THIS is with reference to the report ‘Yasin Malik sentenced to life term by Indian court’ (May 26). The lifetime imprisonment of the Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) leader in the so-called ‘terrorism funding’ case by the Indian court on fabricated charges is yet another manifestation of India’s state terrorism led by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government under Narendra Modi against Kashmiris fighting for their right to have some semblance of freedom in their lives.

India has been refusing to give the people of Jammu and Kashmir their right to self-determination through plebiscite for well over seven decades. Pakistan has many a time exposed the atrocities by the Modi-led government against the innocent Kashmiris. The extra-judicial killings, abductions, blackouts and infringement of basic human rights in the India-occupied valley are not unknown to the world community.

Many inter-nongovernmental organisations have voiced their concerns regarding this oppression and barbarity by the right-wing BJP government, which has close ideological ties with extremist, violent Hindu organisation, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

The recent decision to grant Kashmiri domiciles to Indian citizens and delimitation exercise in Jammu and Kashmir also present evidence of the demographic changes being carried in order to bury the remaining hopes of freedom for the occupied and oppressed Kashmiris.

Unfortunately, the international community’s indifference has added insult to injury for the Kashmiris. The tyrant Indian government, which is a strategic ally of the Unied States for containing China, never faced the music for its tyranny. Neither the abrogation of Kashmir’s special status in 2019, nor the human rights abuses against the Kashmiris at large have ever been condemned by Washington.

Instead, it turns a blind eye towards India’s state terrorism against the people of Jammu and Kashmir just like it does in the case of Israel against the hapless Palestinians. Be it the snatching of the mortal remains of Syed Ali Shah Geelani by the Indian occupation forces or the unjust convictions of Kashmiri leaders, the US never lived up to its lofty ideals and the self-acclaimed role of being the biggest proponent of human rights across the globe.

When it comes to atrocities inflicted upon the Palestinians and the Kashmiris, the world community looks the other way. This double standard flies in the face of sloganeering of justice and humanity. On the other hand, the unimpressive, toothless role of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has damaged the two causes just as much.

The combined economic and political strength of the Muslim states can surely be employed to change the dynamics of this grave situation in favour of the two communities. The geopolitics of today’s globalised world is shaped more by economic and political clout than by military might; therefore, the oil-rich Gulf states can play a decisive role in this regard, although it seems it is too much to ask of them, considering the stance of some Arab countries vis-à-vis the Kashmir issue.

We, the Pakistanis, not only condemn the brutal injustice dispensed by the Indian court in the case of Yasin Malik, but also demand the reversal of inhuman policies of the Indian government against the people of occupied Kashmir.

Saman Aftab
Lahore

Published in Dawn, May 28th, 2022

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