Kashmir Compromised & Pandits Forgotten ? Pawan Durani
I would surely be recommending the autobiography of General Musharraf to everyone. And Indians in particular. Not for the reason that you would imagine that it is well written, not for the reason of its wide publicity, but for the reason that it gives an insight into the cunning and non trustworthy behavior of General Musharraf.
In his autobiography, In the Line Of Fire, General Musarraf does not mince words in criticising his seniors in army and accepts that he is not one of those who has been disciplined in his life. Apart from his own past leaders in army & Politics he makes fun of India too. The same person is being now branded world over as the only chance of settlement of “Kashmir Issue” and that has made the world leaders pressurize India in a hurry , a hurry where India is likely to compromise a lot and Kashmiri Pandits to lose almost everything.
THE KASHMIR FORMULA !
Last year General Musharraf gave an idea of Kashmir being divided into different zones and withdrawal of army from two regions in Indian Kashmir ie Baramulla & Kupwara . It need not be mentioned that these two regions happen to have the largest infiltration of terrorists and one can very well imagine the sate if India chooses to reduce its troops. However last month Musharraf gave his famous Four point formula, which shockingly was welcomed by the Indian Prime Minister Mr Manmohan Singh. However one thing which most of us have missed out is that the four point formula did not come overnight. The Formula talks of joint supervision of the seven regions . The formula was infact presented long back by KSG (Kashmir Study Group in US ) It was December 1st 1998 that the formula was presented by Kashmir Studt Group ,headed by Farooq Kathwari , and the group members are various representatives of House of Representatives and academics.The group proposed “”that a portion of the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir be reconstituted as a sovereign entity (but without an international personality) enjoying access to and from both India and Pakistan “. You may very well understand why the suggestions came first from the US and why US Govt. hails the four point formulaIn 1999 Farooq Kathwari met Dr Farooq Abdullah in Jammu and immedietly after that the National Conference demanded more autonomy and proposed the creation of the Pir Panjal region comprising the Muslim-majority Rajouri-Poonch and the Chenab valley region comprising Muslim-majority Doda district and the Muslim parts of Udhampur district, thus dividing Jammu province on religious lines. Similar proposals were made for bifurcating the Ladakh region into the Muslim-majority Kargil region and the Buddhist-majority Leh.The controversial report of the Regional Autonomy Committee (RAC), tabled in the J&K Assembly by National Confrence and now maybe in the process of being implemented, bears striking similarities with the KSG proposals. And its no matter of accident that hush hush trips are supposedly being made by Kathwari to Islamabad and New Delhi.And I would like to add that Mr Kathwari is one of the most successful Kashmiri Businessman who supports independance of Kashmir. Kathwari owns Ethan Allen , an upmarket furniture company ,which among other high profiles has White House as its customer.Farooq Kathwaris two sons had died in Afghanistan when they had joined the “Jihad”
WHAT PAKISTAN GOVT SPOKESPERSON STATES:“
Pakistan never claimed Kashmir to be integral part of Pakistan. What we said is Kashmiris should be able to decide their future. We hope they would opt for Pakistan. This is what they have been saying,”said Tasleem Aslam
WHAT MUSHARRAF HAS IN MIND FINALLY :
September 2006 ,General Musharraf while speaking in Governors house in central London ,was spelling out his vision of Pakistan and how Pakistan has progressed during last few years, he was greeted with emotionally charged slogans of Pakistan zindabad. But suddenly some of the Kashmiri invitees started shouting Kashmir Banega Pakistan to which first General Musharraf said ‘zaroor’ (certainly) in a slow voice which was heard only by those on front rows.But as the the slogans grew thicker and louder he smiled and then said ‘ naroon say bhi banega aur aqal say bhi banega‘ – Kashmir will become Pakistan through slogans and through wisdom’ suggesting subtely that his government’s Kashmir policy is based on wisdom.
INDIAS RESPONSE :1 ) Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh, said he welcomed “all new ideas with an open mind” and that it was time both countries work together for a new future. “In the last few days, many suggestions have come and I welcome all of them with an open mind. We can create an atmosphere of peace and tranquility through mutual consultations and co-exist peacefully,” he told a public meeting here. 2 ) Pranab Mukerjee , Minister Of Foreign Affairs ,India : The fact that the Lok Sabha had passed resolutions declaring the two states as an integral party of India did not make them non-negotiable, Mukherjee said .( Dec 14th 2006 )3 ) Ghulam Nabi Azad , Chief Minster J&K : Mr Azad has urged Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee to discuss opening of more cross-border points when he visits Pakistan .Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said here on Thursday that there was no problem with the President Pervez Musharraf’s idea of “joint management” of the divided state of Jammu and Kashmir.Presently Mr Azad is talking of limited joint management. WHERE DOES THAT LEAVE KASHMIRI PANDITS ?The picture on the wall is becoming clearer. One should be ready for more Musharraf proposal during Mukhejis visit to Pakistan and then a blue print of Indias compromise on Kashmir when Manmohan Singh visists Pakistan. The pressure is visible and what surprises me is that the media underplays all these events . Is Media being gagged or being maneuvered to do so ? In all this situation , the only possibility left for Kashmiri Pandits is to assert them to be the party of the dispute . Come with their strongest demands which include a separate Homeland for them. If Kashmiri Pandits still wait for the day when Kashmir will be signed off, they would have only history to look at. Time has come when the battle lines have to be drawn . With rest of Kashmiris , with the Indian Govt and with the different negotiating parties. A solution should not be possible without aspirations of Kashmiri Pandits demand for Homeland , else we would have “visitors” with free passage ,whom we once termed as “Qabaalis”.
Join Hands, Indians, if not now…. you will be the villains in history books of Kashmiri Pandits.