(Part II) HOW LONG THE BLOODY WAR OVER KASHMIR ? PAKISTAN IS ENGAGED IN COLD PROXY WAR WITH INDIA OVER KASHMIR VALLEY!
THE PROBLEM OF RISING BLOODY ATTACKS BY PAKISTANI TERRORISTS INFILTRATING IN INDIA, IN RELATION TO THE ISSUE OF ‘WHICH’ OF THE TWO COUNTRIES SHOULD BE IN POSSESSION OF KASHMIR, ESPECIALLY THE PAKISTAN OCCUPIED KASHMIR (Henceforth referred to as POK),AND THE KASHMIR VALLEY, HAS BECOME A SERIOUS DEFENSE ISSUE THESE DAYS, WORSENING DAY BY DAY!
SO MUCH SO, THAT THE BEAUTIFUL KASHMIR VALLEY, THAT WAS FAMOUS
SINCE THE MOGHUL PERIOD AS THE ‘VALLEY OF FLOWERS’ AND
‘PARADISE ON EARTH’ , IS FAST TURNING INTO A ‘VALLEY OF TERRROR’!
THIS DOWNHILL PROCESS STARTED EVER SINCE THE LAST MAHARAJAH OF KASHMIR, RAJA HARI SINGH, GOT INDEPENDENCE FOR HIS STATE FROM THE BRITISH. HE WAS ALSO GIVEN THE FREEDOM TO DECIDE WHETHER HE WANTED TO REMAIN INDEPENDENT, OR ACCEDE HIS KINGDOM TO EITHER INDIA OR PAKISTAN. ACCORDINGLY, RAJA HARI SINGH, in consultation with his Prime Minister, Sheikh Abdullah, DECIDED TO REMAIN INDEPENDENT. HE IS SAID TO HAVE INFORMED INDIA AND PAKISTAN ABOUT HIS ‘STANDSTILL’ PLAN, WHICH INDIA DID NOT APPROVE OF.
IT HAD PERHAPS NOT OCCURRED TO THE MAHARAJAH THEN THAT THE SAFETY OF HIS REALM UPTIL INDEPENDENCE WAS OWING TO THE FACT THAT HIS STATE WAS UNDER THE POWERFUL BRITISH COLONIAL RULE, WHILE THE REGION OF PAKISTAN WAS A PART OF INDIA, NOT AN INDEPENDENT MUSLIM STATE, TILL THE END OF THE BRITISH RULE;
AND THAT THE PAKISTANIS COULD GO TO ANY EXTENT TO GET HOLD ON KASHMIR, WHICH IS ALSO A MUSLIM MAJORITY STATE, ONCE THEY AND KASHMIR BOTH GOT INDEPENDENT STATUS !
AS WAS TO BE EXPECTED, THE PAKISTANI PEOPLE WERE NOT HAPPY WITH THE DECISION OF THE MAHARAJAH OF KASHMIR TO REMAIN INDEPENDENT, FOR THEY WANTED HIM TO ACCEDE HIS KINGDOM, WHICH HAD MUSLIM MAJORITY, TO PAKISTAN,WHICH THEY HAD APPARENTLY MADE KNOWN TO THE RULER OF KASHMIR SOON AFTER INDEPENDENCE. BUT BOTH MAHARAJAH HARI SINGH AND SHEIKH ABDULLAH,THE PRIME MINISTER OF FREE KASHMIR, DID NOT WANT TO ACCEDE KASHMIR TO EITHER PAKISTAN OR INDIA, of which Kashmir was never was a part AND DESIRED TO MAINTAIN THEIR INDEPENDENT STATUS.To make things worse, Sheikh Abdullah, the Prime Minister of Kashmir, started making regular contact with Pandit Nehru, PM of India, to topple the Maharajah, which made Pakistan suspicious about the Intentions of India and the Kashmir rulers.
THEREFORE,SHORTLY AFTER INDEPENDENCE, EXTREMIST PAKISTANI TRIBAL REBELS, BACKED SURREPTITIOUSLY BY THE PAKISTANI ARMY, and part of the Maharajah’s own Muslim Armymen, who were not happy with Raja Hari Singh owing to his haughty behaviour (due to which his young prince Karan Singh was also said to be in awe of Him), INVADED AND OCCUPIED THE NORTHERN AND WESTERN PARTS OF KASHMIR AND JAMMU, AND PARTS OF LADAKH FROM 22nd OCTOBER 1947 BY TERROR AND MILITARY FORCE, AND DROVE THE KASHMIRI HINDUS OUT, AS THE PAKISTANIS WERE NOT AGREEABLE WITH THE MAHARAJAH’s DECISION TO RULE INDEPENDENTLY AS A HINDU KING OVER A MUSLIM MAJORITY STATE, AND WANTED TO TEACH HIM A LESSON !
WHEN THIS HAPPENED, THE MAHARAJAH SENT A REQUEST IMMEDIATELY TO THE BRITISH GOVERNOR GENERAL FOR HELP, WHO DIRECTED HIM TO APPROACH PANDIT NEHRU, THE FIRST PRIME MINISTER OF INDIA, TO SEND THE INDIAN ARMY FOR PROTECTION OF KASHMIR. HOWEVER, PANDIT NEHRU,INSTEAD OF DEPUTING THE INDIAN ARMY FOR HIS RESCUE IMMEDIATELY, SHREWDLY TOOK ADVANTAGE OF THE MAHARAJAH’s PRECARIOUS SITUATION AND DESPAIR, BUT IN A MORE OFFICIAL AND SOPHISTICATED WAY THAN THE PAKISTANIS, AND DECLINED TO INTERFERE UNLESS AND UNTIL THE RAJA SIGNED A TREATY OF ACCESSION OF HIS STATE WITH THE LAST BRITISH GOVERNOR GENERAL WHO WAS OFFICIATING FOR THE INDIAN GOVT.
THE MAHARAJAH DID SO ULTIMATELY IN PANIC,BUT AS LATE AS ON26TH OCTOBER 1947, THE FIFTH DAY OF THE INVASION, WHEN THE PAKISTANI TROOPS HAD ALREADY CAPTURED A LARGE AREA OF THE STATE, AND WERE JUST A FEW KMS. AWAY FROM SRINAGAR, AS ALSO KILLED MANY PEOPLE! (It is said that Nehru contrived with Sheikh Abdulla to delay the accession of Kashmir to India till the Maharajah was forced to step down appointing his son, Karan Singh, as his Regent and form a Constituent Assembly with Sheikh as Prime Minister).
SOON AFTER THE MAHARAJAH HAD SIGNED THE ‘INSTRUMENT OF ACCESSION’, THE INDIAN ARMY REACHED SRINAGAR, ON 27th Oct. 1947 AND DROVE OUT THE PAKISTANI TRIBAL PATHAN INVADERS WHO HAD JUST ENTERED IT. HOWEVER IT COULD NOT EXPEL THEM FROM THE NORTHERN AREAS OF THE STATE, VIZ. GILGIT-BALTISTAN, AND THE PART OF KASHMIR and JAMMU WHICH THEY HAD ALREADY OCCUPIED, AS THE SITUATION HAD BECOME ‘UNCONTROLLABLE’ BY THEN! ALSO, SHEIKH ABDULLAH IS BELIEVED TO HAYE TOLD PANDIT NEHRU THAT THE NORTHERN AREA OF GILGIT-BALTISTAN WAS ‘NOT KASHMIRI’though annexed by British to the Maharajah’s state.
[IT IS NOT THAT THE MAHARAJAH OF KASHMIR HAD NOT PLEADED IMMEDIATELY TO THE BRITISH VICEROY/ GOVERNOR GENERAL OF INDIA(WHO LATER SIGNED THE TREATY OF OF KASHMIR WITH THE MAHARAJAH) FOR THE PROTECTION OF THEIR KINGDOM, And TO DIRECT THE INDIAN ARMY TO HELP THE KASHMIR ARMY TO CONTROL AND PUSH BACK THE PAK INVADERS, WHILE HE WAS STILL THE OFFICIATING AUTHORITY FOR INDIA and PAK, BUT THE GOVERNOR GENERAL WAS OBVIOUSLY IN FAVOUR OF NEHRU, SO HE ASKED THE MAHARAJAH TO APPROACH NEHRU FOR HELP, WHO FORCED HIM TO ACCEDE KASHMIR TO INDIA TO GET HIS MILITARY HELP. ON THE OTHER HAND, THE GG SIGNED THE INSTRUMENT OF ACCESSION WITH THE CONTRARY’Remark’ ON THE TREATY OF ACCESSION OF KASHMIR TO INDIA(SOMETHING THAT HE HAD NOT DONE FOR ANY OTHER PRINCELY STATE)THAT THE FINAL DECISION BECOMING A PART OF THE INDIAN UNION SHOULD BE TAKEN BY ‘PLEBISCITE’, that is, BY ASSESSING THE WISHES OF THE KASHMIRI PEOPLE, JUST BECAUSE THE HINDU RAJAH’s SUBJECTS WERE MOSTLY MUSLIMS, THOUGH KASHMIR HAD NOT YET BECOME A DEMOCRATIC STATE TILL THEN, BUT WAS STILL A PRINCELY STATE THAT HAD JUST BECOME FREE OF THE BRITISH RULE, THAT IS, BECOME A FULLFLEDGED KINGDOM AT THAT PART OF TIME. SO THE MAHARAJAH’s ASSENT FOR ACCESSION SHOULD HAVE BEEN TREATED AS THE FINAL WORD WITHOUT PLEBICITE. THUS, THE LAST GG PLAYED A ‘DOUBLE GAME’ WITH THE PEOPLE OF KASHMIR AS WELL AS WITH BOTH INDIA AND PAKISTAN AS PER THE BRITISH POLICY OF ‘DIVIDE AND RULE’!
TO ENABLE THE ‘STATUS QUO’ TO BE MAINTAINED FOR CONDUCTING THE PLEBISCITE AT ANY SUITABLE TIME, IT ALSO BECAME IMPERATIVE TO ACCORD THE KASHMIR STATE ‘SPECIAL SEPARATE STATUS’, SO the ARTICLE no. 370 had to be added to the INDIAN CONSTITUTION to ensure the same.RAJA HARI SINGH AND SHEIKH ABDULLAH TOO WANTED THE ARTICLE, AS THEY DID NOT WANT TO MERGE WITH INDIA, BUT WANTED TO BECOME INDEPENDENT SOONER OR LATER. HENCE, THE ARTICLE 370 HAD TO BE ADDED TO THE CONSTITUTION OF INDIA, TO RETAIN THEIR TRUST AND PREVENT THEM FROM BREAKING AWAY BY WITHDRAWING THE ‘IOA’, AS RAJA HARI SINGH IS SAID TO HAVE THREATENED NEHRU!
