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Old Thursday, March 19, 2020
Nabeelawan Nabeelawan is offline
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Default kashmir essay 2020

Please seniors evaluate it as its my first effort
History of dispute
Indo-Pak stances
UN resolutions
Three wars over Kashmir
Recent developments
Killing of Burhan Wani
Abrogation of Article 370
India's refusal to multiateralise the issue
Possible scenarios and settlement of issue in future
A proactive diplomacy
Use of multilateral forums eg SCO and SAARC to pressurize India
A robust stance for plebiscite in Kashmir
Strong economic and military relations with UNSC members
Implementation of UN resolutions
A strident OIC
In-house stability
Risk of nuclear war

Pakistan and Kashmir Dispute: History and future

After the partition of India by Britishers in 1947, the region was left out with many territorial disputes. Since then, Kashmir, an area with important geo-strategic location and landscape, has been the bone of contention between Pakistan and India. Both countries have fought three wars over the disputed territory of Kashmir and, at present, both are all but on the brink of a nuclear clash. The state of Pakistan-----having religious, cultural and ethnic cohesion with Kashmiris-----is willing to implement the UN resolutions for the legitimate rights of people of Kashmir. Contrarily, India has always obfuscated the dispute with its rhetoric of terrorism; and has continuously undermined the importance of UN resolutions and global bodies to put and end to the ongoing imbroglio. It has succumbed the Kashmiri voices with its brutal military campaign, and, is continuously taking contentious measures to disenfranchise Kashmiris. Pakistan has always supported plebiscite under UN resolutions; despite its economical and geo-political constraints. Although, the Kashmir dispute is scabrous and a hard nut to crack-----and current geopolitical trends are making it obscure-----but, a proactive diplomacy; a strident voice for plebiscite; an economically strong Pakistan; a vocal OIC and a consistent Kashmir policy irrespective to the ruling government, can cause India to throw in the towel; and can settle-out the dispute.
The dispute has its origin in a controversial decision by Maharaja of Kashmir to align the territory of Kashmir-----against the will of people----- with India. Due to its Muslim majority, Pakistan considered it as a violation of the partition plan, and, started a military campaign against illegal occupation by India in 1948. With the assistance of Pashtuns, the Pakistani military took control over parts of Kashmir.
After the war, India took the dispute to UN; and was left out bewildered when UN passed resolutions, urging demilitarization and plebiscite in the territory. After setting up United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP), the UN security council passed resolution 47 on 21 April, 1948. Both India and Pakistan were asked to reduce their forces in Kashmir; thus, created a pathway for ceasefire and plebiscite. The Security Council Resolution 47 formulated UNCIP; and India and Pakistan signed Karachi agreement in March 1951. After the termination of UNCIP, Security Council passed Resolution 91 and established “United Nations Military Observer Group” to report ceasefire violations.
After realizing the situation, India reneged from opting UN resolutions; and started a military campaign along the Redcliff Line in 1965. In jittery, it faced substantial military and economic losses. The 17 days war was concluded with the meditation of USSR; and both countries signed “Tashkent Declaration” to restore peace. Then, after the war of 1971, both countries signed “Shimla Agreement” in 1972 to define Line of Control in Kashmir. Amidst zenith of cold war and a race for assembling nuclear armament, both countries used diplomatic channels to snub each other; until, in 1999, they again faced each other at treacherous mountains of Kargil. Pakistan took control over important check posts in Indian-held region; but had to retract amidst growing international pressure.
With the passage of time, Indian atrocities continued in the held Kashmir; and, it exacerbated the situation through its increased military engagement. The preamble to the Indian constitution describes India as a “Sovereign Socialist Democratic Republic”. Article 25 (1) of the Indian constitution guarantees to all citizens of India right to freedom of religion these words. But since the BJP government formed in 2014 carnage of Muslims increased in India. Also, obsessed with the growing influence of freedom fighters, India adopted the policy of lock-down, and excruciated freedom fighters several times. On 8 July 2016, Burhan wani-------a renowned freedom fighter----was martyred by Indian forces. After this incident, people of Kashmir backlashed and a kind of renaissance was witnessed in freedom movement and put India under the clouds of growing extremism.
