The bloodshed in Kashmir is an ugly ‘routine’ that the world conscience seems to have learnt to live with. The marks of the gun palettes on innocent faces have so far not effectively wokenup the conscience of the individuals or the organisations who claim to protect the human right.The United Nations is the biggest disappointment.The UN is like a court jester, in attendance in the court of the powerful. Kashmir is ‘occupied’ by Indian forces. Even the ruler did not give it away to India in 1947. The relationship between India and Maharaja’s Kashmir was limited to certain subjects like foreign affairs and currency. India used excuses to post heavy military units and build its hegemony. The UN proposed referendum has been constantly denied. The will of the people in the occupied Kashmir is yet to be determined. The innocent populace in search of the freedom expression gets shot. There is blood of the young and old in the streets of Kashmir; generation after generation and decade after decade. UNO observes! What for? The main villain is the government of India. Indian government and the parties in power have used Kashmir as a toy to play with to win electoral support. None has shown the statesmanship of standing with truth and humanity. It was expected of the Congress, but it failed miserably. Congress was considered to be the symbol of secular Indian thought. But it failed to rise to the challenge and cowed down under the pressure of the extreme right Hindutva. It needed the rightwing vote and tried to show its commitment to them by suppressing Kashmiris and their demand for plebiscite. Each political party contesting for Indian government used suppression of Kashmiris to show their loyalty. The Kashmiris hardened their struggle and Indian political parties increased the suppression and bloodshed. Narendra Modi crossed all limits. He went further and targeted Pakistan as an ‘enemy’ because it supports the legitimate demands of the Kashmiris. Modi thought that his failed government will get support if he goes a step further and threatens Pakistan. His public statements were worse than those of a street thug. He must have thought that callous bloodshed in Kashmir combined with brow beating Pakistan will consolidate his voting strength. He must have been shocked when he ended up with a bloody nose. People of the subcontinent, in particular, can only progress in peace and with love and respect for all In the recent conflict, Modi’s government lost both militarily and diplomatically. If the sane voices, highly respected in India, are heard then it is a shame that a secular country is ruled by such a bigot with outdated ideas in the modern world. Hatred and armed oppression are a failed combination. Love and justice for humanity have much greater power. Extremists rely on the power of hate and lose, but godliness is in love and it always wins. Maybe India is ready for the emergence of a third political force with a more contemporary and broader political vision. People of the subcontinent, in particular,can only progress in peace and with love and respect for all. Pakistan has clearly extended a hand of friendship to India and taken the lead.Modi will be remembered in history if he becomes part of a peaceful solution to Kashmir. He does not realise that. But surely, he can if he has the vision and not a slave of extremist thoughts. At least he should realise that even in the Kashmir accession contract, the Maharaja of Kashmir retained most of the rights for himself and Lord Mountbatten committed that the Indian government will facilitate the determination of the will of the people. If India wants to work for peace then they have a workable option in place. A draft proposal was made in August 2004 by the then President of Pakistan General Pervez Musharraf. This proposal was being seriously considered by all the relevant parties including Kashmiris, Indians and Pakistanis. It is worth looking at it at this point. The Musharraf solution to Kashmir includes the following: demilitarization or phased withdrawal of troops, no change of borders of Kashmir. However, people of Jammu & Kashmir will be allowed to move freely across the Line of Control, self-governance without independence and a joint supervision mechanism in Jammu and Kashmir involving India, Pakistan, and Kashmir. These points were generally accepted as a good starting point. This basis was said to be worthy of consideration by Vajpayee and Kashmiris. This makes it evident that all the concerned parties and a mediator could have taken it further. The most important advantage would have been prevention of bloodshed and restoration of peace. It would have further made the state ruled by civilians instead of some ruthless military might. Clause 3 provided a saving grace to both rival claimants i.e. Pakistan and India and clause 4 was perhaps the more complicated one but a basis for better understanding between India and Pakistan. I feel Modi should study it because by bringing peace to Kashmir, and between Pakistan and India, he would win the heart of the millions of peace loving and secular Indians. But does he have the ability? It’s simple to see the consequences. Peace between India and Pakistan and resolution of Kashmir issue will ensure peace in the region. It shall open the opportunities of trade and tourism. Similarly, India has attractive tourism destinations.It would encourage international investors to set up trade and industry in the region.Particularly in view of the abundant human resource, and even natural resource, available in the subcontinent. People of the subcontinent are traditionally hospitable and interaction with tourists will help achieve better understanding. We can contribute to a better world if peace is prevalent. The ball is, in fact, in the court of the Indians. They need to develop a contemporary thinking for the betterment of South Asia. The writer is Pakistani theatre, film and television actor, scholar, public speaker, columnist, teacher and dramatist Published in Daily Times, March 12th 2019.