BIRMINGHAM: Editor of Kashmir Times and a prominent Kashmiri intellectual Ved Bhasin has blamed India for pushing Kashmiri people to wage an armed struggle for their legitimate rights. Addressing a reception here hosted in his honour by Tehreek-e- Kashmir UK, Bhasin said State Legislative Assembly elections in 1987 was the turning point when Kashmiris were denied democratic right to choose their true representatives.
He said the elections were rigged at gun point by Indian installed state machinery. “The Kashmiris were left with no choice and thus were forced to take gun in their hands as a last resort for achieving their democratic rights,” he stated. He regretted that international community had also failed to fulfill its promises made with the Kashmiri people regarding their right of self determination and to ensure peace and stability in the region by choosing not to resolve Kashmir issue.
Terming the ongoing dialogue process between India and Pakistan as futile, Ved Bhasin said people of Kashmir had gained nothing from the dialogues continued for over four years. Kashmiris are still being oppressed, tortured, killed and their human rights are not respected, he stated. He said both India and Pakistan would have to trust Kashmiris to find a viable solution to the over half century old conflict that had devoured thousands of human lives and brought miseries to thousands others. There is no military solution of the Kashmir issue and Kashmiris can not be subdued by using force, he added.
He dismissed the impression that Kashmiri peoples’ struggle was communal war.Hindus and Muslims have been living in the state with complete peace and harmony for centuries, he said. The Kashmiri Hindus, he said, were essential part of the freedom movement till 1990 when under a well planned conspiracy they were forced to leave Kashmir to dub the freedom movement as communal issue. Speaking on the occasion, President Tehreek-e- Kashmir Mohammad Ghalib said all patriotic forces irrespective of their religion, creed and sect must join hands to foil conspiracies of Kashmiri’s division. He said granting Kashmiris their inalienable right of self determination under UN resolution is only viable solution to Kashmir issue.
Demanding participation of legitimate Kashmiri representatives in the dialogues between India and Pakistan, Ghalib said sidelining some of the genuine Kashmiri leaders would be counterproductive. He also apprised the chief guest about the activities of Tehreek-e-Kashmir in the UK and Europe.-SANA