Kashmir Truth Be Told Blog
Yus neereth gassan, pheereth cha yevaano: morda che gassan zinde (Kashmiri saying)

1/1/09

Say 'no' to the fear-mongers

Isn't it time someone stood up to the fear-mongering pro-India parties? They would like us to be fearful of the 'might' of the Indian forces. These pro-India parties warn us that the sooner we toed the Indian diktat and behaved like subservient inhabitants of a captured colony, the sooner the number of Indian army personnel stationed in Kashmir will be brought down to ease our miseries caused by their unwelcome presence in our country. As if a reduction of a few thousand soldiers out of a million and a half Indian barbaric army would make much of a difference anyways.

They lecture us that the dream of self-determination is unachievable. Another example of fear-mongering; but look around the world. The world is full of examples of similar small countries who according to nay-sayers should never have attained their freedom or right of self-determination or referedum - whatever name you want to call this basic of democratic principles. East Timur, Kosovo, Quebec, Ireland, and yes, the ironic case of India's own independence from Britain.

What does it take to keep the flame of freedom burning in a Kashmiri's heart? A willingness to suffer the consequences rather than surrendering our basic right of freedom. A profound sense of obligation toward the 200, 000 brothers and sisters who sacrificed their lives for Kashmir. And when the challenge is hardest, when the Indian barbarians imprison the entire population of Kashmir for straight eight days, when they lock down the Jamia Masjid for four weeks , when they arrest, torture, and murder innocent freedom fighters just to break our will, and when the pro-India parties are shaking their heads and hoping we will finally cower and join them - to say, "No - India can go to hell".

Join your fellow countrymen and women in observing Self-determination Day on January 5th.

8 comments:

  1. Koshur

    Yet again would i try and question the basic premise...India was formed in 1947...and it was made up of more than 500 princely states, so in essence i lived in the awadh state or the jaipur state or the murshidabad state prior to that. We were all countries, and not indians...and its only in 1947 that we became indians (or pakistanis as the case be).
    We can not go back and obliviate the past, the kingdoms of 1100 onwards, when delhi was ruled by a muslim sultan, or when kashmir was won over by the lahore sikh kings or the dogras, most of the sultans and kings were deeply unpopular with their populance, and thus it was in essence good that a kingless india was formed by amulgumation of these states. And, like it or not, kashmir was one of the states. Lest, you consider it that way, I am completely against the army being out of the baracks, and the civilised society should not have this happening, unfortunately this is happening in kashmir. However, the army is finally made up of individual soilders, and it is them who make or break the reputation, or the faith in the indian machinery.
    As far as the states you have mentioned go, you are spelling the death knell for the nation states, East timor had a civil war no sooner than it was liberated, and it (hopefully) ended only now, over 3 years of fighting- almost one fifth of the population was either killed or maimed. Kosovo needs no introduction, as far as anarhcy in the state go, Quebec finally voted to remain a part of canada, and ireland is still under occupation of Britain(the northern part that is).

    Koshur, no society is perfect, no action without a reaction, this latest round of agitation against amarnath land...what has it brought to you, 40 lost lives, hundreds of wounds - both physical and mental, and a rejuvenated BJP in the assembly, Kashmiris still voted the same way- split between congress, NC and PDP, the so called indian state leaders....its ur favorite to compare indian state to israel, and urself to palestinians.....pray tell me- israel does not allow fule and milk to move into gaza, there is a complete blockade....land, air and sea, the only time there was a blockade from jammu people(mind you people form ur own state and not indian government), indian government airlifted medicines to srinagar....fuel was made available from the army stockpiles, there was never a electricity blockade, when you say india is becoming a part of US-israel axes, tell me the last time indian air force bombarded the villages ( here s good commentary on the israel and US tactics - http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-bromwich/rules-of-engagement-from_b_154669.html ) there are sane people and insane people everywhere, the majority everywhere is humane, who do not want ot encroach upon others, the minority always wants more -snatching from others, and as luck would have it, its always the minority who has the louder pitch of the voice.

    I wish you all the best for the self determination day....and request you to ponder over - the question, what shoudl b ethe way forward from the self determintation...what is it that you need to achieve, and what are the steps that you need to take to be there....lest you find urself in another east timor, killing and looting others.....

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  2. @erebus
    thankyou for the comment.

    I agree for the most part with your account of the brief history of the subcontinent when it involves the states south of the pir-panjal; however I take issue with you somehow oversimplifying how Kashmir came into the picture. You claim that, "thus it was in essence good that a kingless india was formed by amulgumation of these states. And, like it or not, kashmir was one of the states."

