Dr Muhammad Khan
Kashmir, not the Kashmiris, is what India wants in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).
At the time of operationalization of its Constitution in January 1950, India tried to entice Kashmiris of IIOJK through Article 370 (a special status), later reinforced through Article 35-A in 1954.
These measures were aimed to solace Kashmiris and provisionally stop them from demanding their right of self-determination as enunciated in UNCIP resolutions. Indeed, it was a covert strategy to gradually absorb Kashmir and Kashmiris into Indian union over the period of time.
Nevertheless, in 1990, once Kashmiris restarted their struggle against Indian illegal occupation of their land, India realized that the people of Kashmir will never accept the Indian Constitution nor will they ever accept Indian rule over the state nor they are ready to surrender their Kashmiri identity – the Kashmiriyat.
Thereafter, New Delhi principally decided to take a final drive for terrorizing and brutalizing Kashmiris for a forceful acceptance of Indian authority which Kashmiri refused to accept, rather retaliated against Indian military.
This Kashmiris’ rise was responded severely by: killing Kashmiris at will, torturing them, arresting them, burning their houses and using rape as a weapon against Kashmir women.
In this process Indian military killed over 100,000 Kashmiris, raped over 13000 women and tortured thousands of innocent Kashmiris. Ever since Modi took over as the Prime Minister of India in 2014, India has unleashed a reign of terror in IIOJK.
Under him Indian Army and paramilitary forces were ordered to shoot any Kashmiri at will with complete impunity. The Indian illegal act of annexation of IIOJK on August 5, 2019 was the ultimate, well-planned and futuristic to undo the statehood and Kashmiris’ identity as Kashmiriat.
Thereafter a fresh reign of terror was unleashed over the besieged Kashmiris with curfew imposed all over the occupied state most of the time.
In the post-August 5, 2019 genocide strategy, India is systematically killing Kashmiris as a campaign through deployment of its 900,000 security forces.
Modi’s strategy of atrocities in IIOJK has seven major parts: (One) killing Kashmiris on spot even in the presence of the entire family and children since Indian military and paramilitary forces have complete impunity under Indian special power acts; AFSPA and PSA.
(Two) arrest the people and take them to detention centres where they are put through a heartless process of tease and torture until death or paralysis.
(Three) Three, arrest and execution either through stage managed fake encounters or else custodial killings. (Four) detonating and burning of houses after alleging that Kashmiri activists are inside these houses, thus there are threats of retaliation to Indian security forces.
(Five) persecution and raping of Kashmiri women while blaming them for providing protection to their relatives, struggling for their right of self-determination.
(Six) undertaking massive demographic changes in IIOJK to reduce the percentage of Muslim population by illegally settling the non-Kashmiri Hindu population from various parts of India.
Under new domicile law of April 1, 2020, India has issued millions of domicile certificates to non-Kashmiri Hindus from various parts of India which is a grave violation of Fourth Geneva Convention.
Article 49(6) of Fourth Geneva Convention prohibits occupying power(s) to transfer its own population into the occupied territory. Indeed, this is yet another aspect, covered under the blatant human rights violation.
(Seven) using NIA (National Investigation Authority) as a tool to search any Kashmiri individually, their houses, offices, work places and the community centres just to harass, tease and torture Kashmiris. NIA arrests the Kashmiri masses just on suspicion for their alleged linkages with Pakistan.
All these acts of Indian military, its paramilitary forces and NIA are part of larger Indian strategy of achieving the total control over IIOJK at any cost, may be the genocide of the people of Kashmir, especially the Kashmiri youth.
The worst part of this Indian strategy is that, it is not challenged by any one and any state, any international forum, any human rights organization, any major power, any Muslim state, OIC and, above all, the United Nations Organization which has passed over two dozen resolutions about the disputed nature of Jammu and Kashmir and right of self-determination of Kashmiris.
In the absence of any international accountability or even condemnation of its brutal acts against Kashmiris, India gets inspiration to further intensify the process of Kashmiris genocide through brutal use of its over 900,000 security forces deployed in IIOJK.
India is using the systematic process of genocide of Kashmiris as a last resort for controlling and illegally consolidating its occupation of IIOJK.
Indian strategic partnership with major powers, its superior diplomacy, its media overtures and political engagements all over the globe are providing shield over Indian acts of genocide in IIOJK.
Whereas India is perpetrating massive human rights violations in IIOJK through abovementioned strategy, the question arises; do we have a strategy to counter the Indian terrible acts in IIOJK.
Indeed, there is no such strategy or Kashmir policy with Pakistan to pursue the resolution of Kashmir dispute.
In the absence of a clear Kashmir Policy, no worthwhile action could be initiated to counter the Indian atrocities in IIOJK and its illegal act of annexing the state with Indian Union as union territories.
As a way forward, let’s formulate a Kashmir policy with a clear aim to resolve the dispute as per the wishes of Kashmiris in the light of UN resolutions.
The Kashmir policy must entail the strategies like (a) compelling India to immediately stop the human rights violations in IIOJK, (b) constraining India from making the demographic changes in IIOJK, (c) demilitarization of population centres in IIOJK, restricting military deployment only along the Ceasefire Line (LoC), (d) restoration of statehood of IIOJK with special status as it was before 1951 and (e) negotiations under UN for the resolution of Kashmir dispute as per the UN resolutions.
The writer is Professor of Politics and IR at International Islamic University, Islamabad.