The Kashmir Problem Essay (600 Words)
“The Kashmir problem is the result of our past follies like our other national issues which can be poverty, illiteracy and inequality.”
The Kashmir problem continues to exist with all its tragic possibilities. India still holds the valley and major parts of Kashmir at gunpoint against the will of the Kashmiries. Muslim rulers had governed Kashmir since the 14th century. Ranjit Singh conquered it in 1819 from the Afghan rulers. The British conquered it in 1846, but later they sold it to Gulab Singh for only 75 lac rupees.
India sent her forces to Kashmir in 1947 to occupy it against the will of the people who desired to join Pakistan. Pakistan readily reacted and joined the freedom fighters (the “mujahideen”) in their fight against the Indian forces. In 1948, India had to approach the United Nation’s Organization for a cease-fire (bringing the fighting to an end). Both Pakistan and India stopped fighting on the condition that there would be a free plebiscite (direct voting by the people) in Kashmir. The choice of joining India or Pakistan was, thus, left to the people of Kashmir.
India continued to refuse to withdraw her armed forces, while Pakistan agreed to do so, for the holding of free and impartial (neutral) plebiscite in Kashmir under the UN. This refusal. of India and the cruelties of the Indian forces in Kashmir caused two more wars between Pakistan and India, that is, in 1965 and 1971.
In 1999, the freedom fighters (the “mujahideen”) took control of the Kargil heights across the Line of Control (the LoC) to stop Indian supplies to its Laddakh and Siachen forces. This could have been the start of a broader war between India and Pakistan. But the possibility of atomic war between the two countries and the resultant total or massive destruction made · Pakistan agree to ask the “mujahideen” to stop fighting and to withdraw from across the LOC.
The problem of Kashmir has caused a very dangerous and suicidal arms race between India and Pakistan. It has also caused a tremendous increase in the armed forces. Both the countries have nuclear bombs, which they can use in case of a war. So neither of the countries will start a large-scale war against the other. However, it is a fact that Kashmir cannot be won without a war or holy war (“jehad”). But this war cannot be started in the face of nuclear weapons. The situation, thus, looks unfavorable to Pakistan.
The test of time or history is perhaps the best to judge the positions of two countries with regard to their disputes or quarrels. Time has shown or proved India to be a violator of agreements. She violated or acted against the UN resolutions (or decisions) of 1949 for the plebiscite in Kashmir, against the Tashkent agreement of 1966 for a solution of the Kashmir problem through talks (negotiations) and against the Simla Agreement of 1972 that again sanctioned talks between the two countries. Again, in 1998, under the Lahore Declaration, the two countries agreed to resolve the Kashmir dispute through mutual talks (between the two countries). The Kargil battle was, in fact, the result of India’s refusal to solve the Kashmir problem through mutual talks. Now India is trying (attempting) to have the LoC (Line of Control) recognized by the world as the international border between the two countries.
The Kashmir Problem Essay (400 Words)
The Kashmir issue has hung fire for more than half a century. Both the countries had agreed with the UN that the Kashmiri people would join Pakistan or India in a plebiscite (the voting of all qualified citizens).
Thirdly, the unresolved Kashmir problem will continue to embitter the relations of Pakistan and India and force them to keep huge armies. The people of the two countries cannot enjoy the facilities of modern life and cannot advance properly in education, science, and technology because of their military spending. Besides this, the two countries cannot move ahead together in business, culture, and tourism. On top of it all, they cannot attend to the diseases and ills of their political, economic and social systems. The recent efforts of their leaders at friendship cannot be truly successful in the presence of the Kashmir problem.
Fourthly, the constant friction between Pakistan and India over the Kashmir issue gives a chance to the big powers to take advantage of the explosive situation. They sell expensive weapons to the two countries to promote their own business. Then they play one country off against another according to their own choice and will. This leaves the two countries at the mercy of the big powers, especially … when they have to get aid or arms from them. The Kargil settlement points to this very fact.
The main solutions to the Kashmir problem are known to us. Firstly, Pakistan and India can accept the present Line of Control and decide to partition Jammu and Kashmir. They may then annex (join) the disputed areas already with them to their territories. Secondly, the Kashmiris can decide, through independent voting, which country they will join. Thirdly, some sort of autonomy (self-control) may be granted to parts of Jammu and Kashmir with Pakistan and India guarding and dealing with the autonomous units. Fourthly, through an international agency like the UN, Kashmir can decide to become an independent country itself.
Now, most of the Kashmiri people are Muslims, having strong historical bonds with Pakistan. They want to join Pakistan from the heart. Then, all the main rivers of Pakistan flow out of Kashmir into Pakistan, and the mountainous ranges in the north are our natural borders between the Central-Asian states and China. Thus, historically, geographically, culturally and commercially Kashmir and Pakistan are a continuity.
Let the world powers side with the Kashmiris as all democratic forces are with them. Above all, let all Muslims decide to help them actively to ensure their success in their struggle against India. This struggle now symbolizes (stands for) a fight against aggression, cruelty, injustice, and brutality.