By Muhammad Aslam & Naveel Ahmed
ISLAMABAD, Aug 1 (APP):With every passing day, the atrocities by occupation forces intensify in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) but nothing makes the world realize the gravity of the festering human tragedy in the region. India is holding ‘Ghasbana Qabza’ for more than seventy years to suppress Kashmiris who were struggling for their legitimate right to self-determination in line with the resolutions passed by the UNSC from time to time.
After going through the decades-long physical and mental agony, now the people of IIOJK are facing the worst type of repression at the hands of Modi-led fascist government which has stripped the held territory of its special status, on August 5 last year, by revoking Articles 370 and 35-A to change its demographic apartheid. It is quite clear that the New Delhi took this illegal, immoral and unconstitutional action out of frustration as its around-the–clock curfew, communication blackouts, arrests and killings and forceful suppression of protesters fell flat before the indomitable spirit and struggle of the Kashmiri people, whose commitment gets stronger with every intensive move of the so-called secular state.
The world community knows very well the tragic story of the IIOJK where around one million Indian troops are continuously putting the innocent Kashmiris under siege, killing and raping children and women with impunity and denying every fundamental right.
According to authentic figures since 1989 till June 20,2020, Indian occupation forces killed nearly 96,000 Kashmiris including 7, 141 custodial killings, arrested 160,523 civilians, looted/destroyed 110,334 structures, widowed 22,916 women, orphaned 107,793 children and gang-raped/molested 11,207 women.
As per the data gathered by a civil society group of India, a large number of children of 9 to 13 years of age are among the 13,000 civilians arrested by the Indian Army during months-long curfew and lockdown in the occupied territory since 5 August 2019. These children are still imprisoned in northern India and occupied Kashmir. They have not been released even after the outbreak of coronavirus.
Other than Kashmiris’ miseries, the Kashmir issue has another important dimension and that is its potential to invite a nuclear holocaust in the South Asian region. Often, the region goes through intense situation due to long-standing issues, mainly Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan.
Based on the partition plan of 1947, Kashmir should have been part of Pakistan.
Unfortunately, this could not happen due to deep rooted conspiracy. It was India itself that referred the matter to United Nations Security Councils (UNSCS) and offered free and fair plebiscite for people of Kashmir to decide about their future.
However, contrary to it, India gradually renegaded from its own promises and started claiming IIOJK as its ‘integral part. The UNSCS has so far passed almost a dozen of resolutions that the issue would be resolved in accordance with the wishes of people of Kashmir, who want to exercise their legitimate right to self-determination and accession with Pakistan.
The two neighboring countries, now atomic powers, have already fought two full-fledged wars in 1965 and 1971, and their troops stood eyeball to eyeball for several times due to the longstanding core issue of Kashmir. Since the Pulwama incident and Pakistan’s befitting response against the Indian aggression in February, 2019, hardly a day passes without India’s unprovoked firing across the Line of Control (LOC) to target civilian population.
It is an admitted reality that during the February-episode, latest missiles had been aligned and kept ready-to-fire position after smelling anything fishy . . . can anyone imagine the scale of destruction, what will happen, if any provocation triggers a war between the two atomic powers. The consequences will not be limited to just the South Asian region, it would eventually engulf the whole world.
We have been listening to that lasting peace and progress cannot be achieved in the region without resolving the issue of Kashmir. Pakistan has been consistently seeking a peaceful solution to the Kashmir dispute but all efforts have foundered on the bedrock of Indian intransigence and reckless denial of basic right to Kashmiri people for deciding their future and destiny.
Prime Minister Imran Khan on September 27, 2019 in his address to the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York had already exposed India’s reckless policy on Kashmir.
“When we [Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf government] came to power, we swore that we would try to bring peace,” he told the world body.
The premier said India did not respond to Pakistan’s overtures following Modi’s re-election as prime minister and soon it was discovered that India was trying to push Pakistan into the blacklist of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) to bankrupt the country.
“That’s when we realised that there was an agenda and that agenda became obvious on the 5th of August when India went against 11 United Nations Security Council resolutions which say that Kashmir is a disputed territory and the people of Kashmir have the right of self-determination,” he said.
“They actually went against the Indian Constitution. Illegally, they revoked Article 370 which gave Kashmir the special status and [stationed] an extra 180,000 troops there,” said Prime Minister Imran.
Ghulam Nabi Fai, Executive Director Kashmiri American Council, United States, in a statement said “the situation in Kashmir is very alarming and extremely terrifying. I am conscious of the fact if the United Nations and the OIC will not come out of its slumber, the whole nation of Kashmir will be pushed to the brink of extinction.”
“No foreigner can buy land in Kashmir, no foreigner can settle in Kashmir but India passed a domicile law on May 18, 2020 enabling other Indians who were there for last seven years, to get domicile certificate,” Fai said.
“We fear that 1.7 million Indians are going to settle in Kashmir within a year or so. This calls upon the United Nations to redeem their pledge made to Kashmiri people,” he said. “They must understand that Kashmir issue can lead to serious confrontation between India and Pakistan and needs immediate resolution.”
President Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Sardar Masood Khan, addressing a webinar, said the latest happenings in the (IIOJK) should be an eye-opener for the international community. “The people around the globe will have to feel Kashmir through their hearts because what is happening in Kashmir is heart rendering. A big population in a big area is imprisoned and there is no international intervention at all.
He said the occupied territory had been turned into a big prison for the whole population for the last one year, but the UN Security Council and the Western nations which claim to be the custodians of humanitarian laws and the human rights adopted a mysterious silence.
The Indian actions in the held territory amounted to trampling human values, international humanitarian laws and the world order but unfortunately the silence adopted by international community including the United Nations is further encouraging India to commit more crimes against humanity.
It is the legal and moral obligation of international community especially the United Nations to ask India for withdrawal of its August-5 illegal action without any further delay and implement the resolutions passed by the UNSC on Kashmir in letter and spirit, giving the people of IIOJK their just right to self-determination. The Kashmir dispute is an unfinished agenda of partition plan and it will remain so until resolved in accordance with the UNSC resolutions and aspirations of the people of Kashmir.
It is an established fact that Pakistani nation has never left Kashmiri brethren alone in its fight for right to self-determination and has been constantly fighting its case at every fora since the partition of sub-continent in two separate sates of Hindu and Muslims.
Yet again, the people of Pakistan and Kashmir are all ready to knock at the conscience of world community by marking the August 5 as ‘Youm-e-Istehsal,’ the first anniversary of New Delhi’s immoral and unlawful action to change the demographic apartheid of the occupied region in shameful violation of international law.