BECAUSE OF THIS NONINVOLVEMENT POLICY ADOPTED BY THE LAST BRITISH VICEROY-CUM-GOVERNOR GENERAL OF INDIA, IMMEDIATELY AFTER INDEPENDENCE, AND SUBSEQUENTLY BY THE UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL WHICH WAS BROUGHT IN TO SOLVE THE INDO-PAK CONFLICT BY PANDIT NEHRU, THE PAKISTANIS AND THEIR GOVERNMENT HAVE BEEN EMBOLDENED TO REFUSE TO VACATE THE CAPTURED REGIONS OF THE JAMMU AND KASHMIR STATE TILL NOW, DESPITE THE MAHARAJAH’S SIGNING THE ACCESSION TREATY WITH THE GOVERNOR GENERAL OF INDIA LONG AGO ON OCTOBER 26, 1947 FOR PROTECTION OF HIS STATE, AND THE ORDER BY UNSC TO PAKISTAN TO VACATE THE TERRITORY IN KASHMIR OCCUPIED BY THEM BY FORCE, AS A PREREQUISITE FOR PLEBICITE. INSTEAD THEY HAVE STARTED MAKING FURTHER INCURSIONS INTO INDIAN ADMINISTERED KASHMIR (Henceforth referred to as IAK) AND HAVE DRIVEN OUT MANY KASHMIRI PANDITS FROM KASHMIR VALLEY TO TAKE SHELTER IN JAMMU AND ELSEWHERE IN INDIA.
OF COURSE, INDIA IN RETALIATION HAS SWORN TO RETRIEVE THE ‘PAK OCCUPIED KASHMIR’ AND OTHER PARTS CAPTURED BY PAK, BY MILITARY FORCE, SOONER OR LATER. HOWEVER, THIS HAS NOT DETERRED THE PAKISTANI TERRORISTS FROM MAKING REPEATED ATTACKS ON THE KASHMIRI AND INDIAN CIVILIANS OF IAK AND ACROSS THE BORDER TO THIS DAY. THUS A DEADLOCK HAS BEEN CREATED ESPECIALLY OVER POSSESSION OF PAK OCCUPIED KASHMIR, LEADING TO MUCH BLOODSHED DUE TO NONE OF THE SIDES WANTING TO RELENT OVER THIS ‘BONE OF CONTENTION’!
AS SUCH, A SIGNIFICANT NUMBER OF PEOPLE OF INDIA HAVE BECOME WEARY AND STARTED FEELING NOW, THAT INDIA SHOULD RATHER ‘STOP FIGHTING’ FOR GAINING HOLD OVER PAK OCCUPIED KASHMIR FOR the sake of BILATERAL PEACE !
For AS PER the HISTORY of KASHMIR, IT NEVER REALLY BELONGED TO INDIA BEFORE INDEPENDENCE, AS IT WAS NOT A PART OF BRITISH INDIA, BUT AN INDEPENDENT PRINCELY STATE DIRECTLY UNDER THE BRITISH CROWN, WHOSE LAST RULER HAD NO INTEREST IN MERGING WITH INDIA, AND HAD SIGNED THE TREATY OF ACCESSION TO INDIA ONLY UNDER DURESS, BECAUSE OF THE THREAT TO HIS KINGDOM BY THE INVASION OF PAKISTANIS INTO ITS TERRITORY.
THE DEMAND OF THE MAHARAJAH AND THE PRIME MINISTER OF KASHMIR
SHEIKH ABDULLAH FOR GIVING SPECIAL STATUS AND MAINTAINING THE AUTONOMY OF THE JAMMU-KASHMIR STATE EVEN AFTER ITS SIGNING THE ACCESSION TREATY WITH THE INDIAN GOVERNMENT VIDE THE INTERPOLATION OF ARTICLE 370 IN THE INDIAN CONSTITUTION, CLEARLY SHOWS THAT THEIR INTEREST FROM THE VERY BEGINNING WAS TO REMAIN SEPARATE FROM INDIA AND IN RECLAIMING THEIR INDEPENDENCE AFTER THE THREAT FROM PAKISTAN SUBSIDED. THEREFORE, SHEIKH ABDULLAH SET ABOUT TO REGAIN’SEPARATE KASHMIR’ SOON AFTER THE DISSOLUTION OF THE PRINCELY STATE OF KASHMIR (OF WHICH RAJA HARI SINGH WAS THE TUTELARY KING, AND DR. KARAN SINGH, HIS YUVRAJ AND REGENT) IN JULY 1952. BUT THE INDIAN PRIME MINISTER, PANDIT NEHRU, WHO WAS KEEN ON KEEPING KASHMIR, HIS NATIVE STATE, WITH INDIA, DISAPPROVED OF IT, AND JAILED THE SHEIKH, HIS LONGSTANDING FRIEND, TO KEEP HIM UNDER PREVENTIVE DETENTION, IN AUGUST 1953.
HOWEVER, AS OF PRESENT, IT IS EVIDENT FROM THE RECENT ELECTIONS IN JAMMU- KASHMIR STATE THAT IT IS ONLY THE SEPARATIST GROUP OF THE MUSLIM PEOPLE OF THE KASHMIR VALLEY WHO ASPIRE MOST FOR SEPARATION FROM INDIA, UNDER THE INSTIGATION AND BACKING OF PAKISTAN AND TERRORIST ORGANISATIONS, NOT SO MUCH THOSE OF JAMMU/LADAKH!
(A) HISTORY OF KASHMIR:-
Coming to the facts stated above,THE KASHMIR VALLEY AND JAMMU-KASHMIR STATE BEFORE INDEPENDENCE, WAS A TOTALLY SEPARATE TERRITORY UNDER THE BRITISH CROWN, which was taken by them from the earlier Sikh ruler Ranjit Singh on lease, AND NOT A PART OF ‘BRITISH INDIA’. ( Ref. ‘Instrument of Accession-Wikipedia ).
As per Ancient History, the Kashmir valley derived its name from the sage Kashyapa, and is said have been ruled first by the Naga King Neela, who permitted the Kashmiri Pandits to settle in the land after the latter’s migration to the valley from the banks of the Saraswati valley in Punjab(now Haryana part) when the river started drying up.
Thereafter, it came to be under several Hindu and Buddhist rulers one after another, including the Kambojas, Panchalas, Uttarkurus, Mauryas, Kushans, White Huns, and Tibetans, followed by the Moghuls and Muslim Kings from the 14th to early 19th century, and was under the Afghan Pashtun Durrani rulers with a mostly Muslim population, when it was conquered by King Ranjit Singh of the SIKH Empire of Punjab in 1820 AD. Ranjit Singh leased the valley to the BRITISH under the Anglo-Sikh Treaty of Amritsar. The British also acquired the possession of Gilgit- Baltistan, and later ‘sold’ the rights of the whole acquired land in 1846 AD to Raja Gulab Singh, the Dogra King of Jammu(which was also a part of the Sikh kingdom ruled earlier by Raja Ranjit Singh, subsequently passed on to Raja Gulab Singh, and was independent of the other Princely states). That is how it came to be a Muslim majority kingdom under a Hindu ruler. Raja Gulab Singh conquered and annexed the Kingdom of Ladakh, a small Kingdom in Tibet, to his State of Jammu-Kashmir subsequently.
THUS ONLY THE KASHMIR VALLEY HAS HAD A PREDOMINANTLY MUSLIM POPULATION, (about 95%)WITH MORE PATHANS(SUNNI MUSLIMS) THAN SHIA MUSLIMS, AND A HINDU MINORITY INCLUDING MOSTLY KASHMIRI PANDITS(5.24%) according to the figures of 1941 Census. The percentage of Muslims in the whole state of Jammu-Kashmir was 74%, while that of Hindus including Kashmiri Pandits, the Dogras who were the ruling clan, and Sikhs in the state was 23.72 which has risen to 28.4 in the 2011 census against 67% of Muslims.This percentage of Hindus entitles them to at least 3 districts, which as per the wishes of the displaced Pandits are (1)Anantnag, housing the Amarnath Shrine and the Pahalgam to Chandanwadi route to it and other Hindu pilgrimage places in the valley, (2)Srinagar, where too there are many Pandits and religious sites;3 of the 16 tehsils of Baramulla district or at least those regions of the district where there are a significant number of Pandits and some Sikhs living, that is,Baramulla,Sopore with Wular lake, and Pattan, and (3)Ganderbal with Manasbal lake,Tulmul and Sonamarg, as well as Awantipora city of the Valley for PANUN KASHMIR, considering that they will have to allow any of the local original Muslims not wanting to separate from India but live there peacefully with the Hindus, to stay among them. The Separatists can be given the other 7 districts of the valley, plus the Muslim dominated district of Poonch of Indian Jammu,and may be Rajouri for their Independent Kashmir.
ON THE OTHER HAND, JAMMU WHICH WAS A SIKH and later,DOGRA KINGDOM, HAS A HINDU AND SIKH MAJORITY over 66%, while LADAKH HAS ALWAYS HAD A BUDDHIST MAJORITY AND A LESSER, MOSTLY SHIA MUSLIM POPULATION. THE HINDU MINORITY IN THE WHOLE J&K STATE WAS 23.72%(nearly 1/4th)UPTO 1947, and 5% of the population in the Kashmir valley.It was reduced to some extent due to the banishment and massacre of large numbers of them from Pak Occupied Kashmir in 1947-48, and further down to 1.6/2% in the Valley in January 1990 when around 100,000 more Pandits were forced to flee for their life from the valley. The exiled Pandits are living as refugees in ill-equipped tents in Jammu and Delhi since then, and have appealed to the Indian Government to carve out an enclave, ‘Panun Kashmir ‘ in the valley for their separate and safe residence, for them to return and resettle in the Kashmir valley, on which they have full domicile and legal right. FOR, THOUGH THE KASHMIR VALLEY MAY NOT HAVE BEEN A PART OF INDIA ALWAYS, THE PANDITS OF KASHMIR HAVE ALWAYS BEEN A PART OF THE VALLEY, EVEN BEFORE THE ADVENT OF THE MUSLIMS. HENCE THE KASHMIR VALLEY BELONGS AS MUCH TO THE PANDITS AS TO THE MUSLIMS, OR PERHAPS MORE. SO IT WAS VERY WRONG AND UNJUSTIFIED OF THE INVADING PAKISTANI MUSLIMS WHO WERE OUTSIDERS THEMSELVES, TO DRIVE THE ORIGINAL RESIDENTS, THE PANDITS, OUT OF THEIR OWN HOMELAND!
