Kashmir issue a victim of topsy-turvy policies: Shaukat


Kashmir issue a victim of topsy-turvy policies: Shaukat

Weekly Bang-e-Sahar karachi Saturday, September 13——-September 19, 2008

BRUSSELS: The World Vision’s bureau chief at Brussels Mr Manzar Aqeel Haider held a meeting with Kashmir People’s National Party Chairman Sardar Shaukat Ali Kahmiri at the Belgian capital and discussed various important issues including the Kashmir dispute.
In reply to a question, Mr Kashmiri said the present impasse in Kashmir was a continuation of history and past happenings in the region though the nature of the war has changed. Today the intra-capital turmoil has come to the fore at the international level as compared to the Cold War era in which the situation was quite different. At that time the world was divided into two blocs of the United Sates and the then USSR. During the Cold War too, many countries under the leadership of India formed the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in order to keep their nations out of the imbroglio of the two-bloc confrontation.
He said today’s situation is a result of the struggle between the `war capital’ and `consumer capital’ to hold their monopoly on the major world markets. He said the industry and capital based on war paraphernalia and trade would want to see major world disputes remain unresolved and new ones cropped up. On the contrary, the consumer capital would like to see peace prevailing in the world, democracy promoted and nations getting on track to economic progress, so that industries and people engaged in the sector got boosted. So, the consumer capital is always out to promote peace in the world for its own interest.
“When we look at the political situation in Pakistan, it becomes clear that the policy makers, secret agencies and the armed forces are still mired in the romance of the Cold War era, when international capitalism was supporting the rulers of the day to facilitate their win against the then USSR. However, after the disintegration of the USSR, when the so-called mujahidden fighting the proxy war became irrelevant the war took a different turn. The erstwhile allies of the US – the military and the so-called mujahideen – started looking at the US policy change as a betrayal and took arms against it. They thought that they had not only defeated the mighty USSR but also caused its disintegration. In this haughtiness, they thought that fighting and defeating India in a similar way would not be a problem for them. However, the result of that is now very clear.”
Another aspect of the game is that today a number of countries including the US, China and Saudi Arabia are playing with the Pakistani people’s desire to ensure their basic political, economic, social rights and judicial independence in order to promote their own economic, political and world agendas.
“I can say that it was the expanding nature of capital that despite coming face to face on a number of occasions, especially after banned Lashkar-i-Tayyaba attacked the Indian parliament in 2004, India and Pakistan avoided war. Later, both the countries opened Line of Control (LoC) at some selected points, leading to opening of a bus service between them after over half a century. Many delegations are visiting each other’s countries and foreign firms especially from the US are opening their outlets in India and Pakistan. However, to extend the trade to all the three parts of Kashmir – the valley, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan – is not acceptable to some elements who want the areas remain strife stricken. Inside Pakistan elements like Lashkar Tayyaba and Jihad Council are the continuation of such an international agenda.”
Answering a question about Kashmir, he said if we look at the issue in the perspective of its constitutional and legal points, it becomes clear that it is an issue between the people of Kashmir and the government of India, while Pakistan by virtue of its being a neighbor has become a self-appointed advocate of the issue. He said despite making tall claims on the United Nations resolutions on Kashmir, Pakistan has failed to implement the resolutions of the UN Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP) including the ceasefire agreement to resolve the issue.
According to the resolutions, he added, Pakistan was to withdraw its troops and civilian officials from Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan and hand over local administration to the people of the region. While recognizing Srinagar as a representative government, India was allowed to keep a bulk (more than half) of its troops in the state to maintain law and order. Ironically, till 1953 Pakistan kept on denying the fact that it had deployed troops in the areas.
The ice was broken when a UN team arrived in Karachi to check the situation on the ground and was told by Pakistan that withdrawal of troops from the region was not possible and that it should be given more time to do so. However, Pakistan could not fulfil its promise made with the international community and the people of Gilgit-Baltistan even after the passage of over 60 years, putting all the blame for non-implementation of the UN resolutions on India.
As far as Indian troops’ presence in the valley is concerned, if they were there to kill the people no Kashmiri Muslim could have been alive after 61 years. The war there has been started by the agents of the upper class of Pakistan and the extremists and those elements who use religion as a weapon are responsible for the destruction. This is the reason that Indian troops who were until recently confined to their barracks have now started intruding houses.
The so-called political leaders of Kashmir are also responsible for the mess. Due to the particular geographical, political, economic and religious characteristics of Kashmir no group or political entity can achieve anything by fighting another group.
On the other hand, the two million people of Gilgit-Baltistan even today remain deprived of their basic constitutional, political, economic and human rights. The officials of the Kashmir and Northern Areas ministry and the so-called legislative assembly treat the people like slaves. The government of Azad Kashmir and its departments are also powerless and are at the mercy of the Kashmir division, where even a lowly section officer calls the shots.
If we accept that Pakistan supports the Kashmiris’ right to self-determination then why it has denied the same rights to the people of Gilgit-Baltistan for the last over six decades. The general secretary of the party’s Belgium chapter, Jameel Maqsood was also present on the occasion.

Srinagar as a representative government, India was allowed to keep a bulk (more than half) of its troops in the state to maintain law and order. Ironically, till 1953 Pakistan kept on denying the fact that it had deployed troops in the areas.
The ice was broken when a UN team arrived in Karachi to check the situation on the ground and was told by Pakistan that withdrawal of troops from the region was not possible and that it should be given more time to do so. However, Pakistan could not fulfil its promise made with the international community and the people of Gilgit-Baltistan even after the passage of over 60 years, putting all the blame for non-implementation of the UN resolutions on India.
As far as Indian troops’ presence in the valley is concerned, if they were there to kill the people no Kashmiri Muslim could have been alive after 61 years. The war there has been started by the agents of the upper class of Pakistan and the extremists and those elements who use religion as a weapon are responsible for the destruction. This is the reason that Indian troops who were until recently confined to their barracks have now started intruding houses.
The so-called political leaders of Kashmir are also responsible for the mess. Due to the particular geographical, political, economic and religious characteristics of Kashmir no group or political entity can achieve anything by fighting another group.
On the other hand, the two million people of Gilgit-Baltistan even today remain deprived of their basic constitutional, political, economic and human rights. The officials of the Kashmir and Northern Areas ministry and the so-called legislative assembly treat the people like slaves. The government of Azad Kashmir and its departments are also powerless and are at the mercy of the Kashmir division, where even a lowly section officer calls the shots.
If we accept that Pakistan supports the Kashmiris’ right to self-determination then why it has denied the same rights to the people of Gilgit-Baltistan for the last over six decades. The general secretary of the party’s Belgium chapter, Jameel Maqsood was also present on the occasion.

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