In the Indian occupied Kashmir, the lockdown by the Indian occupational forces continue without any interval or break with all shops, main markets and educational institutions continue to remain shut and public transport off the road in Kashmir valley and parts of Jammu region.
As Kashmir gets into the third month of the crisis triggered by the August 5 decision of abrogation of special status and downgrading of the Jammu and Kashmir, normal life remains paralyzed in the territory. The train that runs between Baramulla and Banihal continues to be frozen for more than nine weeks now.
Internet connectivity stands closed to the commoners and the media. As a result of communications lockdown, two months after the arrest, family of 33-year-old suffering from cancer has no idea if he is alive or getting treatment. Muhammad Ayoub Pala, 60, is unsure whether his cancer-stricken son arrested in August is dead or alive.
The occupational forces and authorities made two efforts in the past nine weeks to reopen the schools. On both occasions, the students did not come to schools. Officials admit that the students are not turning up. Students preparing for professional courses or major examinations have suffered a lot because of the lack of communication. Some of them, who are enrolled with a few coaching centres, have actually migrated to Jammu for the time being.
The life in Kashmir periphery continues to be dull. The residents of Kashmir valley are facing severe hardships due to shortage of essential commodities due to continued blockade and fast approaching winter. The opening of Jamia Masjid is considered to be the absolute parameter of normalcy, but it has not seen any Friday gathering for the past nine weeks.
In certain areas, people have been able to harvest the apple but mostly it is still on the trees in Shopian, Pulwama and parts of Kulgam. If the apple picking does not pick up quickly, it can have a serious impact on the economy of Kashmir that will last for more than a year. On the other hand, a former PDP worker, Sajad b Hussain Mantoo, was injured in firing by unknown attackers in Islamabad district. Mantoo received bullet injuries in his abdomen and thigh and was rushed to the district hospital, the police said, adding that his condition is stated to be stable.
It is high time for the international community to step in to save Kashmir and people of Kashmir by mounting pressure on India to cease ongoing massacre and repression and withdraw unilateral actions taken on August 5 in occupied Kashmir.
It is the responsibility of the international community including the United States to take notice of Indian threats of war on Azad Kashmir and Pakistan as well as the use of nuclear weapons, and play its role in preventing possible war in the region. Now the United States and the international community must not ignore Hindutva philosophy because of this so-called philosophy was designed to fan hatred besides Muslims against all other religious minorities. The hate philosophy of the Indian rulers will not only adversely affect the lives of Muslims and the followers of other religions in India but it will also affect occupied Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan and other countries of South Asia.
For a peaceful solution of Kashmir conflict, it was imperative to involve the Kashmiri people in any mediation or talks’ process or otherwise, their wishes should be kept in view. If the international community did not play its role, and keeping in view its economic and political interests, continued to appease India, a major global human tragedy like the one in the last century, could once again take place.
At present the number of refugees who have quit occupied Kashmir due to Indian repression has reached 40,000, and the youth among them wanted to cross the Line of Control to help their brethren. If India continued to perpetrate repression, it would not be possible for the government to prevent these youth and those from the liberated territory.
Author is Editor of ‘Mélange int’l Magazine’ and ‘ The Asian Telegraph’ can reached firstname.lastname@example.org