Before you make an attempt to go through the sentences that follow and reduce me to an anti-national piece of flesh, attempting to tamper with the unity and integrity of this nation that we belong to, let us sing in unison:
Since time (im)memorial, there has been a massive furore of unruly words, pelleted stones, and noisy guns in response to the question of Kashmir. Whether it is successive democratic governments or army regimes in Pakistan, democratically elected powers in India or even the separatist factions like Hijbul and JKLF, nobody has actually been able to find a solution to the issues in the once crown-jewel and now a sore territory in the ailing body of India: the valley of Kashmir.
Whatever may be the current role of the military, local parties, and big national players, or whatever it might have been in the past, there is one taboo question that no one dares to ask: “Why not grant Kashmir the right to self-determination?”
A very plausible argument to this could be that India, being a “Union of States”, as is stated in the preamble, is an indestructible Union of destructible states. But, let us take a look at things that we don’t like to look at. We proudly draw the nation’s map with the POK region intact within the Indian landmass without any actual authority over it. In my opinion, the only right that India, as a nation, has over the disputed tract of territory is the right to condemn the overtures of Pakistan and China in the region of dispute.
The government (or people) can definitely criticize the stone-pelting, the taking up of arms, and separatist inclination of people in the valley or even their sympathizers. But, there is a need to realize that the present situation in Kashmir is a systematic reaction to the events that have occurred in the valley so far. There is no doubt that the situation in Kashmir has been repeatedly and significantly exploited by players on the other side of the border too.
But have we not fought enough? Have enough men not been killed, enough blood not flown, enough communities not been suppressed and enough armies not been deployed without any worthy outcomes?
We need to think about the people of the valley more than we care about our ownership of the valley. Whether Kashmir stays with India or secedes to Pakistan. Whether Kashmir decides to be independent and to act as a buffer state between the two spiritually warring nations or takes the decision to accept the LOC as an international boundary. Whether Kashmir decides to allow the LOC to be porous and is administered internationally under the UN Supervision.
Let Kashmiris be the issue and Kashmir be their land.
Let Dal be revived to its old glory.
Let no more blood be flown in the name of guarding a piece of land.
Let people be guarded.
Let a better, healthier, educated and an employed Kashmiri be raised.