Try as hard as it might, the Indian government’s utter failure in obfuscating the Kashmir issue is getting more obvious by the day. The Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) consistent attempts to divide the region along religious lines and pave the way for complete demographic change are now alarming even its staunchest allies. The most recent in the series of brutalities was witnessed on Ashura, when the Indian military responded to peaceful religious processions by the usual pellet attacks, blinding and injuring many.

President Azad Jammu & Kashmir has rightly termed this a health crisis, and the world must respond accordingly. The Indian government on the other hand, is continuing with its practice of pretending as if everything is fine in Indian Illegally Occupied Kashmir (IIOK), and is now seeking to get the issue removed from the UN agenda, claiming that the debate has become dated. This shows us that the Indian government is worried and does not want foreign intervention, because it knows that it is in the wrong and increased scrutiny will only give credence to Pakistan’s stance.

This move by India also points to the success of Pakistan’s diplomatic policy regarding Kashmir. Over the past year, since the imposition of a lockdown, Pakistan has been on the diplomatic offensive. While India makes bogus and inconsequential claims of Pakistan infiltrating IIOK with terrorists, Pakistan has proved time and again—backed by the Kashmiri people—of exactly how India is marginalising the people under military siege. This is exactly why the Indian state is uncomfortable with the idea of keeping Kashmir on the UN agenda; no state that is looking to speak about what is right can claim that India has treated Kashmiris fairly. India’s fear of losing its vice-like grip on IIOK is now palpable. And no matter how hard it tries, Pakistan will not accept moving Kashmir off the UN agenda until the Kashmiris can finally exercise their right to self-determination.