Dr Sahibzada Muhammad Usman
Since the partition of the sub-continent, Kashmir remained a disputed territory. Its history goes back to Rajas, who had ruled six hundred thirty-five princely states. Maharaja Hari Singh was the ruler of Kashmir; whether he argued on the Indian side or not, it remains a controversy. Pakistan and India fought three wars and a severe escalation (Kargil) regarding disputed territories. The situation in Kashmir before the passage of Articles 370 and 35A wasn’t a covert ceding of governmental authority. The region is characterized by youth hurling stones, frequent terror attacks, citizens living in fear, and a dearth of noteworthy infrastructure or economic development.
In order to grasp the post-Article 370 environment in Kashmir, one must first get acquainted with it. As a result, under Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, Jammu and Kashmir was granted a remarkable degree of autonomy. Jammu & Kashmir is given a special status under Article 370 of Part XXI of the Indian Constitution, which is dedicated to “Temporary, Transitional, and Unique Provisions.”
Article 35A was inserted by presidential decree in 1954 in order to preserve the former provisions of the territorial law under Article 370 of the Indian Constitution. According to the provision, Kashmir, which is ruled by India, has the authority to choose who is qualified to get permanent residency. Foreign nationals are not allowed to establish themselves permanently, own property, run for local office, or get financial aid for local education. According to the article termed as the Permanent Residents Law, females of Jammu and Kashmir residents who marry a person from outside the state are likewise denied property rights. These mothers’ children are also covered under this section.
Since New Delhi unilaterally decided to revoke Article 370 and split the state of J&K into two union territories, all Kashmiri politicians had previously been imprisoned. The Valley was closed off from the outside world, and tens of thousands of security personnel were sent.
The Valley’s residents now see a higher threat as a consequence of the autonomy’s abolition without the consent of the Kashmiris. Since August 5, people’s fears and mistrust of issues relating to their ethnicity and culture, such as language, religion, and customs have increased. Foreigners would flock to the Valley after Article 370 was abolished because it would be perceived as a development effort, according to research done and published in September 2019 by the Concerned Citizens Group (CCG) in New Delhi. Local residents fear that the government may use population shift to establish veteran and Kashmiri Pandit settlement enclaves.
Concerns are allayed by specific examples of dishonest behavior by politicians in Kashmir and New Delhi. For instance, Union Minister G Kishan Reddy said on September 23, 2019, that more than “50,000 temples” in J&K had been closed over the years, many of which had suffered damage and had vandals destroy their sculptures. He said that “we have commissioned a study of such temples” and that the government planned to repair these temples swiftly. Sanjay Tickoo, a well-known Kashmiri Pandit politician with a stronghold in Srinagar and the head of the Kashmiri Pandit Sangarish Samiti (KPSS), asserts that there are only 4,000 temples in J&K.
After August 5, there was a paucity of communication from New Delhi, which made people more anxious and uneasy. The previous state laws became ultra-vires once Article 370 was abolished, which rendered legislation from the Union of India automatically applicable in J&K, was repealed. Many people are perplexed as to why hundreds of teenagers, members of civil society, and even former chief ministers are imprisoned, given that the Public Safety Act (PSA) and other harsh laws approved by the previous state assembly are still in effect. People say they have been treated like second-class citizens since Article 370 was removed under the guise of “one constitution, one rule of law”. Additionally, they demand the instant and immediate release of every prisoner who is now incarcerated after being found guilty of violating the PSA.
Many political experts and diplomats accounted for the Indian end of 35A as the start of the maintenance of the Israeli model in IOK to change the statistics and move Muslims of Kashmir towards the status of minority. It is also a so-called conspiracy of India and a policy to increase Hindus in the region and to establish Kashmir as a Hindu Majority territory. There is more to it than simply India’s reputation; there is proof that India is assassinating a significant number of Muslims there, in an attempt to lower the percentage of Muslims.
Ex-Prime Minister Imran Khan cautioned that India made a mistake in Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Many protests were recorded after the repeal of Kashmir’s special by Modi regime. India used a coercive policy to control the protestors and killed many Kashmiri people in the Valley. The Kashmir conflict has drawn increased attention in the west and drawn attention to the way that the Indian armed forces are treating its inhabitants.
Thousands of responses from Pakistan have also supported Kashmir. The National Security Committee also made significant choices. The government must plan how the populace will respond in order to stop any one group or militant organization from launching the first military attack against India. Because Mr. Modi’s government is looking at Islamabad for the first strike, Pakistan’s first strike would badly affect and decrease the support of IOS (International Organizations) and superpowers for Pakistan. Islamabad has officially adopted a policy to go to the United Nations Security Council, which is the best option for both Kashmir and Pakistan.
However, the option of the UNSC is like a chance or a lucky committee because of the existence of veto by any P5 country. On August 12, 2019, Pakistan’s foreign minister said that any P5 member state in the UNSC may reject our petition or resolution since China is India’s biggest market and various other countries have invested there.
The Hindutva ideology advocated by the Narendra Modi-led BJP Government, which seeks to “saffronize” India and turn it into a Hindu-dominated “Hindustan,” is India’s endeavor to change the status of the controversial state of Jammu and Kashmir. It has done so in violation of its own Constitution as well as democratic ideals and UN Security Council resolutions that acknowledge Pakistan as a legitimate party to the international dispute and guarantee the people of Kashmir the opportunity to decide their future in a free and fair plebiscite under UN supervision.
1. India must restore Articles 370 – 35A and start a discussion with Pakistan under the UN resolution to find a suitable solution that benefits the Kashmiri people.
2. Indian media is still denying facts, showing pictures of some shops in Kashmir, and trying to cover the story of protests. The fair argument is that this strategy of Indian media is not a success for India. Instead, India is trying to cover her failure in Kashmir as a form of transmission of normal Kashmir. Indian media should recognize the precarious situation and curfew in the Valley, and it will provide an opportunity for experts to discuss the solution.
3. The international community should emphasize the several documents the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights received following Resolutions 370 and 35A regarding Indian troops’ violations of human rights in IIOJK.
4. The Council of Foreign Ministers of the OIC should more publicly denounce India’s actions in the IIOJK and reduce commercial ties with India.
5. The people of IIOJK have the freedom of choice under the UN Charter and many decisions of the UN Security Council, especially the UN (UNCIP) resolutions. Therefore, the UN must compel the Indian government to cease violating UN resolutions.
6. Studying the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s (RSS) ties to Nazism is crucial if you want to understand its violent ideas. It explains precisely how the RSS relates to Nazism and how the aggressive Hindu doctrine was used against innocent Kashmiris in IIOJK.
7. Arundhati Roy’s book “AZADI: Freedom. Fascism. Fiction” has unquestionably superior literary characteristics, and many of the arguments she makes and data she uses to support her claim that Modi supporters are fascists are found on logic, rationality, and reason. And explain the government’s breaches of human rights.
The author is Ph.D from University of Pisa, Italy.