Currently, the extremist ruling dispensation of BJP is taking some outlandish measures against the clock to detain people of Kashmir; causing the situation to deteriorate further, and, is undermining the peace in South Asia. Adding insult to the injury, India has abrogated “Article 370” of its constitution; it made the special status of an autonomous state of Jammu and Kashmir null and void. Pakistan is rejuvenating its efforts in the current scenario; but, due to Indian influence in the regional and somehow global politics and Pakistan’s economical and geopolitical constraints, it has not witnessed a paradigm shift in efforts of Muslim and global community to settle-out the dispute. But as there are no overnight successes in global diplomacy and interactable disputes take time and effort to resolve; Pakistan can take the ball in its court with balanced strategic and diplomatic approaches.
In globalized world------where unilateralism has all but died-----no country can solve lingered disputed on its own. Pakistan should reconsider its approach to Kashmir and should opt a robust and proactive diplomacy, which can bring the issue to limelight in a more influential way.
“Diplomacy is a disguised war, in which states seek to gain by barter and intrigue, by the cleverness of arts, the objectives which they would have to gain more clumsily by means of war”
Pakistan can put more weight on its stance by highlighting its efforts in resolving Afghan issue and bringing stack holders in Afghanistan on negotiation table. It can urge the global community about the importance of talks; to which India is showing reluctance. So, putting India under pressure in this way can be beneficial. India is continuously rejecting a third-party meditation; Pakistan can diplomatically barter US in context of support in Afghanistan. Hence, US can snub India to call-off its unilateral acts in Kashmir. By converting its geo-strategic importance into and asset rather than a liability, -----under CPEC---- Pakistan can widen its diplomatic domain and buttress the strategic leverage by bringing more countries under the umbrella of CPEC.
Other than UN, both Pakistan and India are members of various multilateral forums-----like SCO and SAARC----which can prove a platform for fruitful talks. It should continuously raise the Kashmir issue at these forums; with the assistance of China, should formulate a “Special Group on Kashmir” under SCO. Amidst binding agreements under these forums, India can reconsider its unilateral approach and rethink about its stance on Kashmir. The moribund status of SAARC has become a dilemma for Pakistan. India’s quest for hegemon status in region has always undermined the effectiveness of SAARC. Reviving the forum, would be an uphill task and it can only be done with strong bilateral and economic ties with all members of SAARC.
UN resolutions on Kashmir-----though not opted yet-------are still the only way to settle out Kashmir Issue. Till now, the role of UN is highly condemnable in this regard; it has not been succeeded to implement its own resolutions for more than 70 years. Not only in Kashmir, but globally, the UN hens are known to cluck but lay only sterile eggs.
“The UN Security Council has outdone Rip Van Winkle. He slept for 20 years and woke to find a changed world. The UNSC slumbered for 70 years and find the embers of Jammu and Kashmir still smoldering.
Due to their trade relations and defense pacts with India, most of the Security Council members are reluctant to snub India for its human rights violations and unilateral actions in Kashmir. Pakistan-----by using all UN forums------can recall and urge UN to stand by its pledges which it had made with people of Kashmir. Consistent and persistent efforts in UN can pave the way for plebiscite in Kashmir. The state should indulge the UNCHR to view and contemplate the situation in Kashmir; thus, exposing Indian atrocities in the disputed territory. Pakistan can ask member states to allocate a special envoy for Kashmir; it can send diplomats and other UN officials to Pakistani administrated Kashmir, for their interaction with Kashmiri people and briefing them about ceasefire violations along Line of Control. Hence making its voice more strident for plebiscite.
In current world order, economic relations with other states can draw their diplomatic, military and economic support in one’s favor. Pakistan------following its policy for china------should reshape its relation with major powers from trade and economic perspective, rather than considering them from security lens only. Two-way trade between Pakistan and USA is $6.6 billion; while that of India is $142 billion. Similarly, with Russia, we are also lacking behind India. Building robust economic ties-in terms of bilateral trade with UNSC members will help Pakistan to seek leverage over India.
