Abdul Qayyum Chaudhry
Over a period of two years and two months it has been a sombre epoch that our Kashmiri brothers and sisters remain under a ruthless military siege. It is also a proclamation that the self-sacrificing spirit of freedom, imbued in the people of Kashmir by their forefathers remains undiminished. No amount of brutal oppression and atrocities by Indian Armed Forces has been able to dent the very resolve of Kashmiris.
Kashmiri diaspora was inactive due to the coronavirus situation and after August 05, 2019, unconstitutional Indian measures in occupied Kashmir gave birth to a new situation and there was a huge increase in Indian state terrorism.
In this situation President Azad Jammu and Kashmir Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry decided to speak out against the ongoing atrocities in occupied Kashmir and raise the Kashmir issue before the international community, for which he visited the United States in September and the United Kingdom and Europe in October.
During his visit to the United States, he led a demonstration of Kashmiris on the occasion of Modi’s address to the UN General Assembly. In addition to addressing the OIC Contact Group meeting, including a meeting with the UN Secretary General, the OIC Permanent Representative to the UN and meetings with US Congressmen, senators and think tanks and the international media on the current situation in occupied Kashmir, he gave briefings on the Kashmir issue.
While he was sworn in as a President of the State of Jammu and Kashmir, Sultan promised to raise the issue of Kashmir aggressively on the world stage because Azad Kashmir is the base camp of independence.
During his visit to the UK, he attended a function on behalf of Lord Mayor City Council Leeds at Leeds City Council and also addressed a function of Kashmiris in Birmingham on the occasion of Azad Kashmir Foundation Day on 24 October.
Afterwards, he addressed press conferences at various events in the British cities of Luton, Milton, Connaught and Slough. Similarly, he also addressed the British members of Parliament at the House of Commons in London on 26th October at the invitation of Debbie Abraham, Chairperson of the All Party Kashmir Committee in the British Parliament. More than 40 members of Parliament attended the meeting.
Similarly, in London, he met with Labor Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and Conservative Friends of Kashmir Chairman James Daly to brief them on the Kashmir issue and the ongoing Indian atrocities in occupied Kashmir. Later, he met with members of the European Parliament and other senior EU officials, including the Kashmiris protesting in Brussels, Belgium, and called on the EU to appoint a representative on Kashmir.
He participated in a demonstration of Kashmiris in front of the International Court of Justice in The Hague, the capital of the Netherlands, while he also participated in a huge demonstration of Kashmiris in Paris, the capital of France, and met with French think tanks there: He gave a detailed briefing on Kashmir issue.
Fortunately, the State President Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry is not only a captivating personality but also a legendary and eminent politician of Azad Kashmir who is rendering his matchless services to apprise the international community about the continued carnage and gross human right violations committed by 900,000 Indian troops deployed in the Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).
The Veteran Kashmiri leader, Quaid Kashmir Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry has carried out five million marches including one Million March from Trafalgar Square in London to Ten Downing Street in 2014, the second Million March in front of the United Nations in New York in 2015 and third March in Belgium’s capital Brussels in the year 2016 in front of the European Union and the European Parliaments. Similarly, in 2017, there was Million March in Dublin, the capital of Ireland, and in 2018, there was Million March on the Berlin Wall in Berlin, Germany in which Indian barbarism was highlighted in front of international community. It is pertinent to mention here that this effort of Million March to enunciate the thorny struggle course of Kashmiris is still going on.
Being diplomatic and defense analyst, I after meeting with the leading Kashmiri leader, Barrister Sultan in person on numerous occasions as well as peeping into his struggle through national and international academic circles, it was not difficult for me to establish the fact that by following the foreign policy of Pakistan, Barrister Sultan Mahmood Chaudhry has played a significant, proactive and pre-emptive role by visiting, addressing as well as formulating Kashmir Committees in British parliament, European parliament, Canadian parliament, Norwegian parliament, House of Lords, House of Commons and American Congress thereby checkmating Indian narrative and Indian lobsters in the world practically.
Unquestionably, India is afraid of the street power of an identically famed leader like Barrister Sultan who can gather thousands of people on his one call to organize protest rallies, processions and demonstrations in all cities of the United Kingdom, United States and European Countries and beyond, without any government designation.
History is testimony to the fact that President Azad Jammu and Kashmir Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry is the only influential Kashmiri leader of the Azad region who made a remarkable and historic visit to Indian illegally occupied Kashmir in 2013 as a first former Prime Minister, where on the one hand, he met senior Kashmiri Hurriyat leaders, the leaders of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference, including the great Kashmiri leader Syed Ali Gilani, Nishan-e-Pakistan. On the other hand, Barrister Sultan had challenged India by standing in the middle of Lal Chowk in Srinagar in front of the 900,000 Indian armed troops which clearly establishes the fact that he is a fearless and brave Kashmiri leader who is not only very committed to the noble cause of Kashmir but has the capability to lead from the front.
Hence, planned protests had caused deep unrest in Indian circles, as India doen’t want to let the world know regarding the “dark side of her designs of suppressing and brutalizing its minorities at all levels”.
It is worthwhile to be mentioned here that everyone has been acknowledging the untiring efforts of President of Azad State Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry who has played a tangible role to call on the western powers to end their silence and hold India accountable for committing the worst kind of atrocities, suppressive measures and human rights violations in Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).
Barrister Sultan is the leading figure of the Kashmir struggle for right to self-determination. In recognition of initiation of longstanding struggle for the noble cause of the Kashmir all around the world, Sultan has been bestowed the popular title of “Quaid Kashmir” by the Kashmiri nation. It is meaningful to be mentioned here that many prominent domestic and international writers have recognized his role as the noteworthy leader of longstanding Kashmir struggle.
Kashmiris have been the biggest victim of this injustice. Over 100,000 of them have been butchered but India acts as it’s a civilised country when it clearly is a barbaric government applying the tactics used by Hitler.
Kashmiris are determined to continue their journey to freedom and self-determination despite all Indian oppression. Kashmiris have always shown bravery, resilience and perseverance in the face of injustice and state brutality. A defeat of India is the writing on the wall. The day is not far when the people of Kashmir will be free from the yolk of Indian occupation. Insha’Allah.
(The author is diplomatic and defence Analyst)