Manipulation of the Media
Ashok K. Moza
the following facts related to Kashmir:
- 300,000 Kashmiri Hindus have
been uprooted from their homes.
- Hundreds of Kashmiri Hindus have
been killed or kidnapped.
- The houses of most of these
fleeing refugees have been burnt or looted.
- Those who unleashed this terror
are not freedom flghters but Islamic terrorists.
- Their aim is not to set up a
Democratic Republic of Kashmir but an Islamic Republic of Kashmir.
- Their constitution for
Independent Kashmir will not be based on Democratic principles but on Nizam-e-Mustafa,
a stone age version of Democracy.
- Accession of Kashmir to India
was not the result of a Hindu King selling Muslim Kashmir to Hindu India but
because Sheikh Abdullah, Sher-e-Kashmir, leader of the Kashmiri
Muslims participated and endorsed this accession.
- India has pumped in more than 10
billion dollars in direct aid to Kashmir since 1947.
- Kashmiris are by far the best
fed, best clothed and best housed In the entire India.
- The literacy rate among the
Kashmiri Muslims is four times that of their counterparts in the POK
(Pakistan Occupied Kashmir).
- Kashmir has had several free
elections, unheard of, in POK till recently. Granted some of these elections
were rigged but that is a reflection of the unethical character of Kashmiri
Muslims who conducted these elections.
- The insurgency going on in
Kashmir is planned, financed and masterminded by Pakistan an Islamic
- In all the major conflicts in
the world, Muslims are involved. Be It Bosnia, Azerbijan, Armenia,
Afghanistan, Sudan, Somalia, India/Pakistan, Israel/Arabs. Iraq/Kuwait,
Iran/Iraq, Libya/Egypt just to name a few.
Knowing that these are the
facts, then how come these are not well publicized in the West? Is it that West
does not have the means to discover the facts or they simply do not have the
Interest? Surely it can not be the lack of resources. Since Kashmir is in the
news regularly, be it the CNN, the BBC, or New York Times, we would have to rule
out the lack of interest as the reason. It would also be paranoiac on our part
to believe that Western media has a grudge against us.
This leads us to conclude that the
media is being manipulated by the International Islamic Lobby in a manner that
news that is unsuitable to their cause gets suppressed and any news that does
further their cause is blown out of proportion. Well known lobbying firms and
Public relation firms such as Black, Manafort, Stone and Kelly have been
employed to accomplish this. The manipulation of the media works like this:
Consider the murder of Maulvi
Farooq. He was murdered by the Muslim Terrorists in Kashmir because he supported
dialogue with India. Within hours of his murder press releases were issued in
all the major capitals of the world including London, Paris, Bonn and
Washington. The press releases blamed Indian security forces for the murder of
Maulvi Farooq. The Western media carried this version. The denial by Indian
Government came too late, lacked punch and did not get wide coverage.
Take the Poshpura mass rape story.
Allegedly hundreds of Muslim women were raped by Indian security forces. Again
the International Muslim fronts issued press releases in major capitals of the
world within a few hours. The Western media carried this version of the story.
The whole episode was a lie as the finding of an Independent commission
confirmed. But that took several months, By that time the media had lost
interest and negation lacked the melodramatic effect of the initial story. But
the notion of mass rapes by the Indian security forces persist In the West.
The media is influenced in other
subtle ways. The correspondents of various newspapers (e.g. Barbara Crossitt of
New York Times) was given guided tours by the terrorists in Kashmir. Her stay In
Kashmir or POK was arranged by the Muslim Terrorist fronts. She never took time
to visit Kashmiri Pandit Refugee Camps. No wonder these supposedly independent
reporters only get one sided version of the story.
Along the similar lines full page
ads are taken out in major newspapers in the West (several have appeared In New
York Times). As a result NYT has given wide coverage to the Islamic Terrorists
In Kashmir. Their struggle is being described as a just struggle for 'freedom'
The media manipulation is a fact
that we have to counter. It is eventually the media that shapes the public
opinion, which in turn determines the posture of the particular government.
