This Blog provides an insight on the Kashmir-issue, India and Pakistan. The articles on this Blog can be best described as thought-provoking. The articles thrive to trigger debate about the miseries enslaved Kashmiris are facing and discuss also possible solutions to this long standing conflict. It also aims to convince readers why Independent Kashmir is the best solution for all parties involved.

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Monday, August 2, 2010

Open Letter to Ban Ki-Moon

His Excellency Mr. Ban Ki-Moon
Secretary-General United Nations
New York, NY 10017
United States of America


Esteemed Sir,

I would like to draw your attention to the turbulent situation in Jammu & Kashmir. In reaction to unprovoked killings by Indian Security forces, the people in Kashmir, especially the youth have been staging demonstrations and protests for the past two months. During these peaceful demonstrations, the Indian Security forces have not abstained from using bullets to assassinate people's democratic rights. This has resulted in the fact that during the ongoing agitation part of the youth has been compelled to display their dissatisfaction and anger by stone pelting. But in response to their stone pelting the Indian Security forces have used bullets, which has resulted in the death of more than 30 people, including women and children. The use of extensive and disproportional force by the Indian Security forces has fueled the anger among the people and this turbulent situation seems to have become a vicious circle which will only result in more innocent deaths. The use of force by security forces has not been limited to demonstrations, but they even entered homes and embarked on ruthless rampages, which only deteriorates the situation. Zahid Farooq (17 years), Tufail Mattoo (17 years) and Inayat Khan (16 years) were not part of any demonstration or agitation, but were either playing cricket or on their way attending tuition, but they were killed ruthlessly by tear gas shells and bullets fired upon them by Indian Security forces, without any reason or provocation whatsoever. The brain of one of these kids was blown out by a tear gas canister. Even during these atrocities, I am proud to state that my Kashmiri people defied communalism and portrayed honesty and Kashmiriyat as they welcomed this year's Hindu pilgrimage and made sure that none of the pilgrims were hurt or refrained from performing their religious duties. On the other hand the Indian Security forces have forbidden the Kashmiri people from performing their religious duties, as the doors of the largest Mosque in Kashmir have remained closed for the last month amidst curfew.

A 24-hour curfew has been imposed by the Government which has made life come to a standstill. Educational institutions, businesses and hospitals have remained closed for over a month now. Patients are deprived from medical attention. People are frustrated as they have been confined to their homes and scarcity of essential needs has been prevailing. Corruption has been flourishing, because innocent youth is being arrested and extorted for money and otherwise charge sheeted with serious crimes. Even local Ministers have said that the Indian Security forces are out of their control. The Indian establishment and intellectual class, including the Indian Prime Minister, Indian President, Indian Home Minister and Indian media have been silent over these atrocities and numb to people's cries for justice. Local Kashmiri media has been banned and local journalists are assailed. The justice system has collapsed as the courts have clearly been degraded to toothless tigers. Thousands of detainees are cleared by courts of charges, but as soon as they are released, they are again arrested by the police and detained under draconian laws like Public Safety Act (PSA) and Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA). These laws have their roots in the Defence of India Act (DIA) which was enacted during the British rule. PSA is actually a more rigorous form of the DIA that was described, as a draconian and a black law enacted by Britishers to suppress Indian freedom struggle, by the founding father of Indian democracy Mahatma Ghandi.

My people are treated like colonial slaves and expropriated of their freedom and inalienable rights. As your Excellency is the safeguard and trustee of Human Rights and Liberty, I, on behalf of the enslaved Kashmiri nation, humbly request your Excellency to take note of the grave human rights violations in Kashmir and address the reign of state terrorism unleashed upon us. If addressed, the below mentioned points could prove to be a foundation in resolving the decades old Kashmir issue:

1) Revocation of draconian laws like AFSPA and PSA
2) Demilitarization of Jammu & Kashmir and removal of bunkers and military establishments
3) Release of all political prisoners
4) Clarity on disappearances and creation of an enquiry and monitoring system into these disappearances under the supervision of the UN
5) Rehabilitation and opportunity of pursuit of happiness for all those who have abandoned violence
6) Rehabilitation and creation of a mechanism to bring back all Kashmiris who left their motherland during the 20-years of violence, including Kashmiri Pandits.


Dear Excellency, the above mentioned points are not a solution to the Kashmir problem, but they could provide the Kashmiri people a breeze of peace and prove to be essential in creating an atmosphere and fundament among the concerned parties, in order to make way for a lasting solution to this issue. Your Excellency, the people of Kashmir have been suffering for more than half of a century and are in desperate need of justice and rejuvenation of their self-esteem.

Your Excellency, I hope that you will bring your personal influence to bear to initiate a peace process, which will include the people of Jammu & Kashmir, in order to reach a peaceful settlement which will be based on the incontestable principles of justice.

With kind regards,

M. Hashim Qureshi
Chairman JK Democratic Liberation Party.

Copies to:

1) His Excellency Mr. Barack Obama, President of the United States of America
2) His Excellency Mr. Dimitry Medvedev, President of the Russian Federation
3) His Excellency Mr. Hu Jintao, Paramount leader of the People's Republic of China
4) Her Excellency Mrs. Hillary Clinton, United States Secretary of State
5) Esteemed Mr. Richard Holbrooke, United States Special Envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan
6) Esteemed Mr. Nelson Mandela, Former President of South Africa
7) Mr. Kenneth Roth, Executive Director Human Rights Watch
8) Mr. Salil Shetty, Secretary General Amnesty International