plebiscite but after its denial by India, they waged an indigenous struggle. But India instead of listening to their just demand, deployed a strong military force in the name of maintaining law and order. Gradually the number rose to over 900,000 making it clear that it was only for quelling the struggle of IIOJK people for their right to self-determination.

Many renowned Kashmiri leaders were jailed, tortured and subjected to death in prisons or in fake encounters, which reflects that India could inflict every agony on the innocent people but would not to go for the plebiscite.

The number of initiatives, parleys and engagements were seen during the previous decades between India, Pakistan and Kashmiri leaders, but the main destination of holding a plebiscite could never be reached.

The hegemony goes on subjecting the people to brutalities and their genocide well known to the world nations, that adopted double standards whenever the Kashmir dispute was brought in front of them for resolution.

The Pakistani side from day one had been striving for a peaceful resolution of the Kashmir dispute, but whenever any headway was made in the parleys, it was followed by unprovoked shelling by the Indian forces along the Line of Control (LoC) or other intrigues inside Pakistan.

Shelling across the LoC continued intermittently till a cease-fire agreement was reached in 2004. Tensions had temporarily diminished for a while as both the countries desired resolution of the disputes through dialogue.

Limited passenger bus service began in 2005 between Srinagar and Muzaffarabad and after the earthquake in the region, both the sides allowed transportation of goods across the LoC, indentifying routes for cross-border trade.

Despite these advances, tensions continued to erupt periodically due to the Indian forces’ unprovoked shelling across the LoC and other subjugating overtures.

The situation tuned worse after the BJP won the 2014 election and started promoting ‘Hindutva’ ideology, strongly favouring the union of Kashmir with India.

The Kashmiri leaders and followers were arrested, tortured and killed, including Burhan Wani that reinforced the freedom struggle. The BJP and the Indian security forces launched fresh operation against the Kashmiris to assert its control on the IIOJK.

Seen through the annals of history, India had always been resorted to heighten tensions in South Asia and the latest of the series was intrusion of Indian fighter jets into Pakistani airspace across the LoC.

This February 2019 adventure of Indian Air Force cost it with the loss of two fighter jets shot down by the Pakistan Air Force and capturing its Wing Commander Abhi Nandan, who was later released by Pakistan as a goodwill gesture.

Few months later, the BJP once again emerged victorious in India’s general election and this time it went beyond all diplomatic and democratic norms to revoke constitutional provisions that granted special status to the IIOJK.

The IIOJK started bleeding once again as India has added another chapter to its history of cruelties against innocent people.

The issue is still there on the UN agenda, but the world conscience continues to sleep sound making the Kashmiri people to suffer the agonies of Indian yoke.