Therefore we can not ignore media and we need to figure out ways and means to
counter it. It needs to be addressed both at the individual as well as the
organizational level. Individually we need to refute any biased news items
through Letters To The Editor and Feature articles.
The Destruction af a Community
KASHMIRI PANDITS: EXODUS, 1990
VIOLATIONS OF THEIR HUMAN RIGHTS
Kashmiri Pandits, an ethnic Hindu minority from Kashmir valley, has been forced
to the brink of extinction as a community by the Islamic terrorists, armed and
trained by Pakistan. The world must pay attention, as it has to the victims in
Bosnia, to the heart rending story of this peaceful community. Their story is in
no way less tragic than what we have now come to know about Bosnians. Let me
begin their story with the testimony of some knowledgeable persons:
- Congressman Merwin Dymally (
D- Cal. ), Congressional Record, Page H-5241, June 6. 1992:
- " In Kashmir, terrorists
have forced almost the entire minority Hindu community to leave the valley.
Over 72,000 families comprising nearly 300,000 Hindus, Sikhs and some
moderate Muslims have sought shelter in other parts of India."
- Mary McGrory, Washington
Post, August 27, 1992:
- " Across the globe in
Kashmir, an earthly paradise, other blameless people are suffering hellish
persecution not for anything they did but for who they are. The Kashmiri
Pandits, a minority Hindu sect that has lived in Kashmir for 5,000 years,
would like to go home just as much as Guatemalan peasants. They have been
driven off their ancestral lands by the terrorism of Islamic guerrillas who
wish to annex Kashmir to the crescent of fundamentalist countries in the
- Esytrellita Jones, Amnesty
International, India Abroad, August 14, 1992:
- " Increasing killings and
extortion by the militant armed groups had led to thousands of Hindus
fleeing the Valley and living in camps in Jammu."
- George Joseph, United Press
International, October 6, 1992 Dateline:
- " The northern portion of
Kashmir, including Srinagar, is now almost entirely populated by Muslims
after an " ethnic cleansing" operation by the guerrillas [Islamic
fanatics] drove out the region's 300,000 Hindus. Many Hindu homes were set
ablaze by the rebels."
- The Statesman, New Delhi,
July 18, 1991:
- " At least 1,000 people
belonging to the minority community (Hindus) in the Kashmir Valley were
killed by militants and more than 200 were kidnapped and were still untraced
since July 31, 1989".
If this carnage had taken place in
USA, it would equal to killing one million people out of a total US population
of 250 million. The havoc that the killings have caused to the Kashmiri Hindu
community can be gauged by this number. The Pandits are a very closely knit
community. As of today, over a thousand deaths and about 500 untraced
kidnappings of young women have literally touched most of the Pandit families
directly, no matter which part of the world they are residing in. These
killings and other atrocities led to mass EXODUS of this community from the
Valley . Over 300,000 people had to run for their lives to other cities in
India, like Jammu, Chandigarh, and Delhi where they are living as refugees.
This is a disaster of an enormous magnitude for the Kashmiri Pandits. It is a
question of their lost homeland and their very survival. For them the question
now is not of millions of dollars worth of businesses and property left
behind, or thousands of ancestral homes looted or burnt, or the number of
people killed or women gang raped. It is more basic. It is their identity,
ethos and heritage extending over the millennia that is now being obliterated
by the terrorists, armed and trained by Islamic Pakistan.
WHO ARE KASHMIRI PANDITS ?
The Kashmiri Pandits are Hindus,
also known as Batta (but-ta) in Kashmiri. In 1947, they formed about 15% of
the population of the Valley. They are the 'original sons of the soil',
tracing their origin back to thousands of years, to the very origin of Kashmir
,to the great sage Kashyapa who drained the enormous lake called Satisar and
the land that emerged is named Kashmir after the sage. Pt Kalhana's
Rajatarangini ,12th Century A.D, the first chronicle of Indian History by an
Indian, bears testimony to this story.