The Kashmir brawl has its roots in religious and ethnic affiliation. Muslim diaspora------ spreaded over 57 countries, and have multilateral platforms, like OIC------has failed to play a substantial role in voice over Indian brutalities in Kashmir. A more globalized world with nationalist and populist regimes, have scumbled the multilateralism among Muslim nations; debilitating the OIC to have fewer vocal voices over Kashmir. How can OIC raise its voice over Indian brutalities in Kashmir, when its members and Petro-fueled sheikhdoms are bound in robust economic ties with India, and, they are facing the wrath of sectarian violence in the Muslim world? Pakistan------ being the only nuclear state in Muslim world--------- should put efforts to rejuvenate OIC and to make it more authoritative and influential in global mayhem. it can only be possible if, Pakistan can mediate for the ongoing confrontation between Muslim giants i.e. Saudi Arabia and Iran. Pakistan, while convincing Iran and Saudi Arabia------- along with strident voices of turkey and Malaysia------ should make the Kashmir group of OIC more effective. OIC should reconsider its economic ties with India and should compel it to sough out the historic dispute with Pakistan and to give Kashmir------- their sovereign right
According to ministry of overseas Pakistani, around 8.8 million Pakistani live abroad they constitute a platform to raise the Kashmir in-front of global community. The concerned ministry should organize walks, seminars and peaceful protest across the globe to seek leverage over Kashmir issue. An overseas Kashmir commission should be formulated to highlight the brutalities and will of people for freedom.
India is playing its cards by imprinting terrorist and extremist posture of Pakistan to the western world. In large, it is a part of its hybrid warfare----an emerging tool across the globe-----to counter Pakistan’s stance on Kashmir. Pakistan, on the other hand, is lacking behind India in gaining its diplomatic leverage in western world; emerging Islamophobic trends have undermined Pakistan’s efforts to put its strong case in front of world. So, there is a dire need to fabricate counter measures to tackle India’s propaganda of terrorism. Pakistan should not let its soil to be used against any country and it should not be a shelter for any insurgent group banned by UN. So far, ISPR has done a great job in countering Indi’s terrorism and war rhetoric; more political and media forums should be formulated to counter India’s verbal rhetoric.
While discussing the possible scenarios to settle-out the dispute, we should also be aware off a gloomier picture about the future of dispute. Pakistan and India----being the nuclear states------can turn the conventional war into a nuclear clash amidst growing tensions in Kashmir. Having conventional superiority, India has left Pakistan out, only with nuclear war to deter its growing arms race. A nuclear war between South Asian neighbors can prove to be a total debacle for entire world. In a nutshell, the unilateral actions of India-----if not hindered-----and detainment of Kashmiris for a long time could lead to a disastrous war.
To conclude we can say that, being a historic and tortuous dispute, Kashmir is perhaps one of the most important and intention seeking issue around the world. If left unresolved, the region will be poised on the brink of a disastrous war. India has lost in Kashmir politically and emotionally. Due to Hindutva and dictatorial politics, democracy is fading away in so-called world’s largest democracy. A non-secular India can also be a yok around US’ neck. Using this as a leverage, Pakistan should take sound and proactive measures to assure the sensitivity of the dispute to rest of the world. It should use all multilateral forums to defeat India in its immoral and unethical stance and should put a strong case for plebiscite in front of the world. An internally stable and economically strong Pakistan can pave the way for sound global diplomacy. So, by setting-out domestic disputes, and by sustaining economic stability, Pakistan can cause India to lose heart in this dispute. To seek support of Muslim giants, Pakistan should rethink that whether religious affinity is enough to gain diplomatic support in the globalized world or it needs to rebuild its relations with Muslim world in a more economical way. Only a prosperous and stable Pakistan can counter India to settle-out the historical dispute.
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