    If it was that simple, then we wouldnt have a freedom struggle in Kashmir to begin with. Nehru would not have promised to hold a plebiscite here, and the UN would never have passed a resolution. You see, all these events did not take place for the rest of the Indian states, and thus Kashmir remains an unresolved issue for lack of maturity on India's part to overcome this notion of "like it or not, Kashmir is an integral part of India" mentality.

    You agree that your army is guilty of committing horrrendous crimes in Kashmir. I commend you for that. That is why Kashmir-India relations are at a point of no return. You cannot kill, rape, and maime quarter of a million Kashmiris and then expect us to forget all that and "share in the Indian dream". Not going to happen. Before I have the opportunity to complete my above statement, some keen "bharti" will want to shout me down by pointing out the "hallmark" of Indian generosity by holding the so called "free and fair" farcical elections here. You will lecture us to respect the aspirations of the 60% of the electorate that participated in these elections. Fair enough, if you are so confident that 60% of Kashmiris participated in these farcical elections, and thus by extension of that argument they whole heartedly endorse Indian rule in Kashmir, then what is the hesitation in granting Kashmiris the long promised plebiscite? After all, it was your Nehru who promised us that, and the UN resolutions are long over due? why the hesitation when you keep harping that 60% of Kashmiris want to stay with India. (Indians should wake up from their revery I must add)

    You brought up Israel's treatment of palestinians and want us to be thankful that the Indian army isnt bombarding entire villages in Kashmir. Well, we havent forgotten the recent 8 day curfew where Kashmiri expectant mothers were beaten for wanting to get to the hospital. Or entire villages pillaged by your army in a crackdown. I have no interest in listing the roster of atrocities committed by your barbaric army, but please google them and you'll get some reliable sources that will list them in chronological order which you may compare with Israeli actions at your pleasure. I promise the Indian actions in Kashmir will turn out just as evil and heinous as the Israelis in Palestine.

    All the questions that you seek in the last para have been beaten to death many times over. please visit the Kashmir Forum site where I have had many a good debate on the same issues http://kashmir.forumakers.com/

    Have a good new year.

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  3. Koshur

    Even if you think that Kashmir should gain complete political independence from India, the path you are choosing to go is the most difficult amongst all the alternatives.

    You have to understand your enemy (in this case, the Indian state) before you can fight it. There are three crucial bargaining chips for India before it can accede to a UN plebiscite in Kashmir.

    (1) India will demand that the population of Kashmir be returned to its pre-1947 borders. That is, (a) all the Punjabis that have settled in the Pak-occupied Kashmir have to vacate their land (b) China should retract from Aksai-Chin (c) Hindu Kashmiri Pandits should be settled back in the valley

    (2) India will demand that a similar plebiscite be held in Pukthookhwa, which also has a very doubtful and contested accession to the Pakistani state. (Similar plebiscites will be then demanded by Pakistan in Nagaland and by India in Baluchistan).

    (3) India will demand that the future constitution of Kashmir be "secular" with complete seperation of powers from government and religion.

    There is significant opposition to these issues even by people who are fighting for Kashmiri independence.

    It is more logical (and ethical) to fight for independence through active politics & participation in the electoral process, which Hurriyat is absconding. Any path towards autonomy or independence is bound to be gradual. Even the Indian independence from Britain came out as a very gradual process, not by some miracle overnight.

    This means the Kashmiri "freedom-fighters" should be more patient and diligent and get each of their specific demands passed : (1) reduce the presence of army in the valley (2) allow transparent borders and free transit of people across both the occupied regions of Kashmir (4) Get the back-bones of the Kashmiri constitution ready, and implement it in the provincial court of justice (5) decouple the taxation from the federal state. None of these objectives can be achieved by terrorism or fedayeen attacks by uneducated youngsters.

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  4. @Ray

    Thankyou for the comment and sorry it took a while to share my views on the points that you raised.

    I highly doubt that your point#2 will ever be a contentious issue since the UN resolutions pertain to Kashmir only, and any other issues raised by either country would be considered meddling in each other's internal affairs. Because the UN recognizes Kashmir as disputed territory, it is not an internal issue of either country.

    There are less than 800 armed militants in Kashmir. Almost none are involved in terrorism. (Defn of terrorism: attacks on civilians, and public infrastructure)

    I for one agree with you that it is time Hurriyat fielded proxy candidates to run the "administration" in Kashmir. I can assure you that by the next election, I will have convinced them.

    Hope you had a good new year.

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  5. Koshur

    The dispute of Pukthoonkhwa is between Pakistan and Afghanistan. No Afghan government has recognized the validity of the Durand line, whose legal validity has ended (as in the British stewardship of Hong Kong).