FORTUNATELY, THERE IS NO TENSION BETWEEN THE BUDDHISTS AND MUSLIMS OF LADAKH, AS THERE IS BETWEEN THE MUSLIMS AND THE HINDUS IN THE KASHMIR VALLEY.
HENCE THE COMMUNAL RIGHT OF THE KASHMIRI MUSLIMS OF THE STATE IS LIMITED MOSTLY TO KASHMIR VALLEY, NOT SO MUCH TO JAMMU/LADAKH! THEREFORE, EVEN IF THEY WIN THEIR BATTLE FOR ‘SEPARATE KASHMIR’ ANYTIME IN FUTURE, THE INDIAN GOVERNMENT SHOULD ENSURE THAT THEY DO NOT APPROPRIATE TO THEMSELVES THE WHOLE OF THE JAMMU-KASHMIR STATE, BUT ONLY THE KASHMIR VALLEY, THAT ALSO NOT MORE THAN 70% OF THE VALLEY, AND IF INDIAN GOVT. AGREES, 1-2 OF THE MUSLIM MAJORITY DISTRICTS OF JAMMU. SO THE SEPARATISTS CAN BE ALLOWED TO KEEP ABOUT 8 out of the 10 DISTRICTS OF THE VALLEY AND THE TWO MUSLIM MAJORITY BORDER DISTRICTS OF INDIAN ADMINISTERED POONCH AND RAJOURI IN JAMMU, AND, IF THEY WISH, MERGE THEIR PART WITH THE REGION ALREADY OCCUPIED AND CONTROLLED BY THE PAKISTANIS IN 1947, VIZ. ‘AZAD JAMMU-KASHMIR’, WHICH COVERS 10 DISTRICTS COMPRISING THE DISTRICTS OF MUZAFFARABAD, MIRPUR, AND 8 OTHER DISTRICTS INCLUDING A PART OF POONCH, TO FORM ‘A SMALL INDEPENDENT KASHMIR’, as shown in the’Scenario No.5 of the Article’Future of Kashmir?’ by BBC News(UK), BUT, (EXCLUDING the part of the Kashmir Valley TO THE NORTH AND EAST OF THE RIVER JHELUM,I.e. the 3 districts of Ganderbal, Srinagar, Anantnag, and 3 of the 16 tehsils of Baramulla Dist., as well as Awantipora city of the Pulwama Dist., of the total 10 districts of the Kashmir valley, which contain the places of Religious and Pilgrimage importance for Hindus, like the region of the AMARNATH CAVE with the routes leading to it, via PAHALGAM in ANANTNAG, as per the request of the Kashmiri Pandits, which may be given ‘Union Territory ‘Status’ alongwith JAMMU-LADAKH, if agreed upon).
THAT WOULD BE FAIR ENOUGH, BECAUSE MOST OF THE ORIGINAL RESIDENT HINDUS AND KASHMIRI PANDITS HAD BEEN FORCED TO LEAVE THE KASHMIR VALLEY AND LANDED PROPERTY IN 1947 and 1990; AND NOW THE KASHMIRI SEPARATISTS ARE NOT WILLING TO LET THE GOVERNMENT CREATE EVEN ANY SEPARATE TOWNSHIPS IN THE VALLEY FOR ‘PANUN KASHMIR’, FOR REHABILITATION OF THE PANDITS, as they insist that the latter should live in their midst, not separately, AND HAVE BECOME TROUBLESOME FOR THE INDIAN GOVT.SO PERHAPS IT IS BETTER TO LET THEM EITHER SEPARATE FROM INDIAN ADMINISTRATION OR HAVE AN AUTONOMOUS SEPARATE AND CALCULATED PART OF THE KASHMIR VALLEY AND OF JAMMU. SOME OF THE ORIGINAL MUSLIMS OF THE STATE MAY WANT TO STAY ON IN INDIA RATHER THAN GO WITH THE SEPARATISTS WHO ARE MOSTLY FUNDAMENTALIST PAKISTANI AND AFGHAN PATHAN INVADERS. HENCE THE SEPARATISTS CANNOT BE GRANTED POSSESSION OF THE WHOLE VALLEY CORRESPONDING TO THE TOTAL ORIGINAL OR PRESENT STREGTH OF MUSLIMS IN IT, BUT ABOUT 70%, WITH A PART OF JAMMU IN ADDITION TO MAKE UP. The Pandits are afraid to return to live once more amidst the Muslims because of their traumatic experiences at the time when they were made to leave the valley. SO THEY ARE ENTITLED TO HAVE THE RIGHT OVER AT LEAST THE 3 above mentioned DISTRICTS of the Valley of Kashmir (and Awantipora city) AS PER THEIR WISH, WHICH SHOULD REMAIN WITH INDIA IN CASE OF ACCEPTANCE OF THE DEMAND OF KASHMIRI SEPARATISTS FOR SEPARATION OF KASHMIR VALLEY FROM INDIA !
(IF THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE TO THE KASHMIRI MUSLIM SEPARATISTS, THEY MIGHT AS WELL FORGET ABOUT BECOMING FREE AND SEPARATE FROM INDIA EITHER BY PLEBISCITE OR BY NEGOTIATION WITH THE INDIAN GOVERNMENT, OR EVEN BECOME AN AUTONOMOUS REGION OF INDIA, AND WILL HAVE TO RESIGN THEMSELVES TO STAY UNDER THE STRICT ADMINISTRATIVE CONTROL OF INDIA AND ITS ARMY, WITH THE PROVISIONS OF ARTICLE 370 FOREVER. FOR THE INDIAN GOVT. WILL NOT AGREE TO SURRENDER THE WHOLE OF THE VALLEY,VALUABLE FOR ITS TOURISM AND PILGRIMAGE INTEREST, TO THE MUSLIM SEPARATISTS UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES!)
POST INDEPENDENCE ERA:-
AFTER INDEPENDENCE from the British Rule in AUGUST 1947,PAKISTAN through its TRIBALS population backed by its Army,USURPED the NORTHERN part of the KASHMIR valley, some parts of Jammu,and Ladakh , as also the Northern Areas of GILGIT- BALTISTAN and AKSAI CHIN of Ladakh, BECAUSE OF RESENTMENT AGAINST THE MAHARAJAH OF KASHMIR FOR NOT ACCEDING HIS STATE TO PAKISTAN DESPITE ITS POPULATION HAVING MUSLIM MAJORITY, and as per their policy of ‘Jiski Lathi, Usiki Bhains’!
The Government of India under Nehru’s Prime Ministership, had however proclaimed to have adopted the principles of Democracy and Secularism. Also, Pandit Nehru was a friend of Sheikh Abdullah, PM of Kashmir so he did not want to use force or war to get possession of Kashmir against the wishes of the Kashmiris BUT to use strategy to make Raja Hari Singh sign the Treaty of Accession of J-K state with the Governor General of India, which he did on 26 Oct. 1947. Even after that, however,the INDIAN ARMY COULD RESCUE and TAKE custody of ONLY WHATEVER was LEFT of the original state, that is, SRINAGAR AND THE MAJOR PART OF JAMMU AND LADAKH (Because of the capture of the northern parts of the Kashmir Valley by the Pakistanis, alongwith Gilgit-Baltistan and Aksai Chin of Ladakh,and part of some districts of Jammu I.e part ofPoonch). Also, it is said that by the time the Indian Army was requested to intervene, the situation in the parts occupied by the Pathans of Pakistan had become uncontrollable, and so, could not be retrieved!
Hence the IMPORTANCE OF determining the EXACT DATE on which the Pakistanis captured parts of the State, and that on which the Raja acceded his Kingdom of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh to India and requested that the Indian Army be sent to Srinagar to save it and the remaining part of the Valley and the State, to know whether India had acquired any right over it until or before the Pak invasion. However, the chronology of the events shows that UNFORTUNATELY, THE INVASION HAPPENED AT A TRICKY POINT (that Is, AFTER THE INDEPENDENCE OF THE STATE OF JAMMU, KASHMIR, LADAKH FROM BRITISH DOMINION, and BEFORE THE TREATY OF ACCESSION OF THE STATE MADE BY THE MAHARAJAH WITH INDIA, AND ITS ATTENDANT ARTICLE 370, ALONGWITH the CONDITION OF PLEBISCITE, WHILE IT WAS SOLELY THE MAHARAJAH’s KINGDOM). SO THE NORTHERN PART OF KASHMIR AS WELL AS GILGIT-BALTISTAN AND AKSAI CHIN WERE ALREADY OCCUPIED BY THE PAKISTANIS ON 22 OCTOBER 1947, WELL BEFORE the INDIAN ARMY was authorised to enter Srinagar on the Maharajah’s behalf on 27th October 1947)! AksaiChin and the Trans-Karakoram Pass was handed over by Pakistan to China later in 1963,after the Indo China War of 1962.
As a matter of fact, the last King of Kashmir, Raja Hari Singh Dogra Himself did not want to merge Kashmir with India, but wanted to remain Free. Therefore, though Independence was granted by the British to Kashmir in August 1947, at the same time as to India, along with the choice of either remaining independent or Acceding the State to India or Pakistan, His Majesty as well as His Prime Minister Sheikh Abdullah, chose to remain Independent, and acceded to India only at the ‘Eleventh Hour’, on 26th Oct. 1947(After the Pathan Muslims of Pakistan had already ‘Grabbed’ the Northern part of the Kashmir Valley and the Gilgit-Baltistan region, as well as AksaiChin which was a part of prepartition Ladakh, and was about to occupy Srinagar, the State’s Summer Capital), for getting the help of the Indian Army to drive out the Pakistani Invaders, to prevent their swallowing Kashmir totally. Then too, it was only to ‘accede’ the remaining part of the Kashmir valley to India ‘only partially’, subject to the Article 370, for its Administrative, Financial and Military Help , Not for merger!
