An Observation on Uri – India, Pakistan, and Kashmir

Ahmad Zaboor, a Political Science lecturer from Kashmir writes about the tug of war between India and Pakistan, and what ramifications Uri might have for the Kashmiris. 

Verbalizing the powder keg situation unfolding in Kashmir is a dicey job, given the continuing brutal and backbreaking curfew, coupled with increasing military footprints in Kashmir to stifle the anti-establishment voice, the recurrent trammeling of rights, macabre  killings of youth. For more than two months our lives have been captured in the concrete of our homes. Within the two months, more than eighty people have been killed, thirteen thousand maimed, some for whole life and some others who would struggle for years to come.

Picture Source – Al Jazeera

We were inching towards the time when the veil on the long laundry list of misdeeds committed by the Indian State in Kashmir was to be lifted, and then the attack on the military camp happened. There is a famous age old maxim that when buffaloes fight, crops suffer. Isn’t it apt to characterize the rowdy behavior of India and Pakistan over the Kashmir dispute, with Kashmiri people being fed with bullets and pellets in between? Now both Countries would trade off the accusations with one interested in land and other in people as well as land. Pakistan harping on the single theme that Kashmir problem engenders from India’s denial of justice to Kashmir people and denying them to be part of Pakistan, while integral part discourse is embedded in the narrative of Indian on Kashmir.

The relationship between the two Countries is still influenced by Westphalian issues, the concerns which are boiling in the hot headed minds of chief executives of both states would be, the other is violating, trespassing violently the Westphalian norms by its behavior, like the terrorism, subvention, propaganda etc. These are the issues that have dominated the Kashmir narrative since the uprising began. So far the approach of India regarding the uprising can be verbalized in poetic line, Approach my heart through stomach; Shower the oodles and buy my conscience.

Notwithstanding the fact the hinduvta forces take oath before a map depicting almost whole of south Asia, or else what is called Akhand Bharat, is the reflection of streak of imperial proclivities with in the sangh. But it is herculean task and can’t be choreographed easily; to achieve it would require prodigious economic wherewithal and military firepower. But there are certain intuitive and structural inhibitions as well; that might act as drag on the machinations. Pakistan in alliance with China is acting as a drag on the rise of India, how to overcome it, the answer to this well thought out idea is, balkanization model. Support the enemies of enemy, separatist groups in Pakistan like Baluchistan where people are up with arms in hand against the state itself. Provide citizenship to some the banished leaders, run the news channel for them to carry on the vitriolic propaganda. Precipitate the conditions for civil war, give a push to balkanize the Pakistan. The breakaway State would be pro-India.

As India is joining the bandwagon strategy while inching towards U.S.A, it would start to behave like Imperial hegemon, use the camouflage of human rights narrative to secure ulterior interests.The first anecdote about such a policy came from Modi while speaking from the rampart of Red fort on 15th august 2016, by lending support to Baluch people struggling against Pakistan while the narrative over the misdeeds by Indian military machine was growing. Indian State has started to behave like a hegemon, by denying the human rights to the people in Kashmir but supporting them elsewhere. What is at the base of Baluch movement in Pakistan is purely self-determination, the same being denied to its own people.  With red corridor sprawling over two hundred eighteen districts of India, where naxalites are ruling the roost, almost all of north east and whole of Jammu and Kashmir under military boots, with full immunity to kill, its own track record regarding the human rights is worst. While India would defend itself in UN by asserting that human rights violation in Jammu and Kashmir is internal matter of India, with Pakistan having no locus standi, to poke its nose in the affairs of India while lending the support to people in Baluchistan, a hinduvta messiah of Muslims? Stephen Cohen, in his book shooting for Century writes that in 1997, I.Q Gujral, the then Indian prime minister unilaterally shut down India’s covert operations in Pakistan. But this policy has become more pronounced now.

BJP president Amit Shah commenting on the attack on military camp in uri, said the fight against the terrorism has entered a decisive phase, with Modi government moving on the right track to ensure that sacrifices of soldiers does not go waste. While Arun jaitley, asserted that steps are being taken to isolate the Pakistan internationally. Ram Madhaw, the BJP’s point man on Kashmir saying the days of strategic restraint are over. What it points to is that a limited war under the nuclear umbrella is possibility. The running theme of all the BJP top leaders was revenge would be sought, how, when and where for that we have to wait.

Source - Kashmir Watch
Source – Kashmir Watch

The uri attack is going to have certain ramifications for Indo -Pakistan relations as well as for the Kashmir uprising. The question that engenders here is how such attack would impact the uprising in Kashmir. Given the fact that soldiers killed belong to different states of India,the opinion against Kashmiri would be mobilized, as two of the soldiers are from Jammu it would strain the fragile communal atmosphere in Jammu, there is possibility that the event would precipitate anti-kashmiri and anti- Pakistani protests. The overall spinoff of such attack would be strengthening of militaristic approach in quelling the anti-India protests. If past is any guide, the vengeance of attacks on military forces by militants, have been sought on innocent Kashmiri people. Would that happen or not only time would tell.

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