ISSN 2330-717X

IHK: Global Numbness Is Not The Solution – OpEd

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Each year, Pakistan observes ‘Kashmir Solidary Day’ on February 5. Like the past 17 years, this year, public rallies, hand-to-hand chained protests, and seminars were held to extend the nation’s utter support with the people of Indian-held-Kashmir -bearing the chaos and instability in the territory for 73 decades. 

On January 5, 1949, the UN Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP) adopted a resolution regarding the issue of Kashmir, which suggested the democratic and impartial plebiscite to address the question of the accession of the State of Jammu and Kashmir to India or Pakistan. 

Unfortunately, despite the international community’s consent, Kashmir is still waiting for the resolution’s successful implementation. Although much scholarly work has been produced on the matter that claims the international community’s less attention, India and Pakistan’s biased reservations, and the interests of powerful global elites responsible for the IHK region’s instability, nothing cultivated for the peace in the region. 

One may opt either Pakistan or India’s position. S(he) would come up with the state’s justifications on the issue. The former claims the territory as its integral part on a religious and cultural basis, while the latter presents the agreement to accession to validate her stance. However, above all, what should have to be valued is the Kashmiris’ will.

It was more convenient for Pakistan to highlight the Kashmir issue till the revocation of article 370 by the Indian government on August 5, 2019. however, the continuous global silence, including P5, EU, and GCC, the U.S. under Trump Administration created a narrow space for the country to do so. What matters in international relations is the national interests- the critical persuader behind the international community’s opted numbness. 

The former U.S. acting assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asia expressed the state’s concern by stating, “we hope to see rapid action — the lifting of the restrictions and the release of those who have been detained…the United States is concerned by widespread detentions, including those of politicians and business leaders, and the restrictions on the residents of Jammu and Kashmir…(the United State is) willing to mediate if asked by both parties“.

The U.S. supports India because of her interest in promoting global security, stability, and economic prosperity through trade, investment, and connectivity. She also helps India counter China’s growing influence in South Asia and ensure her ally’s (India) dominance in the Asia-Pacific region to promote peace, stability, and prosperity.

Being India’s largest trading partner and the second-largest trade destination for Indian exports, the European expressed less concern over the revocation of article 370. In Kashmir, the EU MPs said: “Article 370 internal issue, stand by India in the fight against terror“.  Due to India’s diplomatic outreach and a part of GCC strategy to counter Iran (in the future), the GCC also went for tranquillity on the recent development and human right violation in Kashmir.  

Except China and few Muslim states, the world and regional organizations P5, EU and GCC are more concerned about securing national interests than the oppression on ordinary civilians in Kashmir. No doubt, the political and business elites are essential. Still, the world needs to remember that all humans are equal, as per the International Human Rights Commission’s law. Steadily and rationally, China -Pakistan’s all-weather friend, stood by Pakistan and condemned the Indian hostile move by declaring it ‘illegal and invalid‘. 

The world undermines the fragility of the Kashmir region. A minor conflict between these states could erupt a full-fledged war or lead the nuclear war, which is not beneficial for South Asia and the whole world. Although, after the revocation, former U.S. president Trump offered his mediatory role between India and Pakistan to settle the issue, India turn away by not accepting it. Contemporary, the world is incapable of understanding the region’s sensitivity, and without the end of cruelty, the heart of the world- South Asia could not be stable. Being a strategic partner, economic and trade partner of India, the U.S., EU, P5, and GCC needs to act rationally in the struggle of justice for the innocent Kashmiri.

*The author teaches at The Islamia University of Bahawalpur. 

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