Kashmiri Hindus raised almost all
'tirthas' (holy shrines) of Bharat in the valley itself. Thus they have
Gangabal for Gangotri, Sangam for Prayag, Sharda, the replica of Haridwara,
Koti tirtha - a thousand shrines at Baramulla. They have Bhadarkali in
Bhadarkal village, the site of goddess Kali (Calcutta) and they have Khir
Bhawani, the holy shrine of Ragnya. Not only that, the Hindus of Kashmir
attributed numberless qualities to Vitasta, the river Jehlum of Kashmir,
singing hymns in its praise. There is an endless list of holy springs assigned
to lesser divinely figures: Verinag Kejnag, Kansarnag, Nilnag, Tarsar, Marsar,
and scores of other springs are deeply intertwined in the Pandit mythology and
folklore. The Hindu rulers built hundreds of hamlets, bridges and temples,
many existing after their names like Letpur by Lalitaditya, Renwor ( Raina
Wari) by Ranaditya, Tapar by Tapaditya, Harwan by Shadrawahan, Kanispora by
Kanishka, Ushkara by Hovishka and so forth and so on. Kashp-Bhoomi, or Kashmir
is so much linked and mixed with the Kashmiri Pandit community, one cannot
even think of Kashmiri Pandit being separated from Kashmir.
Every inch of Kashmir valley
bears the imprint of the forefathers of present day Kashmiri Hindus. How can
they accept their forced exile? The existence and survival of Kashmiri Pandits
as a sub-group of Hindus is so closely dependent on their geographical
surroundings in the Valley that they will become extinct as a distinct
community if they are separated from the Valley for long.
With its liberal and tolerant
traditions, the Kashmiri Hindu assimilated, absorbed and integrated the
essence of those faiths which came from outside into the valley. The mingling
with Islam gave birth to Sufi-Rishi tradition which is an essenlial part of
real "Kashmiriat". " Truly was it said that the Pandits and the
Muslims were two brothers, pursuing two different faiths in perfect mutual
affection, respect and trust." These were the Muslims who could not and
did not support Pakistan in its wars with India in 1947, 1965 and 1971.
However, such moderate Muslims
increasingly turned into a small minority. The indoctrination which had
started way back, from 1947, with the young through Maktabas ( religious
schools) and Mullahs from U.P., India, preaching Islamic fanaticism and
Fundamentalism, hatred against Hindus and India had began to bear fruit. It
was time for Pakistan to change its strategy to wrest Kashmir out of the
Indian Union. It started recruiting the young indotrinated adults for training
in Azad Kashmir. It trained them, armed them and sent them back to the valley
to become a part of the armed revolt which is Pakistan's proxy war, fought
with Kashmiri blood.
PAKISTAN'S PROXY WAR TURNS INTO
WAR ON PEACEFUL HINDUS
The first targets in this war were
the Hindu minority population of the valley. They were seen both as infidels
and killing infidels had religious sanction, and at the same time, they being
loyal to India were the symbols of India to be obliterated as targets of Jihad
The war, undeclared at first,
started on September 14, 1989 when Pt. Tikka Lal Tapiloo, a well known Hindu
leader was gunned down in cold blood outside his home early morning. That was
followed by several other murders, Justice Neel Kanth Ganju in broad day light
outside a bank in Srinagar in November 1989. A well known Kashmiri poet about
80 years old, Pt Sarwanand Premi was kidnapped along with his son from his
home; they were brutally beaten, their eyes were gauged out and the two were
finally hanged to death. Over 300 well known people from all walks of life
were killed in a very short time. The Hindu community was totally struck by
Coinciding with these gruesome
events, posters started to appear in Srinagar and other towns asking people to
observe strict Islamic codes regarding dress, food and entertainment. Video
shops and cinema theaters were forced to shut down their business, and alcohol
was banned. Islamic dress code for women was enforced, much against their
will. Time on the clocks and watches was changed from Indian Standard Time to
Pakistan standard time; even the Pakistani currency was put into circulation
in place of the Indian currency. In other words, Kashmir valley had become a
de facto Pakistan territory and with each move, public were coerced to give
their approval by their participation. Young men wielding guns and pistols
began to be accepted as status symbols in Kashmir, and being called a
mujahideen became a real 'honor' for the boys and their families.