So the LOSS of POK was actually the PRIVATE LOSS OF THE MAHARAJA OF KASHMIR, RAJA HARI SINGH(AND OF HIS SCION Dr. Karan Singh) technically, as it was a part of Their INDEPENDENT Kingdom before the Rajah signed the Instrument of Accession of his Princely State to India, and Not the Legal loss or fault of India (though the Pakistanis too did not have any Legal or Moral Right over the region which they occupied by force). For India could not seize it Before the Treaty of Accession, as it was against its policy to ‘conquer Kashmir by force’, the way Pakistan did.
Yet, as per the instructions of the UN Security Council, the Pakistanis are supposed to clear out of the areas occupied by them, so that the atmosphere in the state becomes normal for holding the Plebiscite, which they have not done till now. Hence, the State of Kashmir has been reduced to being “Nobody’s child”!
Even so, it was an unfortunate and universally objectionable event, because the Pakistani Pathan Tribals not only conquered much of Kashmir, but thereafter forced the Kashmiri Pandits to flee from theirHomeland!
So, there are practically No Kashmiri Pandits left in POK now, as those who were living there before Independence were forced by the Pakistanis to quit and flee for their life to Srinagar and Jammu during the first Indo-Pak War
in 1947-48, and they are not likely to want to go back there, even if a compromise is arrived at for their return with Pakistan, because of their past horrifying experience at the time of their First Exodus from there. They are wary of returning to Srinagar in Indian Administered Kashmir Valley too, after their equally shattering Second Exodus from there in January 1990 !
The figures state that around 300,000 Pandits had to flee for their safety from the Kashmir valley, taking the numbers of the 1947-48 and 1990 exodus together, and according to the Pandits, about 3000 Kashmiri Pandits perished in the process! (Some people say that this is an exaggerated estimate, and that the real number of the Mortalities was 650 or so. However, even this is higher than the figure of 219 quoted by the Govt.)
THUS, THERE IS NO NEED FOR INDIA TO MAKE IT A PERSONAL ‘EGO ISSUE’ TO RECOVER THE LAND LOST TO PAKISTAN DURING THE REIGN OF RAJA HARI SINGH DUE TO HIS MISTAKE OF HOLDING ON TO IT FOR TOO LONG, TO MAINTAIN HIS INDEPENDENT MONARCHY,WITHOUT DELIBERATING ON WHETHER HIS ARMY WAS CAPABLE OF DRIVING OUT THE PAKISTANI INVADERS ON ITS OWN.
AS FOR THE KASHMIRI PANDITS,THEY ARE AFRAID TO GO BACK TO THE VALLEY ANYWAY!
In fact, India ‘s subsequent claim to POK and continuing proclamation of its intent to take back that part by Army force is making the Pakis still more aggressive, and is becoming the cause of Gory Bloodshed of many innocent Hindus and Muslims in Indian Administered Kashmir also, as well as of the Army Jawans deputed in Kashmir ! IS ALL THE LOSS OF PRECIOUS LIVES TILL NOW, AND IN FUTURE, IF A NUCLEAR WAR BREAKS OUT BETWEEN INDIA AND PAKISTAN, WORTH IT, FOR A VIRTUALLY ‘GONE’ PIECE OF LAND,
‘PAK OCCUPIED KASHMIR’, just for our Political Ambition and Ego?
[A Political Observer, Balaji Vishwanathan, has written in his article published under the website ‘Quora’, that India would have been better off, if it had opted and fought for Sind, which had a good percentage of Hindus, nearly equalling the Muslim population at the time of the partition in 1947, than for Kashmir- that too,for salvaging only a part of it, just to keep it under Article 370! But Pandit Nehru was more interested in Kashmir as it was a Strategic State. At the same time he did not want Sardar Patel, Home Minister, to annexe it by Military Power as in the case of Hyderabad, but intended to do it personally by political negotiation, as the Kashmir PM Sheikh Abdullah was his friend then. And he did it, with the appendage of Article 370 !
Yet, somehow, the Sindhis are better off today than the Kashmiri Pandits.
Actually, it was Sheikh Abdullah, who, being appointed PM himself, and Founder of the National Conference party of the Muslim majority state,Failed the Kashmiri Hindus, more than any Indian leader, by his Selfish and Faulty Communal policy of making the Raja delay in seeking protection from India, (although the British had given the State timely choice to either remain independent or to enter into an alliance with India.
It is learned that the assurance of Plebiscite after normalisation of Law and Order in the state, which was disturbed by the Pakistani tribals’ invasion, was offered to the Kashmiris by Pt.Nehru, the First Prime minister of India, based on the remark of the Governor General Lord Mountbatten on the Treaty of Accession, and the ‘Recommendation oF the UN Security Council. The addition of Article 370 in the Constitution of India was done to enable Raja Hari Singh and His Prime Minister to retain the King’s Monarchy and on that basis, the Autonomy of the State of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh, as well as to maintain the ‘Status Quo’ to preserve the scope for Plebiscite at an opportune time in the future as recommended by Lord Mountbatten, the last British Viceroy and Governor General in India. That’s that!
(B)WAS THE ACCESSION OF KASHMIR TO INDIA UNCONDITIONAL AND FINAL?
However, Nehru only left the state in a ‘Limbo’ or undecided state during his 17 years tenure as PM and the successive Congress Prime Ministers also did not do anything to resolve the issue till last year, 2014.
Instead Nehru jailed Sheikh Abdullah, the Prime Minister of Kashmir, subsequently in August 1953 (after the dissolution of the Princely State of Jammu and Kashmir in July 1952 and bringing it under the Indian Union Govt) on the charge of trying to influence the Kashmiri Muslims in favour of advocating a ‘separate Kashmir’, without waiting for the ‘plebiscite’!
The Indian Govts subsequent to Nehru, say that the Treaty of Accession was unconditional and ‘final’,that is, of ‘permanent validity’, as stated in the letter of the Treaty, signed by Raja Hari Singh and the Governor General on behalf of the Govt. of India, and that the question of ‘plebiscite’ and the Article 370 is only a ‘Temporary and Transient Provision’ in the Constitution of India till the situation in the State becomes normal.
But the Kashmiri separatists and Pakistanis say that Pt. Nehru, the first PM of India, DID make the commitment of Plebiscite on normalisation of the situation in the state, through a personal letter addressed to the PM of Kashmir, and hence it is binding on India even now to it honour it. This is the basis or point of all the disputes thereafter( though it is learned that the issue of plebiscite has been formally buried by the Indian Govt as long back as in 1954. )
However, the Pakistani people and their Government should answer, how they themselves came in possession of that part of Kashmir, Ladakh and Jammu, which they call Pak Controlled/Occupied’Kashmir?
Did they try to know the wishes of, or obtain the consent of the people of those regions captured, that they wanted to become the subjects of Pakistan? Did they take that region through Plebiscite, for them to demand it from the Indian Govt?
No ! They just INVADED the realm of the Kingdom of Kashmir and grabbed as much as they could, of the valley, like nobody’s business!
Really speaking, the GOVERNOR GENERAL who had put the remark instructing plebiscite in Kashmir and the UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL WHICH HAD BEEN REQUESTED BY PT NEHRU TO INTERVENE IN THE MATTER AS A WORLD POWER, COULD and SHOULD have COMPELLED,
RATHER THAN ORDERING PAKISTAN to return the seized parts of the Kashmir valley and the other parts of the state to the Maharajah of Kashmir and India in 1948 AND RESTORE THE STATUS OF THE KASHMIR STATE TO WHAT IT WAS AT THE TIME OF INDEPENDENCE, pending the plebiscite, before their departure, for the rehabilitation and protection of the rights of the exiled Kashmiri Pandits of POK. However, they did not do so, but settled the issue temporarily and cursorily by just ordering a ‘Ceasefire’ at the ‘Line of Control ‘,without a definite resolution, for reasons best known to them.
(C) WHY DID RAJA HARI SINGH AND SHEIKH ABDULLAH THEMSELVES NOT URGE THE GOVERNOR GENERAL MORE EMPHATICALLY FOR RECOVERY OF POK?
It may very well be that Raja Hari Singh, and his son, then Yuvraj- Regent of the Constituent Assembly of Kashmir, Dr.Karan Singh, were under compulsion of the circumstances or of the wishes of their subjects due to which they could not but go along with the Governor General and Pandit Nehru on the point of Plebiscite.
Yet, It is not understood why Raja Hari Singh and Sheikh Abdullah did not urge the Governor General of India strongly enough to usher in the British Army to help the Indian Army and Himself, to retrieve POK at that time itself, alongwith the rest of the valley of Kashmir, as the whole of Kashmir was under the Maharajah of Kashmir, until the raids of the Pakistanis, because of which, extending the attack by the Indian Army with the help of the British Army on POK to get it back would have been well within the rights of the Monarch and of the Indian government and the Governor General then, than of Indian Govt. now.
It is argued, though, that the Pathans of Pakistan had already captured
the territory of POK and strengthened their hold on it to the point that
the situation had become ‘uncontrollable’ by the time the Raja realised
his army’s inability to cope with it and approached the Indian Government.
However, it needs to be noted that even after the first ‘Flight of the Pigeons’, that is, the Kashmiri Pandits, from Pak Occupied Kashmir to Srinagar in Indian Administered Kashmir in 1947-48, they were able to stay in the Indian side of the Kashmir valley relatively peacefully thereafter for 42 years, upto mid1989, as the local Muslims did not have any grudge against the Kashmiri Pandits.
But the beginning of the Afghani Jihad in 1989, with rise of religious fundamentalism among the Pakistani and Kashmiri Muslims, led to selective targeting of the Kashmiri Hindus from mid-1989, and induced their biggest mass exodus from Indian Administered Kashmir too, to Jammu and other states in India from 17th January 1990, which the National Front Govt.
of India under Prime Minister VPSingh, which had just assumed charge
at the Centre failed to control.
The DEMOLITION of the BABRI MASJID FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF RAM MANDIR IN ITS PLACE on 6th December 1992, by the ‘Karsevaks’ in AYODHYA ‘ADDED FUEL TO THE FIRE’ OF the FEELING OF BETRAYAL AND HATRED IN the minds of the MUSLIMS of the region against the Hindus, fanned by the fanatic Afghani Muslim entrants in the region. This Fire of Anti-India and Anti- Hindu Hatred is still flaring and spreading in the Kashmir valley till to date!
