Why Pakistan cast its evil eye on the 'paradise on earth', Kashmir
In the name of ‘Holy War’, Pakistan-based tribesmen unleashed unheard of and unseen violence in the Valley
Once described as the ‘paradise on earth,’ Kashmir was invaded by tribal militia backed by Pakistan on October 22, 1947 and things changed forever.
An opinion piece published by Zee News takes account of various factors that led to the disruption of peace in Kashmir by Pakistan as India observes ‘Black Day’ and sheds light on various reasons which led Pakistan to unleash atrocities on Kashmiri people.
Brigadier RK Bhatia (Retd), who served in the Intelligence Corps of Indian Army, writes that Pakistan has always had its eyes on Kashmir for being a Muslim majority region. Without Kashmir, the whole origin of Pakistan would be baseless.
He writes, “For Pakistan, the merger of Kashmir remains an unfinished agenda of partition. Without including Muslim majority J&K, in its core, Pakistan considers itself incomplete as a nation which may fail or even collapse.”
Hence, Pakistan quotes ethnicity, geography and legality for Kashmir to be its part, however, the nation has some ulterior motives behind it. In fact, their own historians point out the fact. The Pakistani historian, Ishtiaq Ahmed has even called it a Hydro-Political problem of Pakistan, he writes.
Pakistan’s agenda behind grabbing Kashmir comes from the fact that Pakistan wants to ensure non-interference with river waters coming from Kashmir. Kashmir is also important to maintain dominance over Pakistan’s Punjab, Bhatia writes quoting Pakistan’s Major General Akbar Khan, who was part of the Kashmir liberation Committee and the self-proclaimed Commander-in-chief in Kashmir in 1947-48.
Khan, in his book, ‘Raiders in Kashmir’ had written, “Our own safety and welfare (read Western Punjab) demand that the state (Kashmir) should not go over to India. If Indian troops came to be stationed along Kashmir’s western border (with Pakistani Punjab), she (India) could establish its forces within a few miles of the 180-miles-long vital road and rail route between Lahore and Pindi (the entire stretch he speaks is in West Punjab).”
Khan further wrote, “From an economic point of view, the position was equally clear. Our agricultural economy (again in Punjab) was dependent particularly upon the rivers coming out of Kashmir.”
Pakistan also quoted the so-called ‘social fabric of Kashmir’ to establish its right on it. Pakistan had called its invasion of Kashmir as an attempt to unite Muslim of Kashmir with their lost brethren of Pakistan. Even this justification was fundamentally flawed.
In fact, in her book ‘Between the Great divide’, Pakistani author Anam Zakaria has given innumerable examples of traditionally secular and tolerant practices of Kashmiris, both Muslims and Hindus, Bhatia writes in his opinion piece for Zee News.
Zakaria, in her book wrote, “The degree of homogeneity was such that many Hindus and Muslims went to the extent of only consuming halal mutton instead of beef or pork to respect each other’s traditions and sensibilities.” “The Sikhs and Hindus were familiar with and able to recite the verses of the Holy Quran just as much as Muslims could read Holy Granth,” she wrote.
But Pakistan rather than accepting the truth, formed a ‘Kashmir Liberation Committee.’ It started to arouse communal passions in people of Kashmir instigating them against joining India, hence what happened on October 22, 1947 was pre planned.
“There is enough evidence to suggest that the Kashmir operation was not a spontaneous uprising by the tribesmen but a clandestine operation deliberately designed by Pakistan for annexation of the state by force. Mr Prem Shanker Jha in his book ‘Kashmir, 1947, Rival Version of History’ states that the raiders were to be the real spearhead of the Pakistan Government’s annexation plan,” Bhatia writes.
Pakistan, in the name of ‘Holy War’ promised tribesmen wealth, head and women of innocent Kashmiris irrespective of their religion, Bhatia writes. It resulted in unheard of and unseen violence in the valley, he writes further.
In this action, Pakistan officially played a huge role. “Notwithstanding Pakistan’s continuous denial of any involvement in tribesmen’s invasion into Kashmir, there are substantial pieces of evidences to prove Pakistan’s whole hearted assistance,” Bhatia writes.
Pakistan made efforts to organise Lashkars in the tribes and paid them handsomely in exchange. Around 4,000 rifles and other ammunition was stolen and distributed. Food and camps services were provided to the raiders and a secret ‘Kashmiri Fund’ was set up. These were some of the few things which were planned, he writes.
On October 22, tribal militia backed by Pakistan invaded Kashmir, raped women, killed men and children and looted their properties and hence the paradise was lost.