JANUARY, 1990: JIHAD BEGINS
On January 4, 1990, Aftab, a local
daily of Srinagar published a press release from Hizbulmujahdin, one of the
major terrorist organizations favoring merger of the J & K State with
Pakistan, threatening Kashmiri Hindus to Ieave Kashmir. The Press release
declared in no uncertain terms, that those not obeying the directive will be
simply annihilated. Alsafa, another daily repeated this warning.
Hysteria about Jihad by Kashmiri
Muslims reached a feverish pitch on January 19, 1990 when the JKLF,
Hizbulmujahdin and other terrorist organizations declared the introduction of
Nizam-e-Mustafa or Islamic rule in Kashmir. Kashmiris were asked to come out
of their homes with whatever tools and weapons they had and demonstrate in
streets to defy the curfew that the Government had imposed. Street
demonstration continued unabated for three days. Jihad became the buzz word in
all private and public conversations.
On the night of January 19, all
mosques in the valley began to broadcast from the loudspeakers that are used
normally for prayer calls, a taped message which ran non- stop twenty four
hours for three consecutive days:
" Kashmir mein agar rehna
hai, All-ho-Akbar kahna hai"
- ( If you wish to stay on
in Kashmir, you will have to chant nothing but Alla-ho-Akbar)
" Yahan kya chalega:
- ( What kind of Law will prevail
here: none other than the Kuranic law )
And third slogan which was
devastating for Hindu morale was the following:
"Asi gachchi Pakistan,
Batao roas te Batanev san "
- ( We want Pakistan, along
with Kashmiri Hindu women but without their menfolks )
As the campaign for Jihad
intensified, so did the campaign of terror against Kashmiri Hindus. Selective
killing of known Hindus soon turned into indiscriminate murder of Hindus as a
matter of daily routine. Many were killed in a brutal manner in order to
terrorize other Hindus. Hindus started getting death threats by phone and by
mail. Many found their front doors covered by warnings and death threats and
death warrants. In some cases the terrorists simply entered into Hindu homes
and ordered them to leave within 24 to 48 hours!
The message of the terrorists to
the Hindus was loud and clear: Ralive, ,Tslive or Galive (Either mingle with
us and be a part of us, or run for your life, and if you do neither, then
death is your end). Hindu homes became the targets of stoning as well as fire
bombing by Muslim terrorists. Hindu women dared not come out of their homes
for fear of getting molested or raped. Hindu temples became the targets of
fire bombing, grenade attacks and arson. The trauma inflicted on Hindus was
not only physical but psychological also. Was it Hitler's Brown Brigade which
was torturing them as they did to the German Jews before launching a full
fledged campaign to exterminate them? No, the mujahdin's were worse, they were
not satisfied with just killing a Hindu, they tortured even a dying
Kashmiri Hindu community was
paralyzed by the rapidity with which the events were moving. They were
convinced that the terrorists really meant to enforce the three options given
to Hindus. They could not accept conversion to Islam and join the mujahdin's
in their demand to join Pakistan and be disloyal to India. And the only choice
they had was to run for their lives if they wanted to survive. The EXODUS of
Hindus had begun. They ran to Jammu, became refugees and to suffer at the
hands of bureaucrats and indifferent Government officials.
Today, this community, inspite of
its glorious past, its great contribution to Literature, Arts, Temple
arhitecture, Science and Philosophy and also to India's Freedom struggle
through its illustrious families Nehrus, Saprus, Katjus, Kouls and so on is on
the brink of extinction as a community. They are refugees in their own
country. Being so small in number, they are no 'vote bank' for the ruling
Congress party. The have to go back to their "homeland" in the
valley. If present rulers of India fail them in that regard and continue to
disregard and ignore them, they have no other option but to appeal to the
world conscience for HELP!.