Therefore, the reasons for the deadlock over Kashmir can be briefly summed up as follows:-
(1) Delay by the Maharajah of Kashmir in approaching India for help and signing the Treaty of Accession to India when the Pakistanis invaded His territory, till they had already occupied a part of it;
(2) The demand by Him and His Prime Minister Sheikh Abdullah for making the state Autonomous and separate vide the inclusion of the Article 370 in the Constitution of India, and the addition of the remark by The last British Governor General instructing to conduct plebiscite to know the wishes of the people as to which country they preferred to be under-India or Pakistan, agreed to by Pandit Nehru, which has led to its becoming permanently labelled as a ‘Disputed Territory’!
(3) Pandit Nehru ‘s involvement of the United Nations Security Council for resolution of the Indo-Pak conflict, which has made himself and subsequent governments hand-tied in resolving the issue without intervention of UN!
(D) SHOULD INDIA CONTINUE ITS FIGHT FOR RECOVERY Of POK?
Therefore, the GOVERNMENT of INDIA – instead of pursuing the elusive ambition of gaining possession of Pak Occupied Kashmir andGilgit/Baltistan, the ‘Birds In The Bush’, against the will of the region’s own people, who are more inclined to be with Pakistan – SHOULD BE more PRACTICAL , and REAPPROACH THE UN TO PLACE the more practical and vital PROPOSAL AND CONDITION BEFORE THE UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL
(WHOM PANDIT NEHRU HAS ALREADY INVOLVED IN THE MATTER) THAT INDIA ‘MIGHT CONSIDER’ THE FIRST OF THE SEVEN SOLUTIONS SUGGESTED BY BBC NEWS(UK) recently, VIDE THE ARTICLE ‘FUTURE OF KASHMIR AND GILGIT-BALTISTAN, viz. SCENARIO NO. 1- ‘STATUS QUO’, that is, FORFEITING ITS CLAIM OVER POK AND GILGIT-BALTISTAN, ‘PROVIDED THAT’ PAKISTAN TOO PROMISES TO GIVE UP INTERFERING IN THE MATTERS OF IAK (Indian Administered Kashmir), the “Bird In India’s Hand”, AND STOP SUPPORTING /ENCOURAGING the SEPARATISTS and TERRORISTS in INDIAN ADMINISTERED part of the KASHMIR valley TO DEMAND PLEBISCITE AND SEPARATION,
in order that the Kashmiri Pandits can return and resettle in their homeland safely and peacefully, as done recently by compromise and agreement with Bangladesh on 31st July 2015.
And then, if circumstances are normal, consideration can be given to giving the valley more Autonomy, and removal of the Army from that area! However, the PANUN Organisation of the Kashmiri Hindus are of the opinion that there is no option now but division of the Indian Administered Kashmir Valley to split the ‘PANUN KASHMIR’, if granted, from the remaining part of the valley, for ensuring their Safety!
Pandit Nehru might have been right in bringing the UN in the internal issue at the beginning, as the conflict between India and Pakistan over the possession of Kashmir had assumed the proportion of a War, but not
in respect to his attitude of keeping the matter undecided and lingering indefinitely thereafter, leading to rising impatience and violence among
the people in the state, which is becoming worse since Mid-1989, thanks to the inefficiency of both Rajiv Gandhi and Vishwanath Pratap Singh to curb the uprising ,and has totally disrupted the lives of the Kashmiri Pandits, as also of the other communities there to a greater or lesser extent. So some early thinking
and action is needed to resolve this issue.
I discussed this matter on Twitter with a retired Army Officer, and he too agreed that this is how the ‘deadlock’ can and should be broken, and the problem can be solved by arriving at a compromise with the Pakistanis and Kashmiri Muslims too, but neither nation is willing for such a compromise, and thus, the problem of Kashmir has become an ‘Ego’ issue !
After all, suppose Raja Hari Singh had decided to remain totally independent of India, as he indeed did at first, as per the choice given toHim after Independence by last British GovernorGeneral of India,LordMountbatten and Not have needed to Accede Kashmir to India in return for its military help, by stalling and driving out the invaders on His own, What would or Could India have done? Would India have resorted to the aggressive and unscrupulous tactics of forcible conquest of the territory of Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh, like Pakistan and China? At the most, India would have granted asylum in one of our states, and subsequently, maybe its citizenship to the Kashmiri Hindus driven out from there to India, which it can do even now.
SO, BUT FOR the incapacity of the Maharajah and Sheikh Abdullah, Prime Minister of Kashmir, to cope with the onslaught on the state by the Pakistani Pathan tribals (said to have been backed by the Pakistani Army, though Pakistan denies its involvement in the attack) with their own Kashmiri Army, (of which many Armymen were Muslims who were pro-Pakistan), AND the timely step taken by the shrewd politician Pandit Nehru of seizing the opportunity to make Raja Hari Singh sign the ‘Instrument Of Accession'(IOA) with India on 26 Oct. 1947 in desperation for Military Protection, India would NOT have got the custody of even that part, viz.Indian Administered Kashmir, which we are having with us today!
FOR WHEN RAJA HARI SINGH REQUESTED PM NEHRU TO EXTEND MILITARY HELP TO RESCUE KASHMIR BEFORE 26th October 1947, NEHRU DECLINED TO DO SO UNLESS THE MAHARAJAH AGREED TO SIGN THE TREATY OF ACCESSION WITH INDIA. AT FIRST, RAJA HARI SINGH HESITATED, BUT AFTER THE PAKISTANIS HAD ALREADY GRABBED MUCH OF HIS TERRITORY (WITHOUT WAITING FOR PAPER FORMALITIES LIKE NEHRU), the Maharajah and Sheikh Abdullah became panicky and had no alternative but to agree to sign the Instrument of Accession with India. Thereafter, the Indian Army acted swiftly and moved into Srinagar the very next day, 27th Oct.1947, and salvaged Srinagar and the part of the state that we have with us today. HOWEVER, in the areas which have remained in the custody of Pakistan, it is said that the part could not be retrieved because the situation had become uncontrollable then, DUE TO the Maharajah’s DELAY IN TAKING DECISION
to accede his Kingdom to India.
So Pandit Nehru deserves the credit for India getting possession of the major part of the Jammu and Kashmir State since October 1947 !
His policy of appeasement of Muslims is due to the support that he got
from Sheikh Abdullah in getting Raja HARI Singh to accede the Adminis-
tration and Military Power in respect of the State of Jammu-Kashmir and Ladakh to the Government of India.
Conversely, even if the King had acceded the Whole of his kingdom including that part taken by Pakistan(POK),to India, before Pakistan seized it, how would the situation have been different Today? The frustrating ‘Impediment’ of Article 370 and Plebiscite would still have been there. Also, with
the upsurge of the Islamic Afghani Jihad since 1989, mentioned above,
the Muslim Separatists of Kashmir would certainly have started their fight for ‘Azad Kashmir’ under the instigation by Pakistan, and persecuted the Kashmiri Pandits to make them flee from there. The only difference would have been that the exodus of the latter from POK would have occurred alongwith the mass exodus from the rest of Kashmir valley with effect from January 1990, instead of 1947-48. That’s all !
Even if India is successful in getting back POK now, it will not benefit our nation at all thereby. Instead, we will have one more Law and Order problem on our hands, as a result of acquiring possession by force of a land of which the people themselves are against being a part of India, forget about the prospects of rehabilitating the Kashmiri Pandits there!
(E) SUGGESTED SOLUTION FOR THE DEADLOCK:
(a) Perhaps, it may help the mission of restoring peaceful administration of the State of Jammu and Kashmir and prevention of clashes between the three culturally diverse communities therein, to split or TRIFURCATE the State of Jammu,Kashmir and Ladakh into Three provinces under India’s sovereignty, in such a way as not to disturb the local people’s sense of security.Dr.BRAmbedkar and Dr.Karan Singh too had suggested this as solution to the issue.
The idea of trifurcation of the state has already occurred to some of our politicians like LKAdvani and some others, who suggest that the state should be SPLIT along Religious or Communal lines, converting (1) Jammu with its Hindu majority into a full fledged state of India, (2) Ladakh with Buddhist majority into a Union Territory of India, and (3) keeping the Kashmir Valley with Muslim majority separate under the Article 370, With the exiled Pandits resettled there. BUT it is FEARED by many people that such division on religious basis may spark off ANOTHER spate of MASSACRE in all the provinces. HENCE the HESITATION in taking that step.
Also, as Nehru and his Ministers said then, “Jammu is not ‘running away’ from us, so the Main goal of our Government is to keep the Kashmir valley”. (as Jammu and Ladakh were living in peaceful secular co-existence with one another then). But now the situation in the state is not as peaceful as before and is making the people of J+K stay as citizens of one state with the rebellious, aggressive Muslims of the state,which is gradually upsetting their peace too!
Another argument of Pandit Nehru and of Farooq Abdullah, s/o Sheikh Abdullah and subsequent Chief Minister of Kashmir, was that Kashmir has been having its own Unique Secular Culture, ‘Kashmiriyat’ from the beginning, whereby its people, though comprising around five different communities, have been staying equanimously in mutually tolerant spirit with one another and a Special style of the region.
Right, but has that feeling of ‘Kashmiriyat’ or ‘Kashmiri Brotherhood’ irrespective of race or religion remained today as it was earlier? Regrettably , It hasn’t ! It has disappeared somewhere down the passage of time, and given place to Gross Hostility and Polarisation between the Hindus and Muslims, thanks to the influence of the religious fanatics in both Pakistan and India, to a greater or lesser extent, which is evident from the forced mass exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from the Valley in January 1990!
It is said by some people that the REAL REASON FOR KEEPING JAMMU and LADAKH, which have non-Muslim majority, with Kashmir, AS PARTS OF ONE STATE, is to MINIMISE OR DILUTE, AND COUNTERBALANCE THE LARGE MAJORITY of MUSLIMS in the Kashmir Valley .
IF JAMMU and LADAKH GET DETACHED from the Kashmir state by absorption in India, there would be LITTLE ground or JUSTIFICATION TO RETAIN the KASHMIR Valley, with its overwhelming majority, in India, which the Indian Government is bent on keeping. THE JUSTIFICATION FOR RETAINING THE KASHMIR VALLEY UNDER INDIA SHOULD THEREFORE BE THOUGHT ABOUT, WITH THE ‘PRESENT’ CONDITIONS AND ATTITUDE OF THE PEOPLE IN VIEW, Not as it was Before Independence.
