KASHMIR-IN SEARCH OF PEACE!
By: Tawfeeq Irshad Mir
The use of ‘war’ as a phenomenon was indeed philosophically described by Aristotle, when he said that ‘War sometimes is necessary and that men make War so that they can live in peace’. The people of Kashmir are victims of a proxy war from last 70 years and yet there seems no light at the end of the tunnel. The sayings of Aristotle, therefore, do not apply in Kashmir scenario as India and Pakistan are not fighting a war in order to live in peace but they are ready to continue the war and spend huge amount of budget on it for the petty political agendas and fomenting fear for vote-bank politics.
In the meantime they are neglecting the fact that people of Kashmir as well as their own innocent citizens are suffering from hunger, violence, financial instability, sickness and poverty. The relation between peace and stability can be best compared to the stimulus-response model.
Kashmir issue can only be solved by talks between the three parties to it. All-India, Pakistan and Kashmir- should talk in an atmosphere of accommodations and introspections and if any of these parties is left out, the issue will never be resolved. Peace by resolving the Kashmir issue is necessary for South Asia to flourish and to prevent growing violence that we witness in the wake of the turbulent ties between these neighbouring countries. We must acknowledge that some radical and fundamental elements in South Asia continue to justify their inhuman and perturbing activities in the wake of the souring Kashmir issue and if the same is resolved-once for all- they shall lose all and any sanctity that they might be enjoying at this point in time.
It’s my firm belief that entire south Asia shall suffer the consequences of violence if Kashmir isn’t resolved and if the culture of extremism and fundamentalism (be it Hindu or Muslim) isn’t checked right away. The current situation only indicates who conflict has been turned into an industry, a cow milked by all the stakeholders while masses continue to suffer.
Stability is impossible as long as there is no peace and peace, we all know, means more than just the absence of war. Peace means a life of dignity and equality as well as the choice to enjoy basic human rights without the fear of being prosecuted. Peace means the pursuit of happiness and the climate of Freedom. The international community as well as India and Pakistan have made mistakes in the past by wrapping the timely threads over Kashmir issue and concluding that Kashmir is peaceful. The decrease in violence isn’t an indication of peace at all and we know that Kashmir has, and will always, remained on the brink of violence during past several decades.
It is a tragedy that whenever Kashmir issue comes up to discussions, the international community has always trivialised the issue by saying that it was a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan while as United Nations resolution over the matter clearly say that people of Kashmir have to decide their fate under an atmosphere of absolutely ‘no intimations’ of any sorts. By the stand by the international community has, once and again, hurt the sentiments of the people here who are dejected and whose hopes are diminishing day by day. The international community and especially the European Union should feel moral responsibility to mediate on the Kashmir issue through the perspective of the oppressed Kashmir’s and assist them in settling this dispute by granting them their right of Self determination, just like they did in Bosnia, Kosovo and East-Timor.