To conclude, the Constitution of
India FAlLED to protect the Kashmiri Pandits. The Islamic terrorists VIOLATED
all their rights as citizens of free, democratic and secular India, and even
as human beings entitled to protection under Human Rights Declaration as
promulgated by the United Nations, yet there seems to be no one espousing
their cause. Hope this article will enlighten the netters, the US public and
politicians about the gross injustice which has been committed by Islamic
fanatics, supported by Pakistan, against this small peace loving community.
1. Headlines from local newspaper
"Alsafa", Srinagar on April 14, 1990: "Kashmiri Pandits
responsible for duress against Muslims should leave the valley within two
2. Press release of Hizbul
Mujahideen faction of Kashmiri terrorists published in the morning edition of
Urdu daily "Aftab" on 1/4/1990. The headlines proclaimed: "The
aim of present struggle is the supremacy of Islam in Kashmir, in all walks of
life and nothing else. Anyone who puts any hurdle in our way will be
3. Hand bill found pasted on the
doors of Kashmiri Hindu Homes and the streets of Srinagar by Allah Tigers, yet
another terrorist outfit: "Awake and arise Muslims, Run Away Infidels,
Jihad is ahead."
Homeland for Kashmiri Pandits
Vijay Kumar Sazawal
of today is not the same that Pandit Kalhan described in the historical
document, "Rajtarangni". The wondrous years of King Lalitaditya and
King Avantiverman are now merely passages from the ancient history, usurped by
numerous invasions that brought foreign cultures and religions to the
valleywhich ravaged the native way of life.
To understand Kashmir and the
remants of its ancient Vedic culture, one has to learn about its history and by
its history only then can one understand the forces of change that are shaping
the events of the day. Most well meaning people have come to believe that the
current situation in Kashmir is a result of the decisions made at the time of
the partition of the subcontinent. Yet others are tempted to fault one political
party or the other, implying that the problem is only a few generations old.
This incorrect comprehension of the situation is perhaps the most cruel aspect
of the Kashmir problem. Kashmir's history, unlike many other regions in India,
is well documented. As the saying goes, "Those who do not learn from the
history are condemned to repeat it!". So goes Kashmir.
Kashmir's conversion to Islam began
with Shah Mir's regime in 1339. Today Kashmir is Islamized. If one looks at the
Islamic crescent from Xinjiang province in China to the far reaches of northern
Africa, Kashmir is a geographical part of this Muslim belt. On top of it the
resurgence of Islamic fundamentalism in nations surrounding Kashmir, and the
determination by the enemies of India to extend the pan Islamlc hegemony to
Kashmir and to other non-slavic states of the former Soviet empire puts Kashmir
in the vortex of this religious crusade. This paradigm is 650 years old, and it
is important to realize that while armies can be won over, faith and belief are
a different matter.
Thal is why the Kashmir problem can
not be solved by piecemeal solutions that merely overcome the tactical concerns
without approaching the strategic goals. For Kashmiri Pandits, the strategic
goal is to ensure that they survive as a distinct ethno-religious group in the
mosaic of cultures and subcultures that exist in India. As the indigenous people
of Kashmir, they have every right to live in their land of birth with dignity
and in safety. For India, the strategic goal is to ensure that Kashmir stays an
integral part of the country. Equally important, India must ensure that Kashmiri
Pandits, who have maintained an outpost of Vedic culture and Indian nationalism
in the land of Mohammedans for the last 650 years against the most severe odds
and at great personal sacrifice, do indeed survive in their ancient lands to
protect not only the nation's integrity, but also its ideals as a pluralistic
Today Kashmiri Pandits are on the
verge of extinction. Even as late as 1947 they constituted 15% of the valley
population. Today that number is down to virtually zero, as almost all have
either fled or were brutally murdered in the last few years. The main problems
facing the community are not just humanitarian, but also political. The so
called Azadi movement in Kashmir is merely a convenient cover for ethnic
cleansing, and Pandits are being forced out of their ancestral lands to disperse
into the vastness of India so that they will cease to exist as a distinct
culture. Ethnic cleansing in Kashmir started a long time ago. It started subtly
at first when Hindu religious places and properties were appropriated under one
pretext or the other. It was followed by name changes of townS and monulllents.