And the FIRST JUSTIFICATION that comes to my mind is that the RIGHTS and FREEDOM AND SAFETY OF the KASHMIRI PANDITS STILL living IN the VALLEY will be further jeopardised, and there will be More impediments placed in the way of Kashmiri AND OTHER HINDUS FOR undertaking PILGRIMAGES to Religious Places like AMARNATH Shrine within Kashmir,as being experienced Already, IF THIS UNDECIDED STATE CONTINUES INDEFINITELY!
That was the Reason why Pandit Nehru did not hesitate to place even
Sheikh Abdullah, his longstanding friend and Prime Minister of Kashmir (until the dissolution of the Princely State in July 1952) under ‘Preventive Detention ‘ in August 1953, when the latter started making movements to secure ‘Separate Kashmir’! Somewhere around that time, Raja Hari Singh and his Scion Dr. Karan Singh too had begun to strive in favour of Trifurcation of the State and making Jammu and Ladakh independent of Kashmir. His efforts too were repressed at once for the same purpose, to keep the Kashmir Valley with India!
(b) The Opponents of the Trifurcation propose that the people of the state should be pacified by bestowing More Autonomy on the whole State, only short of Independence or Merging with Pakistan. Sadly, now the situation is such that most of the Muslims of the Kashmir Valley are ‘All Out’ for an ‘Azaad’ Muslim State, and are not in the mood to compromise with the other people of the state or even with the Government of India on any point. Under these conditions, it is doubtful if all the sections of the Jammu and Kashmir state will be able to, or ‘allowed to’ enjoy the benefits of the Greater Autonomy to the state!
And yet, the Indian Government is adamant on its stand to make these bitterly fighting unruly elements stay ‘In One Stable’ under itself by the use of Military Power!
(c)Under such circumstances, the WISE COURSE OF ACTION would be
to allow Jammu and Ladakh become a Joint State (or make Jammu a State and Ladakh a Union Territory) under India, and keep the Kashmir Valley as a separate part of India under Article 370 with More Autonomy (keeping Only those Parts which are of Tourist and Pilgrimage Value to Indians, in the region INCLUDING Srinagar, Anantnag and The Most Important Amarnath Shrine Board, Under the strict Surveillance of the State Police or Army for the Protection of the Kashmiri Pandits, without driving out the local Muslims, Not the Whole Valley).
(d) The Govt of India, on its part, has thought of carving out a Separate and Special Region (PANUN Kashmir) within Kashmir Valley for the rehabilitation of the Pandits where they can be guarded more easily by the state police.
That is what the Kashmiri Pandits also desire. This is a good idea, and at least the areas containing the holy pilgrimage places of Hindus and their traditional routes eg, the pathway to the Amarnath shrine, should be spared by the Kashmiri Muslims to make a SEPARATE ENCLAVE FOR THE PANDITS.
BUT the rigid, fanatic and uncooperative Kashmiri MUSLIMS OPPOSE the idea ON the HOLLOW GROUNDS that the sequestration of the Pandits as
a colony apart from the others will create more hostility and alienation between the Hindus and Muslims, instead of bringing them closer together, and say that the Kashmiri Pandits are welcome to return to the valley, and should come back. However, due to the past experiences which compelled the Pandits to leave the valley, they feel insecure and diffident to return to the valley, till the atmosphere there becomes peaceful.
(e) So MY OPINION is that it may work better to TRIFURCATE THE STATE, Not on religious lines, but ON the basis of the PROVINCE WISE WILLINGNESS of the people of Jammu and Ladakh, to let their province or zone become a State/Union Territory of India, as ascertained by a Government conducted Opinion Poll, instead of Plebiscite, endorsed by a Joint ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ signed and submitted to the Central government through proper. Channel by the citizens of the two provinces, into:-
(1) the Indian side of the Valley of KASHMIR with its Muslim majority separate (as it was a separate kingdom earlier but annexed to Jammu later), keeping the Article 370 and autonomy intact as at present, BUT ON CONDITION that the remaining 2700/3400 Pandits staying there still should not be disturbed, and that there should Not be any Opposition to the Return of the Pandits, viz. the original citizens of the state, from the other states where they are living now as refugees . I do not think the Article 370 should be scrapped in the valley. For I am not at all sure that it will be possible for Indians from the other states to come and settle there in any case, even if the Article and the Autonomy of the region and people is taken back, or the Army/Police is deputed there for all time in the present circumstances; instead,there will be more revolt from people of the Valley.
(2)The Province of LADAKH with Buddhist majority, and slightly less
Shia Muslim population, should also be retained separate for the sake of maintaining its cultural identity, but AS A UNION TERRITORY UNDER INDIA separate from the Kashmir valley, as the people of the Leh District are said to be asking for, to protect the Buddhists from becoming next victims of Islamic extremism and domination by Kashmiri Muslims, like the Pandits, AND with the CONDITION TO ALLOW partial relaxation of the Article 370 for the SETTLEMENT there OF the TIBETANS exiled from Tibet, and living as refugees since long in Dharamshala of Himachal Pradesh and elsewhere in India, in order to relieve the Tibetans, or those among them who are willing to live in Ladakh, from their Refugee status (that is, if the Tibetans themselves are receptive to the idea) as Ladakh is the largest among the three Provinces in the state, (and also to maintain their Majority status there.)
Both the above provinces should be allowed to select their leaders to represent them in the State Assembly, so that they would not need to resort to public protests and demonstrations or strikes to make their voices heard.
[(f) IN KASHMIR , by DISCUSSION WITH the SEPARATISTS, some compromise should be drawn with a view to withdraw the Army from those regions.
An EFFORT SHOULD BE MADE TO UNDERSTAND-
(i)WHAT exactly THEY WANT over and above the Autonomy enjoyed by them by virtue of Article 370 , that they would get by separation from India, which they don’t have now’, and
(ii) whether they would give up their demand for separation if some of their justifiable demands are met? That is, Other Than Expulsion of the Kashmiri Pandits from the Valley !
WHAT THEY WANT, I think, is Absolute Freedom and Power for
– following and Imposing their religion, that is, the Shariah Law;
– right/Liberty for self determination of their leaders and representatives,
– and, ABOVE ALL, FREEDOM FROM the Indian ARMY!
It is understandable, but for that, the Separatists too should understand
and commit, not to bring terrorist groups like ISI or ISIS into the Valley
that would jeopardise the Safety of India, and the security or rights of
the Kashmiri Pandits.)
After all, if we can discuss the Kashmir matter with the Pakistan Government in the absence of the Separatists who are the Natives of the Kashmir Valley, there is no apparent reason for not having a frank talk with the Separatists who are our own Subjects, With, or Directly Without the mediation or presence of Pakistan ! It should also be surveyed whether all the Muslims in the KashmirValley want separation from India, or only a percentage of them.]
(3) The Third, JAMMU Province with its Hindu majority, Should be made
a regular STATE under India by total abolition of Article 370 in that Province.
[3(b)] ALTERNATIVELY, THE REGIONS OF JAMMU AND LADAKH CAN BE CONVERTED INTO ONE STATE/UNION TERRITORY UNDER INDIA WITH TWO OR THREE PROVINCES LIKE GOA, DIU-DAMAN AND DADRA-NAGAR HAVELI-SILVASSA, AS WAS DONE AFTER THE END OF THE PORTUGUESE RULE, WITH GOA BEING GIVEN THE STATUS OF AN INDIAN STATE LATER.
(F) REHABILITATION OF THE KASHMIRI PANDITS:
(a)TRIFURCATION of the state of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh as outlined above, will serve to make it easier for the Pandits to return and settle in
a suitable area in Jammu, if formation of PANUN Kashmir is not possible
in the Valley itself, as for example, in Bhaderwah(भद्रवाह/भद्रकाशी) of the Doda Dist., and Sanasar near Patnitop of Udhampur Dist., both known as
‘Mini Kashmir’, if not in the Kashmir valley itself, and ABOLISH Article 370 (so as to IMPOSE the UNIFORM CIVIL CODE of India) in Jammu and Ladakh – with its non Muslim Buddhist and Hindu majority, of the Jammu and Kashmir State.
(The Local Muslims in the region should also have the right to stay in Jammu and be citizens of India,but if any of themselves have objection to the Art370 being scrapped and the province being converted into a Union Territory, they should be permitted to opt and settle in the Kashmir Valley.)
(b) Coming back to the issue and demand of settlement of the Kashmiri Pandits, a place similar to Kashmir can alternatively be marked out and developed to rehabilitate them, in another Himalayan place like Simla or Kasauli in Himachal Pradesh, or in Uttarakhand, around the Srinagar Region of Pauri Garhwal Dist. or Pithoragarh, the ‘Mini Kashmir’ of Uttarakhand, OR in Dharamshala with the Tibetan refugees. They can also be accommodated in a congenial region of Punjab or Haryana, that is around the banks of the Ghaggar river, which is said to be a tributary of the legendary River Saraswati, from where the Saraswat Brahmins or Pandits are said to have migrated, during a period of famine to the Kashmir Valley, where they were allowed to settle by the Naga Kings who ruled over the valley at that time, long before the advent of the Afghan Pashtun Durrani Muslims, viz.
(c) According to some thinkers, and the Kashmiri Pandits themselves, all the Pandits should be rehabilitated in the Kashmir valley Only, where they rightfully belong, but quite frankly, I don’t think that the gentle, peaceloving Pandits will be able to live safely in the Valley now, seeing the growing hostility, pugnaciousness and uncompromising attitude of the present Muslim fundamentalist and separatist elements therein on the issue of separation from India; so it is not right to force those among them who are afraid, to go back there if they feel diffident and insecure to do so, until their demand for Panun Kashmir is met, alongwith secure conditions for their rehabilitation.
AS FOR many of the displaced KASHMIRI PANDITS THEMSELVES, THEY HAVE ASKED FOR A SEPARATE ‘PANUN KASHMIR’ to the North and East of River Jhelum WITHIN THE KASHMIR VALLEY ITSELF, containing the major part of the four districts of Baramulla,Srinagar,Anantnag and Awantipora of Pulwama district), BUT AS A UNION TERRITORY under India.
However, the Second Alternative mentioned above, to absorb them as full fledged citizens of India by carving out a region for them in Pithoragarh or the Srinagar area in the Pauri Garhwal district, is the better and safer one, as with the rise of militancy in the Kashmir valley, it is not certain how long the Kashmiri Pandits will be able to stay there safely on long term basis, even with the appointment of the Army there for their protection, though the Indian Government Should try to make the State of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh free from the imposition of Article 370 at the earliest, and make the Kashmiri Pandits a regular part of India.
