Youm-e-Istehsal and Kashmiris’ quest for freedom

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has once again reiterated Pakistan’s continued unstinted moral, political and diplomatic support to the rightful and just cause of the freedom struggle of the Kashmiri people. In a message on the Youm-e-Istehsal-e-Kashmir, Premier noted that it is Pakistan’s abiding commitment and promise to our Kashmiri brothers and sisters that we will echo their voices, at every forum until the world takes action and urges India to end its egregious human rights violations and forcible occupation of the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK), undo all unilateral and illegal measures it has taken since August 5, 2019, and ensure necessary steps to carry out a fair and impartial plebiscite in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions.

The Kashmirs in Indian held Jammu and Kashmir, Azad territory and Pakistanis in the country and abroad observed the fourth Youm-e-Itehsal on August 5, 2023. Huge public rallies, demonstrations and commemoration sessions were held in major cities worldwide to condemn the unilateral and illegal actions taken by the Modi led BJP Hindutva regime on that day. About four years ago, New Delhi attempted to change the status of the globally recognized Jammu and Kashmir dispute by revoking constitutional provisions under article 370 and section 35 A of the Constitution of India.

Moreover, Modi regime did not limit to only legislative measures to suppress Kashmirs’ just struggle for the right to self determination but resorted to other apartheid policies including but not limited to the suspension of fundamental citizery rights, brutal use of force, concerted efforts for demographic change together with the issuance of Kashmiri domiciles to Non Kashmiri Indian citizens, bogus delimitations of electoral constituencies, and crucial changes in property rights in the occupied territory.

The Indian government has used multiple military and political measures over the past seven and a half decades to permanently dump the Kashmir dispute through bilateral adjustment with Islamabad, or any political accord with local Kashmiri leaders while keeping UN resolutions aside but failed in its plans one or other way. New Delhi has borrowed these policies and strategies of aparthisim from its long held Strategic ally Israel, that governed the occupied Palestine through these recipes in the past decades.

Currently, New Delhi intends to disenfranchise the Muslim majority in the disputed territory through its unilateral legislative,and administrative actions to change the ground situation in its favor. Thus selective delimitation of electoral constituencies, issuance of fake domiciles to millions of non-Kashmiris, and addition of hundreds of thousands of temporary residents in the voters lists and massive purchase of Kashmiri land by non Kashmiri Indian nationals are part of a well thought-out strategy to change Kashmir’s political landscape and demography. Pakistan has outrightly rejected all such unilateral and illegal steps taken by the Modi regime and specifically raised its concerns at all relevant global forums including the UN Security Council, UN Human rights bodies and others.

Meanwhile, international media and the global human rights organizations including Amnesty International, and Human Rights Watch categorically denounced Indian unlawful actions and called for immediate steps to normalize the situation in the disputed zone.

Historically, India not only violates international law, but also makes a mockery of the globally accepted norms of fundamental rights and freedoms through its barbaric and inhumane occupation of the Muslim majority region. In fact, the years-long continuous military siege, media blackout and ruthless use of force by the Indian military could not silence the voices of the brave Kashmiri people, whose just freedom struggle has further intensified by unfair dealing and inhumane treatment by the Indian authorities. Three successive generations of innocent Kashmiris have sacrificed their lives and liberties but courageously continued to defy the increasing coercion of the Indian occupation forces.

Kashmir is a persistent hurdle in normalization of relations between Pakistan and India as the two neighbors had fought four full fludge wars on this issue. Currently, Kashmir is a nuclear flashpoint and a genuine risk of nuclear clash remains all time high, because, the armies of the two nuclear armed neighbors remained in eyeball to eyeball confrontation on the LoC throughout the year.

The international community can no longer remain silent while India continues to perpetrate its oppression in forcebly occupied region. Pakistan always rendered sincere and cricual moral, diplomatic and political support to Kashmiris in their just and lawful struggle for freedom from Indian occupation. Pakistanis will continue their steadfast support for Kashmir cause until and unless our Kashmiri brethren grasp their fundamental right to self determination from the belligerent occupied regime any time in the future.