The Kashmir dispute is the oldest unresolved international conflict in the world today. Pakistan considers Kashmir as its core political dispute with India. So does the international community, except India. The exchange of fire between their forces across the Line of Control, which separates Azad Kashmir from Occupied Kashmir, is a routine affair. Now that both India and Pakistan have acquired nuclear weapons potential, the possibility of a third war between them over Kashmir, which may involve the use of nuclear weapons, cannot be ruled out. Kashmir may be a cause to a likely nuclear disaster in South Asia, which should be averted with an intervention by the international community. Such an intervention is urgently required to put an end to Indian atrocities in Occupied Kashmir and prepare the ground for the implementation of UN resolutions, which call for the holding of a plebiscite to determine the wishes of the Kashmiri people.
Cause of the Kashmir dispute :-
India’s forcible occupation of the State of Jammu and Kashmir in 1947 is the main cause of the dispute. India claims to have ‘signed’ a controversial document, the Instrument of Accession, on 26 October 1947 with the Maharaja of Kashmir, in which the Maharaja obtained India’s military help against popular insurgency. The people of Kashmir and Pakistan do not accept the Indian claim. There are doubts about the very existence of the Instrument of Accession. The United Nations also does not consider Indian claim as legally valid: it recognizes Kashmir as a disputed territory. Except India, the entire world community recognizes Kashmir as a disputed territory. The fact is that all the principles on the basis of which the Indian subcontinent was partitioned by the British in 1947 justify Kashmir becoming a part of Pakistan: the State had majority Muslim population, and it not only enjoyed geographical proximity with Pakistan but also had essential economic linkages with the territories constituting Pakistan.
History of the dispute:-
The State of Jammu and Kashmir has historically remained independent, except in the anarchical conditions of the late 18th and first half of the 19th century, or when incorporated in the vast empires set up by the Mauryas (3rd century BC), the Mughals (16th to 18th century) and the British (mid-19th to mid-20th century). All these empires included not only present-day India and Pakistan but some other countries of the region as well. Until 1846, Kashmir was part of the Sikh empire. In that year, the British defeated the Sikhs and sold Kashmir to Gulab Singh of Jammu for Rs. 7.5 million under the Treaty of Amritsar. Gulab Singh, the Maharaja, signed a separate treaty with the British, which gave him the status of an independent princely ruler of Kashmir. Gulab Singh died in 1857 and was replaced by Rambir Singh (1857-1885). Two other Maharajas, Partab Singh (1885-1925) and Hari Singh (1925-1949) ruled in succession. Gulab Singh and his successors ruled Kashmir in a tyrannical and repressive way. The people of Kashmir, nearly 80 per cent of who were Muslims, rose against Maharaja Hari Singh’s rule. He ruthlessly crushed a mass uprising in 1931. In 1932, Sheikh Abdullah formed Kashmir’s first political party—the All Jammu & Kashmir Muslim Conference (renamed as National Conference in 1939). In 1934, the Maharaja gave way and allowed limited democracy in the form of a Legislative Assembly. However, unease with the Maharaja’s rule continued. According to the instruments of partition of India, the rulers of princely states were given the choice to freely accede to either India or Pakistan, or to remain independent. They were, however, advised to accede to the contiguous dominion, taking into consideration the geographical and ethnic issues. In Kashmir, however, the Maharaja hesitated. The principally Muslim population, having seen the early and covert arrival of Indian troops, rebelled and things got out of the Maharaja’s...