LAHORE  -    There is a sense of deep shock and anger in the country over India’s provocative move to end the special status of occupied Kashmir, which amounts to rejecting the decades old UN resolutions on the basis of which Pakistan has consistently been demanding right of self-determination for the people of Kashmir.

Before going for this step India must have assessed the likely reaction from Pakistan and Kashmiris on both sides of the line of control. Implementation of a step that has been under consideration for long means New Delhi remains undeterred from any retaliatory measures from Pakistan or elsewhere. 

As a matter of principle, the UN should take serious notice of the move and take such steps as could force India to reverse its decision. The permanent members of the Security Council should consider even some punitive measures against New Delhi that has unleashed oppression against the unarmed Kashmiris who are struggling only for their rights.

But more responsibility rests with Islamic countries to do everything possible to get their Kashmiri brethren their rights. Boycott of India in all fields could be an effective tool which could bring India to its knees. There should be no trade at all with India.

If Islamic countries give Kashmiris rights due importance they should not think in terms of dollars or pounds they would lose as a result of the boycott decision. Dollars and pounds have no significance in matters of faith. These countries will get other markets that will compensate the loss caused by India boycott decision.

The Gulf countries like Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain and Qatar are in a position to play an even more effective role by ordering all Indian workers there to pack up and go home immediately.

Millions of Indian workers in these and other Islamic countries send billions of dollars back home every year, which is a major source of earnings for India. Once these billions of dollars are not available, India would realize how serious mistake it had made by striking down the special status of the occupied Kashmir.

But if the Islamic countries confined their role to expressing ‘serious concern’ over the Indian move and the barbarism going on in the occupied territory, or just expressing solidarity with them, which has been the case till now, India would remain unmoved.

The OIC should review its performance and think of measures to activate it. This body should help the Muslims in trouble in any part of the world. This is the spirit of the Islamic brotherhood.

The government of Prime Minister Imran Khan is under greater responsibility to take urgent measures for the rights of the Kashmiris. The prime minister has goodwill even in non-Muslim countries and he should capitalize it.

He should send delegations to various countries to get their support for the Kashmir issue. In case he failed, his party would have no future at all. People would withdraw their support to the PTI on the ground that the Kashmir debacle took place during their tenure and they failed to deal with the enemy.

Since most of the leaders running the government are not experienced enough to deal with the nerve-testing situation, the prime minister should think of forming a national government at the centre. The inclusion of senior leaders from other parties in the federal cabinet will make it easier for Pakistan to respond to the urgency.

Such a step may necessitate reprioritization of the agenda the PTI is following at present. There is no harm in setting new priorities in the changed situation.

The military commanders, who are scheduled to meet today, will review the situation at length and discuss the measures needed to deal with it. But they must bear in mind that if Pakistan ‘digested’ this anti-Kashmiri step by India, then there will be no end to it. Nobody should forget that separation of Balochistan from Pakistan is also on the agenda of the “Butcher of Gujarat”.