Syed Mujtaba Hussain
Kashmir is a zone of chaos, a highest militarised zone in the world. Kashmir is a bone of fight between the two Nuclear Countries. The independence of India and Pakistan gave the birth to conflicts, chaos, and hatred. The two independent dominions of Pakistan and India were born on 14th and 15th of August respectively. Princely states were a peculiar issue, they were technically free to accede to either dominion or to remain independent, the idea of independent according to Lord Mountbatten, the first and last British Governor General of free India, was merely a “theoretical option” he urged to merge either India or Pakistan. Except Junagarh, Hyderabad and Jammu and Kashmir all other have chosen their dominions. Junagarh and Hyderabad were annexed in the Indian Union subsequently. Jammu and Kashmir till October 1947 was independent. The idea to remain independent by Hari Singh put the future of the state at stake and till date the state is being sandwiched between the relations of two nuclear powers India and Pakistan and this lead to millions of innocent persons including unborn babies still in the womb of their mothers were mercilessly killed in the different massacres.
For over 70 years, unarmed Kashmiris, including men, women, school-going boys and girls and aged people have continued to witness mental, psychological as well as physical humiliation and torture. Every day, there are incidents of gashing of eyes, use of ever-new methods during unending curfews, torching of their villages along with crops and destruction of their business as well as economic life, which is in utter defiance of international Human Rights and Humanitarian laws.
The Kashmir conflict is a legacy of the past. The international community had given Pakistan and India many chances to resolve the outstanding issues. Right from partition apart from UN SC resolutions various agreements, mediations and talks have been articulated between the two nations. Tashkent Agreement, Shimla Agreement, Lahore Declaration, Agra Summit, Peace Process and Confidence Building Measures are the glaring examples. At the bilateral approach, the political leadership of both the countries have failed because prior to every sincere approach towards the resolution, Politically motivated opportunistic preconditions are placed which are not acceptable to one or the other stake holders to the dispute . Also, the Stake holders incorporate the political interests of their party with the choice of inclusion of stake holders to the dispute and at one time accept different elements as the stake holders but on other instance refuse to recognise them as a party to dispute which maligns the spirit of an Unconditional dialogue. In the last three years there have not been any productive and substantive talks between India and Pakistan.
In international politics, there are two basic strategic options:
“(a) Defensive posture (b) Offensive posture”.
In a conflict States display offensive and defensive behaviours. Both offensive and defensive behaviours can involve the use of force and aggression. In geopolitical scenario of South Asia, Pak-India animosity is the major subject which has decisive role. The geo-political and strategic importance of Jammu and Kashmir has put India and Pakistan on formidable wars, hostility, and low intensity conflicts. Both nations are nuclear powers and are rivals in non- military issues including economy and politics.
There is no reluctance to say that regional forum like SAARC (the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) is inactive due to various political reasons of members. The members to SAARC have made postponements of SAARC Summits on five occasions: 1991 (6th Summit in Colombo) 1999 (11th Summit in Kathmandu), 2003 (12th Summit in Islamabad), 2005 (13th Summit in Dhaka) and 2016 (19th Summit in Islamabad) and recently in 2018. All regional powers are aware of the fact that the blame game of two Nations spoils the geopolitical landscape of South Asia instead of making things better domestically. If India and Pakistan want to make South Asia a peaceful and prosperous region, they have to adopt ideology of non-violence.
Kashmir bleeds and for the past seven decades the people of Kashmir remain trapped in this status quo. The baggage of history weighs heavy on us and the change in this shift is possible only through sustained unconditional dialogue — dialogue as we all understand is currently the most civilised and humane way to resolve conflicts There remains an urgent need to address past and ongoing human rights violations and to deliver justice for all people in Kashmir who have been suffering several decades of conflict. Any resolution to the political situation in Kashmir should entail a commitment to ending the cycles of violence and unaccountability for past and current human rights violations and abuses committed by all parties and redress for victims. Such a resolution can only be brought about by meaningful dialogue that includes the people of Kashmir
India and Pakistan should resume the dialogue process and engage all the stake holders including the people of Jammu and Kashmir in a sustained unconditional dialogue aimed at resolving Kashmir issue and which will be imperative for lasting peace in South Asian Region. In order to move forward on Kashmir, there should be a proper mechanism.
India and Pakistan should deal with Kashmir in such a way that future generation should not took arms. The two should learn a lesson from Germany and France who was once bitter neighbour, fought against each other in the two global wars now are the part of strong European Union, sharing a free border, both using the same Euro. India and Pakistan should repair the damage they have done from past 65 years and pledge to cooperate in economic, technological and social areas. This can be achieved by soft hand, making Line of Control as Line of cooperation to diminish and eliminate their mistrust and stubbornness.