Only yesterday, on the 31st of July 2015, some Bangladeshis have been made full fledged citizens of India, along with their land, by a mutual agreement between the Prime Ministers of both countries, and vice versa.Why can’t the same be done in the case of the Kashmiri Pandits and the Jammu plus Ladakh region, which are supposed to be under the Government of India only?
(Regarding the Kashmiri MUSLIMS of the VALLEY proper, in case of the possibility of such Division of the State as suggested above, they can be given the option of either agreeing to the revocation of Art.370 and their autonomy, or forfeit their claim to the rights of Minorities available to the Muslims in the rest of India including Jammu-Ladakh, as the Article 370 keeps them in Majority in the Valley!)
The Trifurction of the state this way, with the rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits in the State of Jammu or Uttarakhand, will confer a safe, STABLE and PERMANENT abode for the exiled Kashmiri Pandits (wary of returning and staying in the valley) where they can stay undisturbed by the turbulence in the Kashmir valley.
It might also reduce the growing discontent and apprehension among
the Muslims of the J+K state, and ameliorate the tension in the atmosphere
of the region, as it may be possible to remove the Army from the State with the normalisation of the atmosphere !
(I think the separatists are more interested and confident of getting possession of, or maintaining autonomy and security of Article 370
in the Kashmir Valley proper, where Muslims are in majority than in Jammu or Ladakh, as they must be understanding that they have no legitimate or cultural right for autonomy there, since they are in the minority there. )
Moreover, KASHMIR was ‘SOLD’ and BESTOWED ONTO the State of JAMMU by the British, and LADAKH was conquered and ANNEXED to it by Raja Gulab Singh Himself, Not Vice Versa.
JAMMU and LADAKH were NOT HANDED OVER TO the KING of KASHMIR; Nor do Jammu or Ladakh have Muslim majority, but Hindu and Buddhist majority respectively. In fact, Jammu was a Sikh Kingdom first, passed on by Ranjit Singh to the Dogra(Hindu)King later, and Ladakh was a Buddhist Kingdom.
(d) Again, IF as per the injunction of the UN Security Council in 1948, PLEBISCITE HAS TO BE CARRIED OUT IN THE STATE eventually, IT HAS TO BE ONLY AMONG the ORIGINAL NATIVES OF THE LAND, FOR WHICH the Pakistani invaders HAVE TO LEAVE the place AND PEACE HAS TO BE RESTORED IN THE VALLEY AND STATE.
IF and WHEN these optimal conditions are restored, the Indian Govt can insist that IT SHOULD BE CONDUCTED PROVINCEWISE, I.e. SEPARATELY IN EACH OF THE PROVINCES OF THE STATE, INCLUDING THE PARTS WHICH ARE NOW IN POK, VIZ. in the KASHMIR VALLEY PROPER AND ‘AZAD KASHMIR’ as per SOLUTION/SCENARIO NO.5 suggested by BBC NEWS(UK), besides JAMMU, LADAKH, and GILGIT-BALTISTAN, AND SHOULD NOT BE DONE ON AN OVERALL STATEWISE BASIS, so that at least the Jammu/Ladakh people will not be affected by the outcome of the plebiscite, and the Kashmiri Pandits can be absorbed among them.
(e) EVEN IF THE CONDITIONS REQUIRED FOR THE PLEBISCITE ARE NOT BEING FULFILLED, AS AT PRESENT, THEN IN THE INTEREST OF PEACE, A SOLUTION CAN BE ARRIVED AT BY ‘NEGOTIATION’ BY INDIAN GOVT WITH THE SEPARATISTS, FOR LETTING THEM HAVE A NEAR AUTONOMOUS REGION IN THE VALLEY, OR SEPARATE FROM INDIA TO EITHER,
(1) FORM ‘AN INDEPENDENT KASHMIR VALLEY’ as per the ScenarioNo 6, of 8 Districts, including the 2 districts in the NORTH of the valley, of (i)Baramulla(excluding Baramulla and Sopore tehsils and Wular lake, and (ii)Kupwara, (I.e. EXCEPTING THE LAND OF THE KASHMIR VALLEY,NORTH AND EAST OF RIVER JHELUM NEEDED TO FORM A UNION TERRITORY OF INDIA, namely, ‘PANUN KASHMIR’ for the KASHMIRI HINDUS, I.e.PANDITS OF KASHMIRI NATIVITY, as detailed below) AND the 4 SOUTHERN districts of Badgam, Kulgam,Shopiyan and Pulwama(except Awantipura, which is of religious importance for the Pandits), as well as the Major part of Bandipore and Ganderbal
(2) OR IF THE SEPARATISTS WISH, THEY CAN MERGE THE MAJOR PORTION OF THE KASHMIR VALLEY IN INDIA ALLOTTED TO THEM, viz.the 2 LARGE NORTHERN DISTRICTS of KUPWARA and the major part of BARAMULLA,PLUS – THE 4 SOUTHERN DISTRICTS OF SHOPIYAN, KULGAM,BADGAM DISTRICT OF SOUTH KASHMIR,AND THE PULWAMA DISTRICT, (EXCEPT AWANTIPORA CITY) ,and if the Indian Government agrees, merge the districts under India mentioned above, AND,THE ADDITIONAL (10)DISTRICTS of Azad Jammu-Kashmir UNDER THE CONTROL OF POK, TO FORM A ‘SMALLER INDEPENDENT/AZAD KASHMIR’, HAVING totally 18/19 districts, INCLUDING the 10 districts of ‘AZAD JAMMU-KASHMIR(but not the Northern areas of Gilgit-Baltistan) as a slight modification of the Scenario No.5 suggested by BBC News, UK, vide their Article ‘The Future of Kashmir?'(sparing the remaining districts, viz. Ganderbal, Srinagar, Anantnag, and 2of the 16 tehsils of Baramulla, as also Awantipora city of Pulwama, in the Kashmir valley for ‘Panun Kashmir’, and the Hindu and Buddhist majority provinces of Jammu and Ladakh.
It is said in the commentary on the Scenario No.5 that neither India nor Pakistan are likely to agree to part with that much part of the territory under them for the sake of ‘A Smaller Independent Kashmir’. It is said that Pakistan relies for its Water Supply on the Mangala Water Reservoir in the Mirpur District of AZAD Jammu Kashmir, so it would not agree to give up that region for the ‘Smaller Independent Kashmir’.India’s reluctance to forfeit either the whole or even part of Jammu and Kashmir valley under it is understandable. However, the Pakistan Government under whose control the ‘AZAD Kashmir’ is, should not mind sparing that part of the POK for the Kashmiri Separatists , towards whom they otherwise show so much sympathy! OR, Pakistan can make maintenance of their right to share and use the water of the reservoir a precondition for granting true Azadi to the socalled ‘Azad Jammu Kashmir’!
THEREFORE, ‘NEGOTIATION’, rather than Plebiscite, SHOULD BE DONE BY INDIAN GOVT. WITH THE KASHMIRI SEPARATISTS AND UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL, AND IF NECESSARY, WITH PAKISTAN, IN CASE OF the Separation of the Kashmir Valley BECOMING UNAVOIDABLE, IN THE INTEREST OF PUTTING AN END TO THE CONTINUING BLOODSHED AND UNREST IN THE JAMMU-KASHMIR STATE, TO TRY FOR EXCLUSION AND RETENTION WITH INDIA OF THE REGIONS IMPORTANT TO THE KASHMIRI PANDITS AND HINDUS, AS CLAIMED BY ‘PANUN KASHMIR’ ORGANISATION TO FORM AN A UNION TERRITORY UNDER INDIA, viz. the land to the North and East of River Jhelum of Indian Administered Kashmir, and the remaining part of the Kashmir valley can be spared for the Separatists. The 38000sq.kms Aksai Chin area of Ladakh and the Northern areas of GILGIT-BALTISTAN have already been seized by Pakistanis, their sympathisers, in 1947.
FOR THE REHABILITATION of KASHMIRI HINDUS AND RELIGIOUS/PILGRIMAGE REASONS, (1) THE SRINAGAR DIST.,HOUSING THE AIRPORT LEADING TO AMARNATH CAVE, (2)THE SOUTHERN DIST. OF ANANTNAG, WHICH COMPRISES THE AMARNATH SHRINE WITH THE PAHALGAM ROUTE;(3)BARAMULLA DIST. including Only the 2 tehsils of Baramulla and Sopore, Wular lake;and if possible, the border villages of Lagama, Dyari and Bandi near Uri, (besides THE AWANTIPORA CITY OF THE SMALL SOUTHERN DISTRICT of PULWAMA)as well as (4)Southern part of the GANDERBAL Dist., which is an original tehsil of Srinagar converted into a separate district including Manasbal lake,Tulmul, Baltal and Sonamarg, of Ganderbal Dist.,i.e, a little over 2 of the 10 Districts of the entire Kashmir Valley, as desired by the’Panun Kashmir’ Organisation, and may be collectively named ‘PANUN KASHMIR’, IF THOUGHT FIT BY THE INDIAN GOVERNMENT.
[However, if the PANUN KASHMIR, Jammu and Ladakh become UNION TERRITORIES under the Indian Union, free of the Article 370, and UNDER THE Indian CONSTITUTION , as the Kashmiri Pandits, Jammu and Leh-Ladakh residents want, ALLOWANCE may perhaps have TO BE MADE not only for the exiled Kashmiri Pandits to return to their ‘demarcated part’ of the Valley, but ALSO OTHER NONMUSLIM KASHMIRI REFUGEES LIKE SIKHS. Likewise, for TIBETAN REFUGEES, WHO MAY WANT TO STAY IN THE UNION TERRITORIES OF JAMMU AND LADAKH respectively AS INDIAN CITIZENS. However, it would be better to lift the Article 370 only partially rather than scrapping it totally, in the Kashmir valley and Ladakh, for retaining their basic ethnic and cultural identity, like the ‘Kashmiriyat’ of the Kashmir Valley natives and of Ladakh.]