Anantnag, the second largest city in the valley (after Srinagar) came to be
called Islamabad. Subsequently, Pandit youth were denied admissions to various
professional institutions inspite of their merit and employment was denied to
the Pandit community even when the Supreme Court of India ruled in their favor.
And finally, it culminated in an open hunting season which emboldened militant
leaders like Bitta 'karate' (JKLF cadre) to openly express their joy and
pleasure after killing Kashmiri Pandits. Today the refugees are living in
squalid camps devoid of any human decency, dying a thousand deaths every
The real tragedy in Kashmir is that
the history keeps repeating itself over and over again. For example, reading of
the community journal from 1840's indicates a similar set of concerns as
expressed today, 150 years later. The holocaust of the early 1400's, when only
eleven Pandit families survived the Muslim onslaught in the valley, is not only
a grim reminder of the past but also a warning for the future.
The homeland is an expression of
the innermost hopes and urges of the Kashmiris displaced from the Kashmir
valley. It is a natural and instinctive desire of the community to seek its
roots, to preserve its identity, and to assert its historical, political and
legal rights. Today, more than ever, Kashmiri Pandits need a place, a piece of
their valley of dreams, where they can settle down confident that generations to
follow can practice the way of life of their forerfathers without fear,
servitude or retribution. Just as a home gives a sense of belonging to an
individual, so a homeland generates a feeling of roots, a sense of identity and
an umbrella of security to its people.
The homeland provides a choice
never before made available to Kashmiris, and in particular to Pandits who have
lived a life of subjugation and second class citizenry for nearly 650 years. The
choice is between the theocratic elements on one side, who pay lip service to
secularism but promote religious bigotry that led to the current mayhem, and on
the other side the nationalistic elements who would like Kashmir to be treated
like any other part of India, where every peace loving citizen can enjoy the
fruits of true democracy and true secularism. Homeland will be a Union Territory
governed by the provisions of the Indian Constitution without fetters of the
Article 370. It will be open to all who wish to live in a secular democratic
It is important to understand that
the demand for a homeland is not an expression of ethnic or regional chauvinism,
but one of survival of a community on the verge of extinction. This demand is
essential in breaking the paradigm that exists today not only in the
geopolitical sense, but also in the mind set of Kashmiri Pandits who are
resigned to their fate and unable to think or act boldly. The homeland will
provide a safe haven for the minorities traumatized by the loss and abuse of
their human rights.
A call for the homeland is a
reinforcement to the Indian claim to Kashmir which has been the crown of India
ever since the Vedic times and the cradle of civilization of which the Kashmiri
Pandits are true heirs, defenders and inheritors.
A call for a homeland is a cry for
survival among the loyal Indian citizens from Kashmir who have guarded this
Indian oputpost of secularism and democracy against the march of pan-Islamic
hegemony that has already humbled much larger and more martial communities than
This is their call. It needs to be
understood properly. It needs your support.
Pakistan's Proxy War in Kashmir
by Dr. Ashok Raina
current unrest in Kashmir valley started in December 1989. Until that time,
murder, rape and arson could never be atrtributed to the indigenous population.
Firerarms were extremely rare, and used only for game hunting. The so called
'freedom movement' started with the killing of the Kashmiri Hindu elite,
kidnapping and raping their women, looting and burning of their property and
desecration of their places of worship. Every thing that was considered
unislamic was destroyed. Nearly a quarter of a million HIndus and Sikhs were
forced to leave the valley and live as refugees in other parts of India.
Subsequently, a large number of secular minded Muslims, fearing for their lives,
also left the valley.