    NWFP has not been given the option of independence or joining Afghanistan during the partition : the only options provided were joining India or Pakistan. The Loya Jirga of Pashtuns itself has declared the Durand Line invalid in 1949. In a future plebiscite Kashmiris will very well demand the option of independence, NWFP will demand a similar right.

    Neither Afghanistan or Pakistan has approached the UN on the dispute of NWFP. But the Afghan government will approach the UN (and India will support it) as long as it gets sufficiently independent or strong.

    So yes, the Kashmir and Pukthoonkhwa issues are very much related and linked. There is no escape.

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  6. To Ray Lightning
    The same old Indian crookry. Let their be referendum in Kashmir first. NWFP had acceded to Pak legally. Their was no Tyrant who did the accession in NWFP. But in Kashmir story is altogether different.
    British East India Company sold (leased) the state of J & K to Gulab Singh Dogra for 70 lac Nanak Shahi Rupees (Rs 7 per head of Kashmiris) on 14th of March 1846. The deal is known as Treaty of Amritsar and the validity of the treaty was only 100 years. That means on 15 th of March 1946 the Dogra rule legally had to end. But Dogras violated the treaty and did not relinquish the power. From March 15th 1946 onwards Dogra rule on J&K was totally illegal. Thus an illegal ruler, occupier, despotic tyrant had no right to accede J&K to India in 1947. I have given you the facts, you first try to digest these, then I will cite you hundreds of other facts about the Illegality of accession of J & K with India. India is an Occupier and uses all the means available to it to hoodwink the world opinion. So, by talking about NWFP or other places you cannot blackmail UN. You must leave Kashmir to save India from disintegration. Visit www.kashmircries.blogspot.com

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  7. @Koshur
    The army was brutal, but they did not move in there for fun...Pray tell me, why wa sthe army out prior to 1989. And also, please let me know, with your true heart, that the mukhbirs(informants), very much from the civil society, did not take out personal grudges against their neighbours by simply pointing them out as terrorists, who then were taken away by the army.....army knew noone, ur people knew everyone....any ways that is besides the point....YOu blindly follow ur leaders, please do not be a pack of sheep, think beyond the propaganda(same applies to us on this side of the banihal as well)
    The plebicite was to be held in the entire state of Jammu and Kashmir, and the combined decision had to be considered. Also, it was to be held once the entire pakistani militia had moved out of the geographical boundaries of Jammu and Kashmir state. Below is the text of the resolution
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    The United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan.

    Having given careful consideration to the points of view expressed by the representatives of India and Pakistan regarding the situation in the State of Jammu and Kashmir; and

    Being of the opinion that the prompt cessation of hostilities and the correction of conditions the continuance of which is likely to endanger international peace and security are essential to implementation of its endeavors to assist the Governments of India and Pakistan in effecting a final settlement of the situation;

    Resolves to submit simultaneously to the Governments of India and Pakistan the following proposal:

    PART I: CEASE-FIRE ORDER
    A. The Governments of India and Pakistan agree that their respective High Commands will issue separately and simultaneously a cease-fire order to apply to all forces under their control and in the State of Jammu and Kashmir as of the earliest practicable date or dates to be mutually agreed upon within four days after these proposals have been accepted by both Governments.

    B.The High Commands of the Indian and Pakistani forces agree to refrain from taking any measures that might augment the military potential of the forces under their control in the State of Jammu and Kashmir. ( For the purpose of these proposals forces under their control shall be considered to include all forces, organized and unorganized, fighting or participating in hostilities on their respective sides.

    C.The Commanders-in-Chief of the forces of India and Pakistan shall promptly confer regarding any necessary local changes in present dispositions which may facilitate the cease-fire.

    D. In its discretion and as the Commission may find practicable, the Commission will appoint military observers who, under the authority of the Commission and with the co-operation of both Commands, will supervise the observance of the cease-fire order.

    E. The Government of India and the Government of Pakistan agree to appeal to their respective peoples to assist in creating and maintaining an atmosphere favourable to the promotion of further negotiations.

    PART II: TRUCE AGREEMENT
    Simultaneously with the acceptance of the proposal for the immediate cessation of hostilities as outlined in Part I, both the Governments accept the following principles as a basis for the formulation of a truce agreement, the details of which shall be worked out in discussion between their representatives and the Commission.
    A.

    1. As the presence of troops of Pakistan in the territory of the State of Jammu and Kashmir constitutes a material change in the situation since it was represented by the Government of Pakistan before the Security Council, the Government of Pakistan agrees to withdraw its troops from that State.

