On March 13, China blocked India’s attempts to get erstwhile Jaish-e Mohammad Chief, Masud Azhar, declared a global terrorist by the UN. India has expressed disappointment at the Chinese move as it already had enlisted the support of the US, France and UK.Indian disappointment does not come as a surprise for it was striving for the past many years to get Azhar declared an international terrorist. However, it forgot that, much to its displeasure, Kashmir now appears on the international agenda and that it had been dragging Azhar on an issue rooted in the Kashmir dispute. If India cannot discuss Kashmir at the UN, an issue that it took to this body, it should not be allowed to cherry-pick even though member states may not say so out of politeness.That India does not have a Kashmir policy is becoming apparent with each move it takes to malign or isolate Pakistan at the international forums. Post-Pulwama scenario is gradually unfolding the structural flaws in the Indian policy on Kashmir. Whatever deceptive tactics India may have to make the world believe that Kashmir was an “integral” part of India, the people of Kashmir have always torn apart this Indian myth of “integral-ness” in one way or the other. Since 1989, Kashmiris demonstration of their revulsion to the Indian occupation is a daily occurrence. India has tried all tactics to lure Kashmiris to become Indians but none have worked till date.Instead, India has been blaming Pakistan of instigating the Kashmiris, an accusation which only insults the wisdom of the Kashmiris as an independent thinking people. By this logic, India, claiming to be far ahead in democracy and resources than Pakistan, should have long attracted Kashmiris to its folds. No doubt, Pulwama was a tragic incident, which was rightly condemned by the international community. However, before the dust at the suicide site could settle, Indian officials and media launched a blitzkrieg against Pakistan to prove it guilty of all their woes. This attack was symptomatic of the dangers ahead if remedial measures are not taken by India, including a frank and result-oriented dialogue with Pakistan and Kashmiris who are directly linked to the dispute. Indian whining against Masud Azhar with a renewed vigour was considered by the Indian policymakers as a major achievement, which despite intense lobbying at the international level, could not achieve the desired results. The moot question is that even if Masud Azhar is removed from the scene, how would it resolve the problems for India in Kashmir?Another important development which needs to be understood is that unwittingly, India is moving towards a negotiated settlement of issues with Pakistan. Its attack at Balakot and Pakistan’s response within 24 hours was enough to signal to the world that such kind of brinkmanship between the two nuclear powers cannot be allowed or accepted by the international community. Indian insistence that it is opposed to the international mediation on issues between Pakistan and India has lost logic after the tit-for-tat episode between the two countries. In the absence of dialogue since 2008, the non-state actors would be too happy to fill the vacuum while extremist elements in both the countries have found God-sent opportunity to exploit the situation to their advantage. It was not a coincidence that all major powers played an active role in diffusing the situation between India and Pakistan. Indian attempts to create a “new normal” through so-called “surgical strikes” were checkmated by Pakistan. The international community realised that Indian logic of “punishing the perpetrators” would not work in any circumstances, or it would not legitimize a “new paradigm” in the military terms. The only result, therefore, would have been a war between Pakistan and India with grave consequences. Although the debate is raging in India whether India has fallen into the trap of mediation or it allowed “facilitation” to deescalate the situation. However, one thing is clear that India was told in clear terms that it cannot be allowed to ratchet up temperatures in a nuclear environment.Second, major countries warning their citizens against travelling to India and Pakistan acted as a major deterrence in averting the war between the two countries. Such an advisory did work during the 2001-2002 military standoff between the two countries. An added factor, which averted war between Pakistan and India, was the IT sector in both the countries that warned both the governments that international companies were cancelling orders. Third, for India, the moot question is to decide whether it is serious about a final and durable solution to the Kashmir dispute. No doubt, over the decades, Indian leadership has been telling lies about the true nature of the Kashmir dispute while thinking that with the passage of time, the intensity of the dispute would get diluted and Kashmiri people would forego the option of a plebiscite. This has not happened, much to the disappointment of the Indian leadership and establishment. Now the situation has become so serious that Indian politicians cannot dare visit the occupied state except under the heavy protection of security forces. Even the pliable Kashmiri politicians acknowledge that the alienation of the Kashmiri people against India is complete. In such a scenario, Kashmiri freedom fighters would take all measures needed to embarrass India. Just blaming Pakistan would not improve the situation for India.Fourth, it is also embarrassing for India that despite all sorts of atrocities, including brutal murders, rapes, blinding of youth with pellet guns and mass disappearances, India has been unable to break the will of the Kashmiri people. The UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC)’s first ever report in June, last year, documented Indian atrocities, which were not only embarrassing for India but also called into question the claims by India as the largest democracy in the world.Fifth, being an aspirant to the permanent seat in the UN Security Council, India has been embarrassing itself during the past two decades while making its case for the exclusive club. Indian delegates have been unable to answer the questions as to how India qualifies as a permanent member when it is in gross violation of the UN Security Council resolutions regarding holding of a plebiscite in Kashmir. Sheer size cannot be the only criteria for the prestigious body when people in Kashmir are being deprived of their inalienable right to self-determination.The foregoing is not an exhaustive list of arguments which may force India to resolve the Kashmir dispute in accordance with the wishes of the Kashmiri people, but offers a glimpse of ground realities to the international audiences, especially to the major powers, to see the reason and play their rightful role in ameliorating the plight of the Kashmiri people. In doing so, they would be serving the cause of peace in a much better way then selling their merchandise and weapons to the “world’s largest democracy”.Published in Daily Times, March 15th 2019.