Freedom’s terrible thirst, flooding Kashmir,/ is

bringing love to its tormented glass.

Stranger, who will inherit the last night/ of the past?

Of what shall I not sing, and sing?

–Agha Shahid Ali

 

It was the year 1991, when the government of Pakistan celebrated the first Kashmir day on 5th Feburary. Since then, the government of Pakistan and citizens observe 5th Feburary as Kashmir day to show their solidarity with the Kashmiri people in their struggle against Indian occupation. The late South African anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela after defeating apartheid at home famously said “We know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of Palestinians.” If Nelson Mandela were among us today, he would have added Kashmiris’ struggle against India to the speech he made in Pretoria in solidarity with the Palestinian people. Mandela’s edited text would read, “We know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of Palestinians and Kashmiris.”

After Modi government revoked Articles 35 and 370 of the Indian constitution, the valley is under lockdown. The sinister move has rightly angered Pakistan, as India will now change the demography of a disputed land. Pakistani state and people since then have intensified their support to Kashmiri people in their resistance to the Indian designs. This Kashmir day is set to unite the Pakistani government and non-government bodies in presenting the case for freedom of Indian held Kashmir.