Letters and Editorials 47780 Views by Ameer Tarin

Donald Trump hardball on Kashmir – but India is no pushover

Seema Guha Indian ´Peace Keeping´ Force in Sri Lanka fame crosses her heart to keep people concerned abreast with the developing situation vis a vis Kashmir. In her article (December 06, 2016) Ms Guha finds US President Donald Trump as ´unpredictable´ and at the same time mentions India´s firmness to ensure that no third party could play peacemaker. Guha apprehends that Trump administration filled with former generals having an excellent rapport with Pakistani army may lead to a better US-Pakistan equation. She concludes by saying that "India is no pushover but with Trump one can never be too sure as anything can happen anytime".

President Donald Trump unlike his predecessors, many believe, may have a surprise or two to amaze the international community. It is also believed that President Trump, using a different strategy, may deal with long standing conflicts around the world differently which could be historically momentous to assure a lasting peace for the world at large. Kashmir, sitting on a volcano, needs a solution keeping in view the volatility of the political situation in the South East Asian region. The approach to the problem it seems is guided merely by economic concerns and a stress on resolving the issue through bilateral negotiations between India and Pakistan, as widely understood, is the line that suits only India.

The business and trade on international level is vitally important depending on the need of a particular country to propel the local manufacturing industry and fill the coffers as well. Human-rights, freedom of speech and concept of democracy as a whole at times are compromised with to safeguard and boost up the economy. The note attached to the human rights definition mentions "political leaders in the United States often use the expression when speaking the rights violated by other nations". Apart from mutual economic concerns, the price to pay for forcing the trade pact involved is huge.

Why is third party mediation irksome and disturbing for India? Is it fair to allow India cage millions of sufferers in Kashmir and get away with it? India may be a booming economy but a large percentage of its inhabitants go without food as demonstrated by people living in India´s capital New Delhi eating rats. Global village Space (March 28, 2017)) wrote "People hit by drought committing suicides called on prime minister Modi to save them from starvation". The money squandered away on purchasing weapons of mass destruction and development of nukes could be used to feed the starving masses and as reported 60% Indian populace having no access to toilets.

To fulfil the wistful desire of returning to nostalgia called hindutva India´s ruling fundamentalist regime has lost all norms of decency using tyranny of majority as a weapon to coerce, browbeat and dominate to force minorities into a submission. India is home to 25% Muslims, 33% persecuted Dalits (practicing Buddhists) and other minorities Christians, Sikhs and tribal population. Present Indian rulers need to understand that it is impossible to get rid of this huge percentage and the only way to keep India intact politically and geographically is by following a policy of live and let live. The visionary first prime minister of India Pandit Nehru forewarned in 1947 that the fascist group, the assassins of Gandhi, coming to power would be bad news for India.

India Today reported Amartaya Kumar Sen, a Nobel Laureate, philosopher and an economist having said that "Kashmir situation mishandled for decades by government of India reflects the biggest blot on our democracy". Sen was Referring to the CNN coverage on the brutality of policing by Indian army in Kashmir. Sen elaborating further said that it is not a law and order problem and penalising Kashmiris in a way is giving them absolutely no reason to feel close to India. "I do think for the lives and freedom of Kashmiris and their sense of pride", Sen added.

On a positive note the international community is beginning to respond favourably and is raising a slow but steady voice for the rights of Kashmiris who have seen so much of suffering and now see a ray of hope that the day is not far when Kashmir will breathe the air of freedom from oppressive occupying forces. The long list of freedom lovers is joined by Norway´s former premier Kjell Magne Bondevik stating (March 31, 2017) that Kashmir needs a political solution which lies in the implementation of UN resolutions in order to bring peace and security to South Asia.

India sees the favourable West as its victory and feels it gives India a licence to deal with uprisings in Kashmir or elsewhere in India with brute force. The causalities in Kashmir are rising sharply on daily basis and the frustrated Kashmiri population enduring the atrocities is losing patience. Indian army reports that more young people are joining militancy and fight goes on unabated. Kashmir loses its young sons and daughters and Indian army also lose its personnel. Though force used by Indian army is disproportionate to the resistance offered by Kashmiris; the resolve to fight gains momentum resulting in deaths and destruction mainly of civilian population.

"The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. " Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

The world must wake up now to save a race from slaughter and butchery.


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