The Muslim League pursued the
division of India based on lhe two-nation theory. It is said that when the idea
of Jammu & Kashmir being part of Pakistan was raised, their leadership
suggested that they should instead concentrate on Hyderabad, because
"Kashmir offered nothing but rocky mountains". When the ruler of the
state, Maharaja Harisingh chose to say independent, Pakistan changed it's mind.
It mobilized a sizable invasion force of Pakistanis comprised of Afridis and
Mahsuds (collectively called Kabailis and known to the cruellest fighters). On
October 22, 1947, they marched into the Kashmir valley with explicit
instructions that the women and the loot would be theirs to keep whereas,
Pakistan government would get the land. The mopping up was conducted by the
Pakistani army under the command of Major General Akbar Khan. In Baramulla
alone, nearly 3,000 residents were mercilessly murdered. The tales of torture
are too horrifying to narrate. As a child I remember how Sheikh Abdullah, the
popular leader in Jammu & Kashsmir, mobilized volunteers in the valley to
protest against the Pakistani sponsored carnage. The Maharaja sensing the
gravity of the situation and with the full support of Sheikh Abdullah signed the
accession to India and requested help from the Government of India. On October
27, Indian troops landed in the valley and by November 7, the raiders were
routed. Indian committed the most serious blunder by not expelling the
Pakistanis from the entire Jammu & Kashmir state before accepting the
ceasefire. The result of that blunder is that one third of the state has been
illegally occupied by Pakistan for the past 45 years. The area is referred to as
Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK). Pakistan made two miscalculations; allowing the
invading army to waste time by indulging in arson, rape and murder and hoping
that the Kashmiri Muslims would greet them with open arms, which never
Having failed in its earlier
mission, Pakistan formulated another plan in 1965. It trained 30,000 men,
including members of its regular armed forces to conduct subversive activities
in Kashmir. On august 5, large number of these armed subversives infiltrated the
valley and even reached the outskirts of Srinagar. India was caught offguard,
but once again the sensible people of Kashmir "betrayed Pakistan" by
helping to thwart the invasion. There was no popular uprising and the
infiltrators were liquidated. However, Pakistan intoxicated with Americans arms,
launched a full scale war on September 1 in the Chamb Jaurian sector. It would
have even won the war had Indian not retaliated with full force in the Lahore
and Sialkot sectors. Once again the Pakistani plan was defeated.
In December 1971, Pakistan extended
the war for the liberation of East Pakistan and formation of Bangladesh to Jammu
& Kashmir. Pakistan suffered a humiliating defeat and once again could not
achieve its sinister plan to annex Jammu & Kashmir by force. In an interview
with Fargo Forum (December 1971) a Pakistani research scholar (of Punjabi
origin) said, "we never liked Bengalis anyway, and they did not contribute
anything to the prosperity of Pakistan". This is probably how Pakistanis
feel about Kashmiris. Recently a Pakistani journalist, told me that
"Pakistan has no real interest in Kashmir, it only wants to avenge Indian's
role in the formation of Bangladesh". On July 3, 1972, Pakistan and lndian
signed the Shimla Agreement. The agreement states that the line of control
resulting from the December 1971 cease-fire shall be respected by both sides
without prejudice to the recognized position of either state.
The three wars so far had proven
very costly for Pakistan. It became clear to them that in an armed confrontation
with India they did not have a chance. Moreover, the next war could involve
nuclear weapons and prove much more devastating. In order to win, they would
first have to indoctrinate Kashmiri Muslims in Islamic fundamentalism. Thus was
conceived "Operation Topac" some time in the early eighties. The aim
was to use Kashmiri Muslim youth as the ammunition. After proper religious
indoctrination, thousands of them were taken across the border for arms
training, and then sent back to cause large scale subversion. Pakistanis were so
sure of their success that on February 5, 1990, the government sponsored a
strike in Pakistan. People paraded with placards that read, "Kashmir will
be in Pakistan". In March 1990, Benazir Bhutto visited a training camp in
POK and pledged nearly five million dollars in support of "freedom
fighters", still much cheaper for Pakistan than any of the earlier wars.
