In his 2019 UNGA address, the then Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan had snidely remarked, “You think Kashmiris will accept a new status quo under revocation of Article 370” and went on to prognose, “I fear there will be a bloodbath.” While this may appear to be just an innocuous observation, Kashmir watchers would agree that it was a brazen instigation in disguise.
Coming in the wake of the then Pakistan Army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa’s declaration that “Pakistan army firmly stands by the Kashmiris in their just [sic] struggle to the very end; we are prepared and shall go to any extent to fulfil our obligations in this regard“ [Emphasis added], Khan’s insidious statement leaves no room for doubt that Pakistan wanted to see Kashmir Valley going up in flames.
However, to the bad luck of the cricketer turned politician, the doomsday scenario that he so confidently predicted never came to pass. And after precautionary restrictions imposed to prevent the pro-Pakistan camp in Kashmir from fomenting unrest were lifted, the situation remained calm and peaceful. This must have come as a big shock to both Khan and Gen Bajwa.
Paradoxically, the only violence that Kashmir Valley experienced after restrictions were lifted was the targeted killing of innocent migrant workers and minority community members by hitherto fore unknown groups like The Resistance Front [TRF], which is nothing but a shadow organisation of Lashkar-e-Taiba [LeT] terrorist group. This was Pakistan Army’s puerile attempt to project that new armed groups opposing Article 370 abrogation had emerged that were creating mayhem in Kashmir.
Having suffered for more than three decades due to cross border terrorism, the people of Kashmir have seen through this sinister plan and realised that Pakistan is more concerned about creating unrest and making their lives miserable solely to create an impression that normalcy continues to elude Kashmir. Thus, the fact that Pakistan is only interested in Kashmir’s real estate and the concern that it exhibits for Kashmiris is a mere farce has yet once again been exposed.
So, while Pakistan’s proxies continue their efforts to create an atmosphere through violence, the proactive actions of security forces and law enforcement agencies to simultaneously take action against the entire terrorist ecosystem has severely restricted the terrorists’ ability to do so. These efforts have yielded positive results thanks to active cooperation from the people of Kashmir Valley who are voluntarily providing information regarding terrorists, their facilitators and sympathisers to the security forces.
While those on the payroll of Pakistan Army’s notorious spy agency Inter Services Intelligence [ISI] continue to parrot Rawalpindi’s secessionist narrative, the public that once responded to All Parties Hurriyat Conference [APHC] protest calls by taking to the streets in great numbers is today much wiser. Consequently, shutdowns and protests have now become a thing of the past and locals today have no apprehensions in reiterating that they are Indians.
Even the kith and kin of many terrorists have publicly rejected the absurd Pakistan coined slogan “Kashmir banega Pakistan” [Kashmir will become part of Pakistan]. In 2021, Muzaffar Wani, the father of slain Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist and Pakistan’s poster boy Burhan Wani, hoisted the national flag at a school in J&K’s Pulwama district on Independence Day. On India’s Independence Day this year, while Bashir Ahmad, the brother of Hizbul Mujahideen [HM] terrorist Irshad Ahmad raised the Indian tricolour in J&K’s Doda district and announced “Hum Hindustani hain” [We are Indians],
Similarly, in Sopore, Rayees Mattoo, brother of active HM terrorist Javid Mattoo too waved the tricolour and his Twitter post reads “I waved the Tiranga [Tricolour] from my heart. There was no pressure from anyone”[Emphasis added] and ironically includes the quote “Saare jahaan se achha Hindustan humara, hum bulbule hain iske ye gulistan hamara” [our India is best in the world;we are its nightingales and this garden is ours] of Mohammad Iqbal, who is considered the ideological father of Pakistan.
And in what could metaphorically be called a resounding slap on Pakistan’s face, Rayees added, “The situation has changed [and] Pakistan can’t do anything…Hum Hindustani theh, hain, aur rahenge.” [We always were, are and will remain Indians].” [Emphasis added].
Just last week, social media was abuzz with a rap song titled ‘Badalta Kashmir’ [changing Kashmir] rendered by a Kashmiri duo-21 year old Rasik Ahmed Sheikh and 14 year old Humaira Jan inspired by ongoing development and improved security situation in Kashmir. The starting line of this viral song goes thus- “Na koi begunah mar raha, khoon na hai beh raha” [No innocent is being killed, there is no bloodshed] and serves as an appropriate obituary for the so called “armed struggle” being sponsored by Pakistan army in J&K!
Tailpiece: More than one and a half decade ago, APHC chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farook admitted that “We have already seen the results of our fight on the political, diplomatic and military fronts which have not achieved anything other than creating more graveyards . . . ” Five years later, HM chief Syed Salahuddin who also heads the ISI created terrorist conglomerate United Jihad Council [UJC] himself exposed Rawalpindi’s dirty game in J&K by admitting that “We are fighting Pakistan’s war in Kashmir” [Emphasis added].
So, with both the UJC chief and APHC chairman admitting that Kashmiris are being used as ‘cannon fodder’ by Rawalpindi, isn’t it obvious that Pakistan is the biggest enemy of the Kashmiri people?