The Longer the UN, World Powers Ignore Jammu And Kashmir, The More Dangerous The Crisis Will Become
Recently, the situation in Indian-Occupied Kashmir has been raising alarm bells throughout the world as tens of thousands of additional Indian troops were deployed, a major Hindu pilgrimage was cancelled, schools and colleges were shut and, tourists were ordered to leave Now the telephone and internet services have been suspended and regional political leaders are placed under house arrest. As of 2 days ago, these representatives are locked up while major decisions are being taken in Indian parliament
Enough to say how India intends to treat Kashmir and its people once the last protection is gone after the abrogation of Article 370.
This Article 370 was at the heart of Kashmir’s conditional accession to India. It guaranteed Kashmir a special status and a great degree of autonomy, including exemption from the Indian constitution. Article 370 (1) (d) of the constitution accords special rights and privileges to the ‘permanent residents’ of the Kashmir in government jobs, land acquisition and other public welfare projects.
Only state subjects i.e. Kashmiris could own property in Kashmir. Its abrogation means India would have unchecked access to and ownership of Kashmiri land. The first step to how occupied territories is erased off world maps.
Additionally, the central government of India has a say in Kashmir only on 3 matters: defence, foreign affairs, and finance/ communications. Everything else needs to go through the elected state government.
Abrogation of Article 370 is a direct attack on the political status and the demography of Kashmir. It takes away the last of hope that Kashmiris have had for self-determination. It would give yet another free-hand to the Indian state to do whatever they like with Kashmiris.
As many would argue, this was the only thing that made India a legitimate power in the state. With this gone, it’s nothing but an occupational force. Enough to say how India intends to treat Kashmir and its people once this last protection is gone.
The Indian decision of abrogating article 370 and 35 A that guarantees the special status of the State of Jammu and Kashmir has been rejected and condemned by the leadership and insisting to resolved and pursue the struggle to protect the unique and historical identity of the State of Jammu and Kashmir against all challenges.
An attempt to amend or abrogate article 370 and 35 A would be deemed as an act of further aggression and assault on the Rights of the people of the State. More to the point, such attempts are in open contravention of the UN Resolution No 122 adopted on January 24, 1957, No 123 adopted on February 21, 1957 and No 126 adopted on December 2, 1957. These resolutions prohibit any unilateral action to change the disputed nature of the State of Jammu and Kashmir.
It is to be noted that the United Nations Security Council Resolution No 122 “reaffirms the affirmation of its resolution 91 (1951) and declares that the convening of a constituent assembly as recommended by the General council of the ‘All Jammu and Kashmir National Conference’ and any action that assembly may have taken or might attempt to take to determine the future shape and affiliation of the entire State or any part thereof, or any action by the parties concerned in support of any such action by the assembly, would not constitute a disposition of the State in accordance with the above principle.”
It is beyond doubt that the longer the uncertainties continue and the longer the United Nations and world powers ignore Jammu and Kashmir, the more dangerous and intractable the crisis becomes. The crisis requires immediate diplomacy that recognizes the explosive situation on the ground in Jammu and Kashmir and takes immediate measures to avert it before.
Pakistan has abided by the UN resolutions and always as a nation has stood with Kashmir people and their right of self-determination.
The writer is the president of Association of Physicians of Pakistani Decent of North America (APPNA) 2019.