    2. The Government of Pakistan will use its best endeavour to secure the withdrawal from the State of Jammu and Kashmir of tribesmen and Pakistani nationals not normally resident therein who have entered the State for the purpose of fighting.

    3. Pending a final solution, the territory evacuated by the Pakistani troops will be administered by the local authorities under the surveillance of the commission.

    B.

    1.When the commission shall have notified the Government of India that the tribesmen and Pakistani nationals referred to in Part II, A, 2, hereof have withdrawn, thereby terminating the situation which was represented by the Government of India to the Security Council as having occasioned the presence of Indian forces in the State of Jammu and Kashmir, and further, that the Pakistani forces are being withdrawn from the State of Jammu and Kashmir, the Government of India agrees to begin to withdraw the bulk of its forces from that State in stages to be agreed upon with the Commission.

    2. Pending the acceptance of the conditions for a final settlement of the situation in the State of Jammu and Kashmir, the Indian Government will maintain within the lines existing at the moment of the cease-fire the minimum strength of its forces which in agreement with the commission are considered necessary to assist local authorities in the observance of law and order. The Commission will have observers stationed where it deems necessary.

    3. The Government of India will undertake to ensure that the Government of the State of Jammu and Kashmir will take all measures within its powers to make it publicly known that peace, law and order will be safeguarded and that all human political rights will be granted.

    4. Upon signature, the full text of the truce agreement or a communique containing the principles thereof as agreed upon between the two Governments and the Commission, will be made public.

    PART III

    The Government of India and the Government of Pakistan reaffirm their wish that the future status of the State of Jammu and Kashmir shall be determined in accordance with the will of the people and to that end, upon acceptance of the truce agreement, both Governments agree to enter into consultations with the Commission to determine fair and equitable conditions whereby such free expression will be assured.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Please note points Part II - POints A and B. HOpe that should make things evidently clear.
    There are two things worth mentioning - ONe pakistan had to withdraw the forces(never happened), and second that the netire state would either stay with INdia or Pakistan or independent, and that Jammu would overwhelmingly oppose any change in status.

    Legal status apart, the fact is that 1989 onwards things could have been handled better....in fact far better....Pakistan instigated the youth for the valley, and the end result was the hostalities that erupted between the general populance and the army. BUt again, armies are not for counter insurgency operations, they are for war, and they did that....it is unfortunate, yet we need to find a solution together....and i really wish we could do away with the so called "brokers" - the leaders on both sides of banihal away, we do not want army to settle scores with the political opponents. We need them for our security - in the barracks.

    BAck to Palestine - I would sincerely request you to know what is happening here, though i still maintain, that has nothing to do for me and you. I never said that you should be thankful. all i said is that things are different, please do not try to read betwene the lines...there is nothing between them. I have stayed in Egypt, closer to the GAza border for close to 2 months, and have seen the way things are there....and i have been to srinagar and pahalgam many times,and trust me the situation is something you could not even fathom. The very fact that that you are writing your memoirs on this blog, and that i could comment on your blog, talks heaps about india. The fact that you were allowed to continue with the hartals and chalo-s, is a good enough proof that indian democrarcy may not be perfect but is at least workable. How do you explain pregnant women not reaching hospitals from the villages since it is a hartal....and there are no taxis and buses available...how do you explain the rapes and tortures by the terrorists(freedom fighters for you) all the way from 91-current. Are the human rights only for the army, how do you explain the killing of Maulvi Farooq? He was one of your own, and lastly you touchy topic....How do you explain the rapes of pandit girls, how do you explain the loss of lives of all those you considered the "agents" of indian state....??? Where were the rules of the UNHCR then??? The terrorist killed just about anyone they thought were indian agents, they killed to settle political scores(they still do), HOw do you explain the bribes being taken by the J&K police(mind you ethnic kashmiris all) to issue the identity cards and Noc for government compensation. i m sure you would know people across the LoC - the "Azad Kashmir" - ask people who are there neighbours, and who owns the businesses - its the punjabis who have been settled there in the last 60 years, All my kashmiri friends have bought out houses all across the countyr including delhi, i can not buy a piece of land in kashmir, that is what india has allowed you. i m not talking about indian magnimity, lest you fele that way.....all i m saying is that no society is perfect, we have to strive to make it perfect.


    @Kashmir Center
    OK, dogras were illegal occupants of the kashmir valley, i guess you'll agree that Sheikh Abdullah was your leader( the muslim conference was cretaed before independence and fought against the dogras), and he too agreed to the accession to india. SO much so, that Pakistan officially described him as an agent of nehru.

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  8. Koshur
    Please, publish the link to Kashmir Center blog on your blog. Please visit Kashmir Center for the latest posts.
    Thank you

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