If political wickedness and cunningness had a face, it would be Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). As if changing the geographical and political status of Kashmir was not enough, the domicile law – called Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Order 2020 – introduced this Wednesday would alter the demography of the region forever. Perhaps this piece of legislation is the last nail in the coffin of the façade many understood as Kashmir’s special status under Articles 35-A and 370 of the Indian Constitution. This new set of laws that grants domicile rights to Indian citizens in the region is a classic case of settler-colonialist occupation.

With the introduction of this controversial law, the Indian government has confirmed the fears that it wants to turn Muslims a minority in the region. What this means is that the Indian government is replicating the Israeli model of settlement in the valley. Changing the demographics of the valley will only speed up this process. Essentially, the introduction of domicile rules means the beginning of the demographic assault on Kashmiris. Perhaps, BJP could not have found a more opportune moment for implementing the sinister designs it holds for the occupied territory. The timing of bringing in the law in combination with the other rules recently imposed tells us that Kashmiris need support now, before it is too late.

While the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) criticised and condemned the piece of legislation, other international bodies still choose to remain in slumber. If the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) in its resolution 2334 of 2016 can declare Israel’s settlement activity a flagrant violation of international law, it must call the Indian legislation an act that violates Article 49 of the 4th Geneva Convention 1949, Article 1 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 1966 and UNSC Resolutions 91, 122,123 and 126 among other instruments of International Law. The developments in Kashmir warrant a global response on an urgent basis. If the world remains silent, then it is India’s accomplice in betraying Kashmiris.