While Pakistan was giving the finishing touches to the Kartarpur peace corridor for the Indian Sikh community, on August 5, 2019, India’s Modi-led government abrogated Articles35Aand 370of India’s constitution, ended Jammu and Kashmir’s special autonomous status,and divided the state into two union territories, named as Jammu and Kashmir and Laddakh, in clear violation of the UN Security Council resolutions.
At the same time, to suppress Kashmiris’ expected reaction, the Muslim majority Kashmir valley has been kept under curfew with all communications closed for the last 105 days. The Indian security forces have, reportedly, arrested about 13,000 young men, and are carrying out genocide of Kashmiris, who despite these restrictionsare protesting and asking fortheir right to self-determination.
Despite Pakistan’s fierce protests and its best possible diplomatic campaign, led by Prime Minister Imran Khan himself, to gain the support of the world powers, and in spite of theUN and world powers’ repeated advice to India to lift the curfew and resolve the Kashmir dispute by holding a dialogue with Pakistan, India continues with the curfew and communications blockade and genocide in the Kahmir valley.
Inspite of India’s unilateral hostile actions in the occupied Kashmir and its provocations of showing Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan as part of its new map, and giving belligerentstatements of attacking Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan completed theKartarpur Corridor on time. And, on November 9, 2019,Prime Minister Khan performed the opening ceremony of the corridor,and enabled the Sikh community of India and the world to attend the 550th birth anniversary of Sikhism founder Baba Guru Nanak on November 12, 2019. This peace initiative is based on religious perspective, and any Sikh from any part of the globe is welcome to visit Kartarpur.
Disregarding Pakistan’s Kartarpur corridor initiative, India’s policy of continuing with its enmity with Pakistan is persisting. In this context, by providing military assistance to the current Afghan government, India is trying to create a two-front war scenario for Pakistan.Recently, according to Afghanistan’s Tolo News, India has given two MI-24V Gunship helicopters to Afghanistan. Being against peace in Afghanistan, with the Taliban a part of any Afghan set up, India is also against the US-Taliban peace talks.
Moreover, India is playing power politics to end Pakistan’s international support on the Kashmir dispute. Feeling the pinch of Turkey and Malaysia to have stood by Pakistan on the issue of Kashmir during the UNGeneral Assembly session of 2019, it is now pressurising these two countries to change their principled stance on Kashmir. While India has met the Cyprian president (which implies an anti-Turkey stance) it is also threatening Malaysia to stop importing palm oil from it.In this regard, India should know that Pakistan’s bonds of friendship with Turkey and Malaysia are too strong for it to attempt any division.
India will never hold a dialogue with Pakistan on the Kashmir dispute until the time Kashmiris are in a position to start a civil disobedience movement to get their right to self-determination
India is also trying to mislead the world about the Kashmir situation by countering the facts being projected in social media by world’s Muslim youth. This is being done by airing a video named the ‘Kashmir Truth’on Doordarshan, depicting the so-called real situation in Kashmir, but thevideo is a false depiction of the reality of Kashmir. India cannot mislead the world as the real situation in Kashmiris also being projected by western media,like CNN, BBC, News 24, DW,The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Independent, human rights organisations and voices in the US Congress, EU and UN, which India cannot refute.
Also, Indian minorities, especially the Muslims of India and the Kashmiris,are now sceptical whether the Supreme Court of India can give impartial decisions to protect their religious rights. This perception is supported by the pro-Hindu decision of the Indian Supreme Court to construct a Hindu temple in place of the historic Babri Mosque, the very late hearing of the Kashmir lockdown case,and hearing of the case against the abrogation of Articles 35A and 370 being still pending.
In view of the above-discussed points, anti-Pakistan policies of India, despite Pakistan’s peace offers, including its efforts to resolve the Jammu and Kashmir dispute through a dialogue,it seems that after August 5, 2019 assault on Kashmiris, India will never hold a dialogue with Pakistan on the Kashmir disputeuntil the time Kashmiris are in a position to start a civil disobedience movement to get their right to self-determination.
To live with India as a neighbour with dignity and honour, to compel it to resolve the Kashmir dispute through a dialogue and to stop it from fiddling with the Indus Basin Water Treaty, it is therefore necessary that Pakistan focuses on becoming a strong economic power in the next ten years so that it can defeat India’s anti-Pakistan plansand policieswith strong and excellentpeace-making,diplomatic and militarystrategies.
The writer is a former research fellow of Islamabad Policy Research Institute (IPRI)