Likewise, those Muslims residing in the area earmarked for ‘Panun Kashmir’ from the beginning as its domiciles,and do not wish to separate from India, might have to be allowed to stay on there, on condition that they will not disturb the life or religious observances of the existing and rehabilitated Hindus, nor protest against the scrapping of Article 370 in the Kashmir Valley, Jammu, and partially in Ladakh for ethnically related preferably Buddhist clans, especially Tibetans, if any of them wish to come and stay there. For just as it is a fact that some sections among the Muslims of Kashmir are anti Hindu and anti India and want to separate from India to form an ‘Independent Kashmir’, there ARE also probably many Muslims who have no antipathy towards Hindus, among the original Kashmiri Sufi Muslims, and have no desire to leave India to live with the fanatic Islamists. It would be unfair therefore to make them go out of their homeland just for being Mohammedans, even if the demand for Panun Kashmir is granted by the Government of India, which the Kashmiri Pandits should not mind.However, it goes without saying that the numbers of the stay-back Muslims would have reduced significantly to a Minority, after the ‘exodus’ of the separatists from the region carved out for Panun Kashmir, so that they will not be able to disturb the Pandits.
IT IS NECESSARY TO GIVE THE KASHMIRI PANDITS THEIR DUE LAND, DISTINCT FROM THE SEPARATISTS, EITHER IN THIS WAY OR BY CREATING SPECIAL TOWNSHIPS OR COLONIES FOR THE PANDITS IN THE DISTRICTS OR CITIES PREFERRED BY THEM, WITH POLICE/ARMY GUARDS. FOR, SEEING THE TENDENCY OF THE SEPARATISTS TO BRING THE PAKISTANIS AND TERRORIST ORGANISATIONS LIKE ISIS INTO THE VALLEY IN THEIR SUPPORT, IT IS EVIDENT THAT THE PLACES OF HINDU WORSHIP IN THE VALLEY WILL NOT REMAIN SAFE FOR PILGRIMAGE, LEAVE ALONE FOR RESETTLEMENT OF THE KASHMIRI PANDITS, IF THE WHOLE OF THE VALLEY UNDER INDIAN CONTROL IS SURRENDERED TO THE KASHMIRI MUSLIM SEPARATISTS! THE DIVISION OF THE INDIAN ADMINISTERED KASHMIR VALLEY INTO TWO SHARPLY DEMARCATED PARTS, VIZ. ‘ISLAMIC KASHMIR’ UNDER ARTICLE 370 AND ‘PANUN KASHMIR’ WILL ALSO ENABLE KASHMIRI PANDITS RESIDING IN THE MUSLIM DOMINATED REGIONS TO RETURN TO A RESERVED PART OF THEIR OWN HOMELAND!
THIS CAN BE CONSIDERED AS THE ‘JHELUM FORMULA’, as against the ‘Chenab Formula’ proposed by Pervez Musharraf, Ex-Prime Minister of Pakistan.(Of course, the Indian Government will not allow the plebiscite or SEPARATION of KASHMIR VALLEY to take place so easily or early, but such internal division can be considered in the interest of communal peace in the valley and State!
(G) SOLUTION TO THE REHABILITATION ISSUE OF THE EXILED TIBETANS:-
The removal of Art.370 in Ladakh, if possible,might also help the Indian Govt to resolve the matter of the Refugee status of the Tibetans in India too, by giving them the option of rehabilitation in Ladakh – which at one time was
a kingdom in Tibet and is geographically, as also ethnically, a part of it,
and hence termed ‘Mini Tibet’- as well as of accepting the Citizenship of India. However, the people in Ladakh may also want to retain Article 370
to maintain their autonomic status. But Perhaps, it may be possible to persuade them to accept and accommodate just the displaced Tibetans among them, with the Article 370 intact, in the name of helping their countrymen and for the sake of Humanity!
It is learnt that the people of Ladakh also desire to have an independent state, because of the presence of the Indian Army in the Province(though it is learnt that the people of the Leh district with their larger non Muslim population do not mind becoming a Union Territory under India); but many of the Buddhists and Hindus there do not realise that they are better off under India. For being the mild people that they are, it will not take long for the Pakistanis and Kashmiri separatists to shift the whole of Ladakh under Pakistan, or for the Muslims to outnumber and dominate them by their rising population, once they separate from India. Or else, the Chinese will capture their territory as they have done with Tibet !
Therefore it is in their interest that the refugee Tibetans, their own Racial brethren and original countrymen, may be rehabilitated within their state, for adding to the number of non-Muslims within the province, to safeguard their delicate overall majority there, by bringing it up to a significant number!
(AS To the part of Kashmir valley occupied by the Pakistanis(POK), let them make it ‘Azaad’ or ‘Abaad’, or do whatever they want with it. For now, it is a matter of – ‘Apne Hi Daant aur Apne Hi Honth’ (that is, their own internal matter) for them.)
(H) All that INDIA CAN do NOW is to ENSURE that at least a part of the’INDIA ADMINISTERED KASHMIR’ valley, alongwith JAMMU and LADAKH REMAINS WITH IT – BY PEACEFUL AND DIPLOMATIC BUT FIRM NEGOTIATION WITH PAKISTANl AND CHINA – as well as the whole of ‘ARUNACHAL PRADESH, which is also a disputed area claimed by China, as far as possible.
UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, WHATEVER MAY BE OUR DIFFERENCES WITH THE TWO NATIONS, AND THEIR CLAIMS ON WHICHEVER LAND, INDIA SHOULD TRY ITS BEST TO RETAIN MOST OF ‘INDIA ADMINISTERED KASHMIR, JAMMU and LADAKH’ – as it is a state of great Tourist Interest and Pilgrimage sentiment for Indians (e.g. Darshan’ of ‘Barfani Baba’ at Amarnath in the Anantnag area of Kashmir, as also our part of Jammu, for its Vaishnodevi Temple, and Ladakh for its Mountainous region for Mountaineering), as well as ARUNACHAL PRADESH.
Moreover, the Kashmir valley occupies a strategic position between Pakistan and the rest of India. So, if and once India relinquishes its hold on the Valley totally, and withdraws its Army from it, the Pakistani Army will step in immediately and persecute to drive out the remaining 1.6/2%Pandits (2700/3400) staying there still, besides making simple visits to Kashmir or living in Jammu-Ladakh difficult for Hindus, and coming dangerously close to the rest of the parts of India.
The Pakistanis have already misappropriated the Aksai Chin region of Ladakh alongwith POK and Gilgit-Baltistan in 1947 and handed over Aksai-Chin, Shaksgam as well as allowed the possession of the Trans-Karakoram Tract near the Siachen Glaciers to China in 1962-63, which therefore are also practically lost to India. So if the remaining part of Kashmir too gets separated from India through plebiscite forced upon India by the Kashmiri Separatists with the support of external agencies like Pakistan and China, as a result of the steps taken out of our insistence to regain the custody of Pak-Occupied-Kashmir as well as Gilgit Baltistan and Aksai Chin, viz. the ‘Birds In The Bush’, we may lose even ‘The Bird In The Hand’ of India,
namely, Indian Occupied and Administered Kashmir, Jammu, and Ladakh’!
(I) IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED:-
So some action, to the extent possible, should be started by the Indian Government from now itself, in the direction of early incorporation in its Union of at least the Non Muslim, viz. the Buddhist and Hindu majority part of the State, I. e. Ladakh and Jammu, naming it as the ‘State or Union Territory of Jammu and Ladakh, abolishing the Article 370 in those regions, if they agree to this De-autonomisation and absorption in the Indian Union. An effort should also be made to make the above mentioned three districts of the Kashmir valley, alongwith Awantipura city and Sonamarg, available for establishment of Panun Kashmir as required by the KashmiriPandits, and converted into a Union Territory of India.
The remaining part of the Kashmir Valley with Muslim majority may be allowed to remain under Article 370 for the time being, if it remains with India.
Once the border dispute with Pakistan and China is resolved, the entire Border of India can be declared as the International Border of India or its Line of Control, and Sealed formidably!
In short, MORE THAN Retrieving of POK, IT IS THE END OF TERRORISM IN THE VALLEY IN INDIAN ADMINISTERED KASHMIR and RESTORATION OF PEACE, AS WELL AS REHABILITATION OF THE KASHMIRI PANDITS, WHICH SHOULD BE THE INDIAN GOVERNMENT’S FIRST PRIORITY!
Unless the Indian Government takes appropriate decision and action in the direction of the End of Terrorism in the Kashmir Valley and of Uprising Unrest in the Jammu Province also in time, God Forbid, the Kashmir’s Separatists, instigated and backed by external Anti-India elements like Pakistanis, hand in hand with the already existing Terrorists like ISI, LeT, as well as the new entrant ISIS, and the Chinese, will jointly continue to encroach upon and disturb the Security and Peace of the rest of India Forever!
(OR ELSE, if Worst comes to Worst’, the tension among the people of the state will build up to the point of explosion, upon which, there will be a ‘Bloody Battle’ ensuing between the people of Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh, and also the border regions of India, who will Take the Law In Their Hands and force a resolution of the conflict by battling among themselves for the state’s territory with their respective external supporters, on the basis of ‘Might is Right’! The Gory Outcome of this is best left to the imagination of the readers)!
(The same care is required in guarding Arunachal Pradesh from China, as the greedy Chinese ‘Dragon’ is keeping its ‘eye’ on that Pradesh too, and trying to snatch a part of the State from India. It is learnt that China has offered to renounce its claim on the disputed Aksai Chin part of Ladakh,if India would let go its possession over the Northern part of Arunachal Pradesh. However, India is not inclined to consider that offer.)
Still, our leaders smugly declare, in spite of the daily terrorist attacks on
our borders and within the J+K State by the Kashmiri Separatists and the Terrorists, said to be motivated and backed by the Pakistani Army, that there is “Nothing to worry. They can’t do anything to take Kashmir away from us. We’ll finish them if they try to !”
It is understandable that the leaders of our nation fear that granting separation from India to one state like Kashmir will set off a decimating and dangerous precedent for secession by sedition in this country, especially in Telangana, the region of the kingdom of the erstwhile Nizam of Hyderabad, which has split recently from the Andhra State. However, it is felt that the issue of Kashmir is more serious and pressing, and hence needs our Government’s urgent attention for the sake of the lives of our young Jawans who are dying in large numbers over the Kashmir deadlock! Also, it will not be so easy for Telangana to force its separation on India because of its isolated location in the subcontinent.
Well, let us hope they prove right. For even if India may never be able to get back the possession of ‘disputed’ territories appropriated by Pak, and control over POK, it can at least raise the ‘Sword’ of protest against encroachment by China and terrorist organisations into that area, or Pak holding elections therein, by virtue of the ongoing dispute, which may not be possible once we withdraw our claim over those regions totally. After all, PEACE alongwith ‘LIVE AND LET LIVE’ Policy is the Ultimate and Eternal Principle of India, that is,’Mera Bharat Mahaan’!