Nawaz Shariefs Speech at UNGA:A Kashmiri Nationalistic Evaluation

Dr G.M. Athar
September 26, 2016 0 Comments OPINION 167 Views
Nawaz Shariefs Speech at UNGA:A Kashmiri Nationalistic Evaluation

The Prime Minister of Pakistan Mr Nawaz Sharief addressed the 71st Session of the United Nations General Assembly on 21st September,2016. In his speech held referred to the ongoing political unrest in Kashmir. In his speech Mr Sharief highlighted five points with respect to Kashmir. He glorified the slain Hizbul Muhjahideen Commander Burhan Wani; highlighted the human rights violations by the security forces in Kashmir; called for demilitarization of Jammu and Kashmir; stressed the need for implementation of UN resolutions on Kashmir to grant the right of self-determination to the Kashmiris and to suggested to have Indo-Pak dialogue on all outstanding bilateral issues including Jammu and Kashmir. The Kashmiri nationalists on both sides of the Line of Control demanding Aazadi are struggling for their absolute freedom from both India and Pakistan. The people of Kashmir are completely divided in their political views and aspirations. The pro-Pakistan political parties representing just 5% population of Kashmir want to make Kashmir a province of Pakistan. The pro-India Muslims and non-Muslims form up to 3% population of Kashmir. The staunch supporters of Kashmir’s absolute freedom from both India and Pakistan can be around 2% and the remaining 90% population of Kashmir want restriction of Indo-Kashmir constitutional relationship to the three areas of defense, foreign affairs and communication as given in the Instrument of Accession submitted by Maharaja Hari Singh to the government of India on 26th October 1947. The Kashmiri nationalists though representing a very small section of the Kashmir population serve as an ‘ideal ideological group’ for pro-aazadi, pro-autonomy and pro-Pakistan and even pro-India sections of population. That is why the most popular political slogans in Kashmir are “We Want Freedom” and “Hum Kya Chahtay- Aazadi”. On that logic the Kashmir nation as a whole can be characterized as a freedom loving nation aspiring to make Kashmir into an independent country. Ignoring the minor differences in the people’s political opinion in Kashmir, the Nawaz Sharief’s address to the 71st Session of the United Nations General Assembly has to be viewed from the Kashmiri nationalistic perspective. Glorifying Burhan Wani the area commander of South Kashmir amounts to glorifying Hizbul Mujahideen, the pro-Pakistan Kashmiri militant organization which is active in Kashmir since early 1990’s when Pakistan sidelined the pro-independence Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front. Burhan Wani became a symbol of resistance to Indian rule in Kashmir for all Kashmiri youth but outside Kashmir his image has been portrayed as that of a popular pro-Pakistan Hizbul Mujahideen which is not a fact in reality. He in fact represented the modern face of cyber war against Indian presence in Kashmir. There is no denial of the fact government forces are committing serious and large scale human rights violations in Kashmir but the militants coming from across the border since 1988 provoked India to send in lakhs of its more troops to stay in the troubled state. The cross- border militant infiltration and huge military presence along the L. o. C. has triggered Indo-Pak army race in the border districts of Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan can’t blame only India for human rights violation in Kashmir she has to make a sincere self-introspection and correct itself to help minimize human rights violations in Kashmir. Pakistan can’t make hollow assertions about the demilitarization of Jammu and Kashmir and ignore its responsibility to cooperate in demilitarizing the state. As per the UN resolutions Pakistan has to fully demilitarize the areas of Jammu and Kashmir under its control first. The government of India has been asked to minimize its forces in Kashmir to maintain the peace and security in the erstwhile princely state before holding the free and fair plebiscite under UN supervision. Pakistan stresses the need for granting the right of self-determination to the people of Kashmir in accordance with the UN resolutions on J&K. The Kashmiri people are befooled in the name of their ‘right to self-determination’ and UN resolutions on J&K because these resolutions are only two-option and there is no mention of the Third Option i.e. the Independent Kashmir with absolute freedom from both India and Pakistan. On the one hand Pakistan invokes UN resolutions on J&K and demands the right of self-determination for the people of Kashmir but at the same time it clubs Kashmir dispute with the baggage of its bilateral issues with India thereby accepting the bilateral framework of Shimla Agreement in 1972 to resolve Kashmir problem bilaterally without any reference to the third party. Talking of UN resolutions on J&K and Kashmir as a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan is both self-contradictory and misleading. Keeping the above facts into consideration, it can be concluded that Nawaz Sherief’s reference to Kashmir uprising has not served the cause of Kashmiri people in general and the Kashmiri nationalist political forces in particular. The speech reflected the traditional political position, deliberate confusion and unrealistic solution of Pakistan for resolving Kashmir problem. The preparation of the dossier of human rights violations by government forces in Kashmir is a welcome to highlight the pain and agony of Kashmiri people, but Pakistan can’t absolve herself from the negative contribution it made to the human rights violations in Kashmir. If Pakistan is silent about it in the said dossier then the credibility of such a document is nothing more than a one sided propaganda. The justice loving people and nations of the world must therefore come to the rescue of the bleeding Kashmiri nation.

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