Indian leaders’ short sightedness puts SAARC at stake.
The common life remains paralyzed in the Indian Occupied Kashmir (IoK) due continued curfew continued in major towns and cities. Even the small villages situated in far flung areas have also badly affected by the unjust and unprovoked frequent operations and raids by occupying forces. In south Kashmir, curfew was imposed in Pulwama district, while it continued in Anantnag, Kulgam districts. Curfew and restrictions also remained in force in North Kashmir’s restive area’s including Sopore, Pattan, Baramulla, Bandipora and Kupwara. Indian authorities had sealed the entire Eidgah erecting nakas and mobile bunkers at different points on the Old City roads. Strict curfew remained in forces in Old Srinagar city while authorities once again barred people from offering mandatory Friday congregational prayers at Jamia Masjid Srinagar.
The recent public uprising in Kashmir, also known as the Burhan aftermath, refers to a series of violent protests in the Muslim-majority Kashmir Valley that started with the killing of Burhan Wani, a Kashmiri youth by Indian security forces on July 08, 2016. After his killing, anti-India protests started in all 10 districts of the Kashmir Valley. Curfew was imposed in all 10 districts of the valley on 15 July and mobile services were suspended by the government, leading to criticism from international human rights groups. Jammu and Kashmir Police and Indian paramilitary forces used pellet guns, tear gas shells, rubber bullets, as well as assault rifles resulting in the deaths of more than 200 civilians, with over 6,500 civilians injured, majority with eye injuries due to direct pellet fire at eyes and resulting in blindness.
This situation has been prevailing over last two months but the occupying forces and government instead of realizing the main causes for the public uprising gave free hand to brutal butchers to kill innocent people and inflicting the worst forms of tortures on Kashmiri youth. Moreover, Indian leadership instead of reciprocating Pakistan’s cooperation for a durable solution of Kashmir dispute has ridiculed Pakistani goodwill gestures as well as tended to threaten Pakistan of direful consequences. Narendra Modi, whom Google ranked the most stupid premier, has warned Pakistan to dismember and dismantle into pieces as India had done in the past in 1971, when East Pakistan was forcibly created on the map of the world under Indian connivance with international forces.
Pakistani Foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry wrote to his Indian counterpart for comprehensive dialogue on the Kashmir dispute. He invited Indian counterpart to visit Pakistan for talks on Jammu and Kashmir dispute that has been the main bone of contention between India and Pakistan. But Indian side demonstrated utmost non seriousness and opted to ridicule Pakistan’s honest intensions to save the region from tension.
After being disappointed due to the Indian callous and cool response, Pakistani Advisor on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz wrote a letter to the International President of Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors without Borders) highlighting the state of medical emergency in Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir that had developed as a result of atrocious Indian brutalities against unarmed and defenseless civilians.
In this situation, Pakistani Prime Minister called upon the international community to immediately help arrange medical treatment for the victims in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK), especially for treatment of eye injuries resulting from use of pellet guns by the Indian forces. The Prime Minister conveyed Pakistan’s unequivocal support in arranging best available medical facilities to these injured people, anywhere in the world. He called upon the international community to exercise its influence over India for ending bloodshed in the IOK and providing access for provision of treatment to the victims in the wake of ongoing humanitarian crisis.
He also wrote to the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon, and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Prince Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, urging efforts to end the persistent and egregious violation of the basic human rights of the Kashmiri people and also to implement UN Security Council Resolutions, which provide for self determination of the Kashmiri people through a fair and impartial plebiscite under the aspiration of the UN.
The Adviser on Foreign Affairs wrote to the Secretary General of Arab League highlighting horrific Indian brutalities in Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir. He underscored that India has unleashed a reign of terror against the innocent and defenseless civilians since the extrajudicial killing of a young Kashmiri leader Burhan Wani on 8 July, 2016.
In result, Indian Prime Minister delivered an anti Pakistan speech at Indian Independence Day. He used abusive and threatening language in violation of all the diplomatic norms and international values. Responding to Modi’s speech, Sartaj Aziz, said, that Mr. Modi was only trying to divert world attention from the grim tragedy that has been unfolding in the Indian Occupied Kashmir over the past five weeks. Thousands of unarmed youth are protesting every day for their right of self determination. More than 70 innocent Kashmiris have been killed and more than 6000 injured. There is constant curfew and complete media blackout for the past 37 days. These events have nothing to do with terrorism. It is an indigenous movement for self determination, a right promised to the Kashmiris by the UN Security Council. At this time, the contrast between the Indian Occupied Kashmir and the Azad Jammu and Kashmir could not be starker.
Then Pakistan requested the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to send a fact finding mission to Indian Occupied Kashmir to report on the gross violations of human rights since July 8, 2016. Since that letter was written, the situation has deteriorated further. In the past 40 days, more than 80 innocent young Kashmiris have been killed, 6000 wounded and 120 blinded as a result of brutal action by the Indian Security forces to suppress peaceful protests. There has been constant curfew during this period in IOK and a complete media blackout. In response to Pakistan’s request, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has offered to send fact finding missions to both Indian Occupied Kashmir and the Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJK).
Amid such conditions, the Special Assistant on Foreign Affairs, Syed Tariq Fatemi briefed the Ambassadors of the OIC member states, based in Islamabad over the grave human rights violations in the Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IoK). The Special Assistant conveyed Pakistan’s serious concern over the continued killings and blatant human rights violations in the IoK, resulting from the indiscriminate use of lethal force by the Indian occupation forces. The Adviser on Foreign Affairs, Sartaj Aziz, briefed the Ambassadors of the Permanent Members of the UN Security Council (China, France, Russia, UK and USA) and the European Union in Islamabad over the killings and serious human rights violations being committed by the Indian occupation forces in the Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IoK). The Adviser deplored the lethal use of force by the Indian occupation forces against the innocent Kashmiri people and conveyed serious concerns over the bloodshed in the IoK which has taken a toll of more than 80 innocent Kashmiris since July 08 2016 and inflicted injuries on more than 7000 people. He said that the oppressive measures by India cannot deter the valiant people of the Jammu and Kashmir from their just struggle for their right of self-determination.
India had spoiled the dream of trade union of Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) just for nothing, but lust of regional hegemony. In this context, Indian negative approach towards neighbouring countries spoiled two major conferences SAARC Interior Ministers Conference and SAARC Finance Ministers’ Meeting both held in Islamabad. Indian Home Minister spoke irrationally in the first conference while Indian Finance Minister remained absent from the later meeting. Both meetings had been held at a crucial time for the region but Indian leadership’s short sightedness deprived the region from positive outcomes of these regional gatherings.
On the basis of prevailing Indian state of mind and mindset, observers are doubtful about positive outcome of the SAARC Summit scheduled to be held in December this year. Just because of the Indian mindset future of SAARC has been placed at stake and dream for a peaceful and prosperous South Asia does not seem to come true.
Author is the President, Center Of Pakistan And International Relations (COPAIR) and Editor -in- Chief of ‘Mélange’. firstname.lastname@example.org