The people of Kashmir and their supporters worldwide observe October 27 as Black Day in the history of Jammu and Kashmir.
This year has been no exception.
At the time of compiling this report, thousands of people in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), the part of Kashmir with Pakistan, the people of Pakistan and supporters of the Kashmiri people’s struggle had joined rallies worldwide.
They have a simple demand: respect the right of self-determination of the people of Jammu and Kashmir as enshrined in at least 12 UN Security Council resolutions.
In order to understand how this tragic situation came about, it is important to know the events leading to India’s occupation of parts of the state of Jammu and Kashmir (about two-third).
On October 27, 1947, Indian troops landed in Srinagar, the capital of the state, against the wishes of the people.
India’s illegal occupation has continued ever since.
How did Indian troops end up in Srinagar?
In order to understand the gravity of this illegal act, it is important to go into a little bit of background history.
In 1947, the British were packing their bags to leave India to end colonial rule.
Since there were two large and distinct communities in India—Hindus and Muslims—a formula was agreed upon for partition.
Leaders of the two communities agreed that Muslim majority areas would constitute Pakistan while Hindu majority areas would become part of India.
There were also some 500 princely states that enjoyed relative autonomy under British colonial rule.
The following formula was stipulated for the following states.
Based on their population composition and geographical contiguity, they should join either Pakistan or India.
The situation of most states was straight forward.
There were three states where this became a little problematic.
The state of Jammu and Kashmir was one of them.
The ruler (called maharaja) happened to be Hindu while the state population was overwhelmingly Muslim.
Further, the state of Jammu and Kashmir was geographically, culturally and linguistically much closer to and contiguous to the newly-emerging state of Pakistan than India.
The Kashmiris naturally assumed Jammu and Kashmir would become part of Pakistan.
When the maharaja, Hari Singh, prevaricated, the people rose up in revolt.
The ruler fled the capital city Srinagar, and in an act of supreme treachery and intrigue, is believed to have sought India’s military help.
That help was made conditional on the maharaja signing an instrument of accession, albeit temporary, to India.
There is much speculation that no such instrument exists. India has not produced one to prove that it exists.
Based on this fraudulent act, Indian troops landed in Srinagar amid pledges by Indian rulers including the new governor general, Lord Mountbatten, and Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru, that once law and order was restored, a referendum would be held to determine the wishes of the people.
The people had already spoken through their uprising that had resulted in the ruler fleeing the state.
Indian occupation troops carried out a massacre of Muslims in Jammu where between 200,000 (Horace Alexander’s account in the British magazine, The Spectator, January 16, 1948) to 500,000 Muslims (as reported by the British author Ian Stephen) were killed.
More than 350,000 other Kashmiris were forced to flee Jammu in panic, arriving in Pakistan.
This was the first ethnic cleansing of the Kashmiri Muslims.
From a 62% majority in Jammu, Muslims were reduced to a minority of 31%.
Indian army genocide, aided and abetted by the Hindu terrorist outfit, the RSS, and backed by Congress party goons, led to war between India and Pakistan.
Pakistan could not sit idle while Muslims were being massacred in Jammu and Kashmir.
As Pakistani forces backed by the people of Kashmir and tribesmen from Pakistan, made headway in pushing the Indian occupation forces out, India took the matter to the UN Security Council.
After detailed discussions and consultations, both India and Pakistan agreed that a referendum should be held in Kashmir.
While it was India that took the matter to the Security Council, it was clear that its intentions were not sincere.
India merely wanted to buy time.
This is what India has done since 1948.
Instead of honoring its pledges to the people of Kashmir and the world community, today it says Kashmir is an “integral” part of India.
The overwhelming majority of Kashmiri people reject this ludicrous notion.
The Kashmiris have been protesting against India’s illegal occupation ever since.
October 27 marks another grim anniversary in their long, painful struggle for the fundamental right to determine their own future.