CIU party of Catalonia seeking independence keen on secession from Spain looks like a reality and recently held referendum, without any political hiatus or lacuna, is an indicator that independent nation of Catalonia is round the corner. (itv.com; 26 Nov 2012) In a democratically held referendum, Catalonian nation within two years with positive resultant outcome could be the answer for expected cherished aspirations.
Basque independence movement is already there creating uneasiness threatening unitary fabric of Span’s political and geographical structure. Three decades long Basque independence struggle costing many precious lives and destruction makes situation still worse as the separatists are very much around to make their presence felt. A Northern Ireland-style handover of arms and release of prisoners offered by ETA group has not found any takers at the political helm in Madrid but still, as believed, behind the scenes dialogue is on.
Looking at the fast changing political climate, it is perceived that ´centrifugal forces´ are at work right across Europe. Scotland, Wales faced with impatient discomfort, the potential break-up of Belgium into its Dutch and French speaking halves, secessionist movements in two Italian regions of South Tyrol and Venice, and rumblings in Corsica may act as catalyst to gain momentum. However, it is argued that a common desire of the secessionist movements to be part of the European Union, thought to be a difficult scenario, might come to the rescue of the government in Madrid. The expected referendum of Scotland in 2014, widely believed, will have considerable effect on similar situations around Europe.
Whatever the reaction of Spain; the reality is that a democratic process without any sinister political motive visible, is allowed to prevail which is part of the modern day global society based on principle of justice and political freedom. It is noteworthy that no UNSC or any international political pressure is on record to impress upon the parties to thrash out a solution. People given a choice to express opinion freely, is the key to civilized behavioural aptitude to make our planet free from exploitation, mischief, oppression and tyranny.
In comparison, Kashmir a long standing issue on the agenda of United Nation Security Council with various resolutions passed is not having any effect on the "largest democracy" of the world. The simmering populace for the last sixty five years, having faced unprecedented human-right violations, thousands killed in indiscriminate firing and fake-encounters, thousands more disappeared have no clue where they are. Kashmir, unfortunately, is ruled by people who do not understand culture, faith and more importantly the language making it more difficult for suffering inhabitants even to plead for mercy.
One million strong people armed with sophisticated weapons, with a pretext to provide security, have confined people behind doors and as a policy do not allow them to come out in open to express their opinion. The so called "largest democracy" has certain reservations in allowing people to protest peacefully as otherwise that would expose the myth of peaceful Kashmir, with filled graveyards to the brim, looking for some economic benefits.
To justify, on an international level, frequent curfews, house arrests and kidnappings; youth expended in torture chambers, a divisive policy is adopted. Intelligence agencies, like RAW, IB, CBI to name the few, create situations to divide population playing with their religious sentiments either by torching religious places or pitting one sect against another to make it look like a law and order problem.
Sir Tony Baldry, the British Member of Parliament said on November 30, 2012 that "Kashmir cannot continue to rumble on unresolved year after year" an issue which is continuously on the agenda of the European Parliament which he hoped would play a great role in the settlement of the Kashmir issue. "I think this is one of those issues where having the European Union as a whole speak will have greater effect, particularly given that India aspires to join the UN Security Council, which will require the support of EU Member States," he added.
Amritpan Kaur, a leading upcoming Indian journalist, following and familiarising herself with the trail of atrocities committed on the people (Express Tribune, November 10, 2012) wrote: "The presence of Indian Army and paramilitary forces in Kashmir has been so long-lived, that it is difficult for the Kashmiri psyche to imagine a life without clusters of green camouflaged men shouldering rifles on every street corner". She continues saying "Decades of misuse of power by the armed forces has eroded the civil-military relationship to the point that it is impossible to expect that any solution to Kashmir can include the current levels of military deployment".
The largest concentration of military power and personnel on earth are equipped with draconian laws like AFSPA, TADA, NSA, and JKPSA which empower the uniformed elite to do whatever they like with impunity and any action whatsoever is unanswerable and unquestionable.
Apart from the ruling junta backed by its military might, India is home to a large number of good people who believe in human rights, political rights and the right to live peacefully as the memories of British Indian rule for two hundred years are still fresh and the sacrifices made a reminder to put an end to external intervention and subjugation.
The crafty stratagem used by Jagmohan, Arun Nehru or the mindset of the likes of Masterji Balraj Madhok of Jammu are the stories of the past and India, hopefully, is marching ahead on the path of a progressive society. In order to let the peace prevail, right wing factions, victims of nostalgia, dangerously poised to disturb harmony must be marginalised. Kashmir hopes that India joins Spain, UK and rest of the democratic world to uphold the values of a real democracy to follow the policy of tolerance and civilized behaviour. India must demonstrate to the world that it believes in freedom of expression and allows people of Kashmir the committed right of self-determination.