Every year, hundreds of millions of Muslims worldwide commemorate the martyrdom of Imam Husain (ra), his family and companions on the tenth day of Muharram, the day of Ashura.
That heart-wrenching tragedy occurred on the parched planes of Karbala in the year 680 CE.
Like the small band of Imam Husain’s followers that confronted the military might of the Yazidi army, today the people of Kashmir face an equally brutal oppressor and tyrant.
Just like Imam Husain (ra) stood alone more than 1500 years ago, the people of Kashmir have been virtually abandoned.
Apart from Pakistan, Iran and Turkey, the rest of the world has turned a blind eye to their plight.
Today September 7 marks the 35th day of their imprisonment in their homes while the heavily armed Indian troops go from house to house arresting Kashmiri youth, simply to disappear in the maze of India’s torture chambers.
Kashmiri girls and women face the humiliating prospect of rape at the hands of the occupation forces.
The 8 million people of Indian colonized Kashmir are cut off from the world. They have no access to Internet or television.
They cannot access food, water or even desperately needed medicines.
Grave fears have been expressed that genocide may be underway without the world knowing about it.
The Hindu fascists led by Narendra Modi have intense hatred for Muslims. They are attacking them throughout India.
Muslims have been hacked to death; their limbs and tongues cut out and in some instances even set on fire.
This information has trickled out on the Internet where people have filmed these macabre rituals on cell phones for the world to witness.
Kashmir, already the most militarized region in the world, has been flooded with additional Indian troops. India’s fascist rulers are aware that Kashmiris will not accept the permanent annexation of their state into India.
Gross human rights violations have occurred on an ongoing basis as documented in a June 2018 United Nations report. A subsequent report dated July 8, 2019 has reconfirmed the horrific crimes perpetrated by Indian occupation troops.
As many as 100,000 Kashmiris have been killed and several thousand wounded, blinded and maimed, including through torture tactics in custody
Aware of the Kashmiris' demand for the right of self-determination through a plebiscite (referendum) that India would surely lose, the occupation regime is planning to change the demography of Kashmir.
By abolishing Section 35A and Article 370 of the Indian constitution through a presidential decree on August 5, the Hindu fascist regime has opened the way for illegal Hindu settlers to flood Kashmir.
Since 1954, Article 370 had recognized the state’s special autonomous status and Section 35A had prohibited non-Kashmiris from settling in the state.
Under the United Nations Rights of Indigenous People (UNDRIP), India has an obligation to ensure decisions pertaining to the Kashmiris are made with their knowledge and consent.
This is based on the principle of Free, Prior, Informed Consent (FPIC). It recognizes Kashmiris as a sovereign Indigenous people.
Yet the self-proclaimed largest democracy does not care for legality or international law. Its illegal acts are patterned on the Nazis conduct prior to and during the Second World War.
Despite indulging in brutal tactics, the people of Kashmir have not and will not accept these moves. Kashmir is waiting to explode.
Further, there is a real risk of war between India and Pakistan, both nuclear-armed. Should nuclear weapons be used, it will not only obliterate the region but will prove catastrophic for the entire world.
While the Western world turns a blind eye to India’s egregious crimes against the Kashmiris because of economic interests, there will be nothing left if there is a nuclear exchange between India and Pakistan.
Can the world afford that?