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Two years of Kashmir siege

It has been two years since the people of Indian-occupied Jammu and Kashmir have been placed under a debilitating communication and economic blockade. The fascist Modi regime continues to perpetuate untold atrocities against hapless Kashmiris and manages to get away with it.

On August 5, 2019, India took a unilateral decision by revoking the autonomous status of the region and embarked on a nefarious campaign to change its demography. The Indian government deployed a slew of measures to deter Kashmiris from expressing their will, intimidated journalists, placed politicians under house arrest, and suppressed any form of agitation. Thousands of Kashmiris are still languishing in prison as they live under a suppressive regime that has failed to even provide basic rights.

Pakistan will observe the day by expressing solidarity with the oppressed people of the restive region and denounce Indian actions. A lot has changed since the last two years and Pakistan made hectic diplomatic efforts to discuss the issue at UN and other global forums. The condemnation from the international community is still cautiously worded and limited. Kashmir was not even mentioned when US Secretary of State Blinked visited New Delhi last month. Pakistan needs to expedite efforts and compel India to rescind these illegal moves and end all forms of oppression.

The Foreign Office has said the extremist Hindutva ideology has permeated all state institutions and the BJP regime’s record was replete with instances of gross violations of minority rights. Therefore, it must set its own house in order before preaching moderation before the world. Prime Minister Imran Khan has also said how the RSS ideology was an obstacle to dialogue for normalisation of strained ties. As long as India does not shed this hate-filled ideology, there will be a decline in multi-culturalism and secularism in the country.

The completion of two years of military siege is a grim milestone and a reckoning for the global community to realise the grave situation in Kashmir. The Modi government cannot get awat with its atrocities and must be held accountable while India should adhere to international law. It is high time that Kashmiris are given freedom and their right to self-determination for which they had launched a long struggle.