She also emphasized that Pakistan was ready to wage a thousand year war to free
the Kashmlri Muslim brethren. Nawaz Sharif the ex- Prime Minister of Pakistan
said on May 3, 1992 "Kashmir would become part of Pakistan and thanksgiving
prayers would be offered in the mosque of Srinagar." In the Washington Post
of April 23, 1990, Selig Harrison wrote "By 1984 the Pak Army's Field
Intelligence Unit (FIIJ) was helping to organize the Liberation Front in the
lndian held Kashmir Valley. By 1988, the Inter Services Intelligence Directorate
(ISI) in Islamabad had begun to set up training camps in Pakistan held Azad
Kashmir, manned by retired Pakistani army officers". The BBC reported on
May 1, 1990 "The (Kashmir dissidents) are being trained in a variety of
modern armaments..., because they were not allowed out of their camps, they were
unsure whether it was Pakistan, or in POK, or whether it was Afghanistan".
Mushaid Hussain wrote in Ihe Frontier Post of May 29, 1991, "the other
approach, which Pakistan has apparently adopted in regard to Kashmir is an
'Afghan Model' essentially a protracted war, which has made Kashmir into a
bleeding wound for India...". According to a recent account the security
forces in Kashmir have recovered the following weapons from the terrorists: 455
rocket launchers, 474 machine guns, 7,846 AK series rifles, 2,607 hand guns,
8,030 hand grenades, 966 rockets, 1,622 mines, 2,990 kg of explosives, 1,002
bombs, and over 900,000 pieces of assorted ammunition. In addition the
terrorists have from time to time claimed possession of Stinger missiles. Most
of these arms were supplied by the U.S. to Pakistan for the Afghan mujahedeen.
The events in the subcontinent took
a different turn in 1990 when the United States realized that a war betweeen
Pakistan and Indian over the Kashmir issue was inevitable and could involve
nuclear arms. This was based on U.S. intelligence reports that Pakistan was
arming its F16 planes with nuclear weapons. In May 1990, Robert Gates told the
Pakistani leaders, "you guys are going to have to stop supporting terrorism
in Kashmir". In response, the Pakistani President assured Mr. Gates that
the Pakistani training camps for Kashmiri insurgents would be shut down (Seymour
Hersh, March 1993, New Yorker). The U.S. State Department released a report on
April 13, 1991, which stated "there were continuing credible reports
thorughout 1991 of official Pakistani support for Kashmiri militant groups
engaged in terrorism in Indian controlled Kashmir.. " However, the problem
has not been rectified as evidenced by concerns raised by John Monjo, the U.S.
Ambassador to Pakistan. In a conversation with a select group in Islamabad on
March 31, Mr. Monjo said "Washington is deeply concerned over Pakistan's
support to terrorist activities". Next day most Pakistani newspapers
carried the following headline, "Pakistan involved in terrorism, implies US
For the past 45 years, the people
of Jammu & Kashmir enjoyed full freedom and security as part of secular
India. For all practical purposes the Kashmiri Muslims ruled the state as they
wished. The ruling elite of Pakistan however, had a different plan. They had
decided that the future of the Kashmiris lay in letting themselves be submerged
in the intolerant, Islamic theocratic state of Pakistan. Nawabzada Nasrullah
Khan, chief ot the Pakistan Democratic Party said in February 1990, "my
greatest fears come from those who are pleading that Kashmir may be given
independence. This could be most dangerous for Pakistan and Kashmir
itself". Pakistan once again forgot that a few thousand terrorists will not
be able to dictate Pakistan's wishes to the millions of Muslims, Hindus,
Buddhists and Sikhs of Jammu & Kashmir state. We hope and pray that the
majority of Kashmiri people see through this sinister plan of Pakistan and avoid
further destruction of this land of beauty. In the words of Edward Gargon,
"The state of Kashmir is a garden lost to the savagery of war."
Fourth International Symposium on
Terrorism in Kashmir
Minorities and Human Rights
May 8, 1993
Sponsored by: IAKF, KOA, AIA