M J Akbar’s Fallacy

Kashmir Conflict is a fact and is recognized by all the stakeholders or parties to the dispute. M J Akbar, a veteran journalist and politician, in his recent lecture said that Kashmir was not a conflict of geography but of ideology. The learned man seems to be wrong through his observations because Kashmir is essentially a territorial conflict. Had this been an ideological matter, different parties would not have been part to it. Plus, this is not a specific kind of issue alone as I may as a commoner claim that Kashmir issue is an issue of ‘dignity’ or ‘identity’ for me. Narratives may differ but reality can never be suppressed. If we take Kashmir as an ideological conflict, it has no rival outside of Kashmir (ideologically) but internally, one may call it an ideological conflict. By this, I mean that Kashmiris’ claim for right to self-determination is a specific claim, or ideology, as some may call it but internally, there are different stances put forward by different groups.
Durbar-e-Akbar does not hold good either when he says that giving up Kashmir is surrendering Muslims’ rights. Succession of states as a principle of international law is subservient to the will of the people, or what is commonly known as the right to self-determination and Kashmiris have not realized the right yet. The centuries gone past were those of imperialism and warfare. Major imperialists had no rivals and therefore it was their policies that dominated mostly. Sovereignties also changed and changes in the territories demonstrated a new map of the subcontinent and the world as a whole. What I am trying to say is that the partition matter has got nothing to do with Kashmir and the question of Indian Muslims is distinct from that of Kashmiris. It is due to their will that Indian Muslims form an absolute part of India and the fact is quite undeniable.
Linking ‘Muslim’ to Kashmir does not help because Kashmir issue is not the issue of religion either. This is an issue of basic rights which every human being observes because of his being a human.
In a bid to restore peace in the territory, we resorted to so much of warfare and achieved nothing and not to deny the insaniyat ke naam hype, we served so much of inhumanity for making things humane. From time to time, Kashmiris have displayed the fact that this is not a war of religion but of enforcing basic human rights. The cry still resonates and we pledge to seek resolve to the issue and maintain peace and prosperity in the region.


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