Rohit Kumar's Views

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The Kashmiris as stakeholder must be the principal beneficiaries of any eventful outcome. Indo-Pakistan relations are a testimony to the fact that without resolving the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir, confidence building measures and improvement of relations would prove to be fragile and short-lived.

The Indian Army Chief on his visit to India-held Kashmir said that the Indian army failed to administer a good rule and build confidence among the people, forces and the government of the occupied valley, for which a political solution would be initiated to restore normalcy and stabilise the situation.

This statement clearly shows the failure of the Indian army and their policies in Kashmir. The Indian Army Chief was criticised in many circles of Indian government. On the very next day the Indian Chief tried to balance his earlier statement by terming the on-going protest in Kashmir by anti-government factions as being fuelled by Pakistan.

It is the Indian policies in Kashmir that are a cause of concern for Pakistan. India-held Kashmir is of strategic importance in the region. The US is concerned about a quick and effective resolution of the Kashmir issue to overcome tensions in the region. The Kashmir dispute cannot be resolved unless India changes its attitude and policies. Undoubtedly, the key to the dispute lies with the Indian authorities.

If the US is sincere in resolving the India-Pakistan dispute, then it should be prepared to put concerted pressure on India as well as on other parties involved.

To change India’s attitude towards accepting any reasonable proposal with regard to the future status of Kashmir would indeed be a major challenge for the American mediators and for Pakistan.

Conclusively Pakistan and India, on their own, cannot decide the future of Kashmiris, by excluding them from any such process. It is now evident that for solving the Kashmir dispute in any durable manner, a viable solution would have to include, as a sine qua non, the full support of the Kashmiri people.

SANIA KAYANI

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