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Friday, 14 August 2009

Pro plebiscite speakers hold Kashmir round table in Srinagar

Abrar Lone (Rising Kashmir)
Srinagar, August 13: India seized Kashmir under a grand conspiracy and the accession with India was not permanent which is what Kashmiris are contending, pro freedom leaders, social activists, advocates and senior citizens concluded Thursday in a seminar on “Self Determination—Truth, Challenges and Role of Kashmiris”.

“It was a conspiracy against the Kashmiri nation. What India calls an accession is in fact a deceit played against Kashmiris by Jawaharlal Nehru,” Convener of Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) Amanullah Khan Group, S M Afzal said during his speech.

Afzal said there was nothing like accession and the instrument of accession produced was a fake paper meant to take control of the State.
The seminar started with a discussion followed by question answer session with the panel that included civil society activist, Dr Mubarak, veteran social activist Anwar Ashai, Advocate Bashir Ahmad Bhat, Mirvaiz South Kashmir, Qazi Yasir, Educationist Habibullah Wani, Islamic Students League (ISL) Chairman Shakeel Ahmad Bakshi, Vice President JKCCS Zahir-ud-din, Retired Prof Nazir Ahmad Koul, Muslim Khawateen Markaz Chairperson, Advocate Zamrooda Habib, trade union member M A Raja, Advocate Mohammad Amin and social activist Dr Zaffar.
On August 13 which is being observed as Kashmiri Peoples Right of Self-determination Day, Afzal said that Kashmiris are yet to be given the choice of which country they want to accede “and on this day we want to send across the world this message that we are serious in our demands.”
“More than 62 years have passed and we are still pleading for a resolution,” he said.

Reminding that Kashmir accession to India was a temporary decision since the then PM of India Jawaharlal Nehru promised self determination to Kashmiris, Advocate Amin said, “The only solution is what we were promised six decades back. Kashmiris have the right to be asked about their opinion whether to choose India or Pakistan.”
Linking peace to right to self determination, he said, all the princely states were given right to self determination but out of them only Jammu and Kashmir was unfortunate.
The panel members said that the then Maharaja was reluctant to accede to any of the two nations and on October 27, 1947 army landed at the Srinagar Airport.
“And soon after the landing they started showing what they actually came for,” they said.

Muslim Khawateen Markaz leader, Zamrooda Habib said that “our struggle is based on the right to self determination.”
“We have to remind India about the promise it made to us. And according to the United Nations, we can choose anything between India and Pakistan,” she added.
Other options which Kashmiris can opt for were also debated and discussed in the seminar.
Qazi Yasir, another activist said that free will is misunderstood to most Kashmiris. “It is not only India or Pakistan. It can be a free Kashmir as well,” the activist said.
Meanwhile eminent journalist, Zahir-u-din disagreed to observe August 13 as ‘Kashmir day’ saying that , poet of the east, Allama Iqbal had insisted to observe August 14 as the ‘Kashmir day’.
He further said, “Kashmiris can forgive India for 10,000 enforced disappearances, 12000 custodial killings and over one lakh killings but they will never forgive her for 7000 rapes. The truth is that India is an aggressor and it has to vacate our state.”
The seminar also saw some pro-freedom leaders’ bashing by the angry participants.
Among the audience, a local resident, Yasin Shah argued that the repression will not end until pro freedom leaders adopt themselves to the living standards of a common Kashmiri. “We are suffering because we had materialistic leadership,” he said.
Another speaker said that India has applied “confusion therapy” on Kashmiris by propagating multiple options of conflict resolution.
“Just three decades back Kashmiris had single opinion of right to self determination to fight over. But now multiple opinions have been deliberately created,” he said.
“Even last year,” Mohammad Amin, a trade union activist said, “our leaders presented almost 55 different resolutions at the UN office in Sonawar. Our main issue is withdrawal of troops.”
He suggested that a resolution should be planned by taking everybody into consideration, which should form the basis of freedom struggle.
“Otherwise it will take 100 years to achieve independence,” he added.
The panelists said that independent Kashmir is possible and Kashmiris will force out India from the State.
“By hook or crook India has to get out from here,” pro-freedom activist Bashir Ahmad Bhat said.


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