NEW YORK, Feb 08 (APP): No solution of the Kashmir dispute will hold unless based on the principles of self-determination, Ghulam Nabi Fai, a prominent Kashmiri leader, has said, as he firmly rejected one of the of-repeated proposals to convert the existing Line-of-Control (LoC) into an international border.
Speaking in a Webinar, he said that making the LoC into a permanent border amounted to sowing a minefield in South Asia that will lead to a nuclear disaster.
“Certainly today, there is no issue is of greater urgency and concern than the Kashmir issue where two nuclear powers, uninhibited by any treaty constraints, glare at each other over this territory,” Fai, who is the Secretary-General of Washington-based World Kashmir Awareness Forum, said during the webinar organized by Erzurum Diplomacy, an Istanbul-based NGO, on Kashmir: What are the options.
Over 60 Academics, university students and journalists attended.
“Jammu and Kashmir alone is the issue that has kept India and Pakistan from normalizing their relations, and it is Kashmir alone that has led to three wars, excessive militarization and nuclearization,” the Kashmiri leader added.
Fai, who was replaying to a question, said that making LoC a permanent border was no solution, as ” Kashmiris wish to emphasize that their land is not a real estate which can be parceled out into two parts but the home of a nation with a history far more compact and coherent than India’s and far longer than Pakistan’s.
“No settlement of their status will hold unless it is explicitly based on the principles of self-determination and erases the so-called line of control, which is in reality the line of conflict.,” he added.
As regards autonomy for Kashmir, Fai called it a non-solution, saying, “here you will have to rely on a provision of the Indian Constitution.”
As constitutions anywhere in the world are subject to amendments, he said, the Parliament of India could delete this provision any time without a debate, like they did on August 5, 2019.
“Kashmiris have had the experience of a limited autonomy, which was first practiced under a personal understanding between (Pandit Jawaharlal) Nehru and (Kashmiri leader Sheikh) Abdullah,” and later provided under Section 370 of the Indian Constitution, only to be eventually whittled away.
Earlier, Fai also appeared in a webinar on “Violations of Human Rights in Kashmir and the Role of Media”, which was organized by Punjab University’s Human Rights Department. Among those who participated were, Professor Dr. Niaz Ahmed Akhtar, Vice Chancellor; Dr. Abida Ashraf, Chairman of the Human Rights Division, Professor Faizul Haq, State University of New York, Dr. Mohammad Khan, International Islamic University and Sheikh Tajammul Islam, Chief Editor of the Kashmir Media Service, Islamabad.
Speakers condemned the atrocities being committed by Indian security forces against the Kashmiri people and called on the world community to help end those abuses. They also called urgent steps for the resolution of the decades-old Kashmir in accordance with the resolutions of the UN Security Council.