ISLAMABAD: Azad Kashmir President Sardar Masood Khan said on Thursday that India should forgo its policy of aggression in Indian-Held Kashmir (IHK).
He said this while addressing a seminar titled Changing Global Scenario & Kashmir Dispute, which was organised by AIR University Islamabad in connection with Kashmir Solidarity Day.
Sardar Masood Khan said that India had unleashed a reign of terror and oppression in IHK. He also informed how the Indian forces under the patronage of the central government in Delhi were torturing the local population in IHK by mercilessly murdering the citizens, harassing the Hurriyat leadership, using lethal pellet guns, transforming the demography of Muslim populated areas, illegally incarcerating innocent protestors and dishonoring womenfolk.
He said that Kashmiris have been made aliens in their own homeland and India has resorted to maliciously transforming the demography by forcefully evicting local Muslims and illegally settling non-Kashmiri pundits and ex-army personnel in Azad Kashmir. In 1947, over 247,000 Kashmiris were brutally massacred by the Dogra forces and RSS goons, all under the watchful eye of the central government, he said.
The AJK president also said that India had adopted the barbaric Ajit Doval doctrine of inflicting unbearable atrocities on Kashmiris, excluding them from the political dialogue and in turn avoiding any political dialogue with Pakistan for the resolution of this matter. He affirmed that India through its coercion, economic blandishments and political maneuvers will never succeed in winning the hearts and minds of the Kashmiris nor will it be able to quash the freedom movement in IHK.
“India is propagating a false narrative of terrorism in IHK,” he said. The president while categorically denying any form of terrorism in IHK said, “The unarmed Kashmiris have been cordoned off. The only terrorism in IHK is the state terrorism of the Indian government which has deployed 700,000 armed personnel in IHK and has been given absolute immunity from prosecution under the Public Safety Act and Armed Forces Special Powers Act.”
President Masood Khan said that the global scenario has seen massive transformations over the years. The US is cutting off ties with its allies, while Europe suffers from elements of xenophobia and Islamophobia. “The Middle East is a target of civil wars and our Muslim countries are divided. In these circumstances, we need to forge unity and consensus in resolving the core issue of Kashmir which has been pending for over 70 years by re-strategising our approach,” he said. The president on the occasion said that we need to take the issue back to the international community especially to forums like the United Nations Security Council, UN Human Rights Commission and other such platforms. This effort, he said, must be taken up with renewed vigour, conviction and consistency.
He also said that by using modern means of communication, we must raise the profile of this issue and build inroads into the global civil society.
“Highlighting the importance of our strong Pak-Kashmiri diaspora community, we must also leverage their strengths in approaching the parliaments of powerful nations and help raise the voice of our Kashmiri brothers and sisters,” Sardar Masood Khan stressed. Talking about Azad Kashmir, the president said that the Azad State was the base camp for the freedom struggle.
“The AJK government has adopted a three-pronged strategy which includes accelerating the freedom struggle and support for people of IHK,” he said.
Published in Daily Times, February 9th2018.