After the partition, the unresolved fate of princely state of Jammu and Kashmir aggravated the situation between India and Pakistan, and both the countries went to an undeclared war. Interfering in the set of circumstances after India took the case to the United Nations, the international organisation mediated to put ceasefire into effect between the two belligerent countries and in the following years, UNSC passed the resolutions in which not only was the right of self-determination of the Kashmiris people primarily accepted but it also was proposed that the people of Kashmir would be given an opportunity of holding a plebiscite.

Once Nehru made a promise of holding an impartial plebiscite in Kashmir according to the United Nations resolutions after peace would prevail in the state. More than seventy hard years have passed but his long drawn out promise has not been fulfilled so far. On August 5, 2019 Narendra Modi government also made a decision, completely ignoring the UNSC resolutions and the Shimla agreement. Modi government abrogated the very agreement and Article 370 of the Indian constitution which made the state of Jammu and Kashmir temporarily accede to India decades ago.

In his recent address to the nation, Modi pledged that after the revocation of Article 370 Kashmir would progress rapidly beyond the desires and new state of the art airports, railways and roads would be built in the state. The young would be offered employment. False promises of Narendra Modi are catchy enough for BJP’s digital armies active on social media and its “GODI” media, one segment of Indian media that propagates the narrative of Hindutva. Unlike the beguiling facts, when the prime minister of India was overwhelmingly raising false hopes, his own government has cut the internet service, transmission of TV, blocked cell phones and social media for the same Kashmiris since the last week.

During the decisive days of the partition, Indian leaders plotted a storyline to cast some of Sikh and Kashmiris leaders, exploiting the situation when a great opportunity like independence came along. They gave written undertakings and politically made conditional bids with the communities. After a short while the dreams of Punjabi Sikhs scattered ubiquitously and they realised with conviction in the sixties that they had set off an expedition with Nehru by the train that was disappointingly not destined to their dream land. The Indian governments applied deceitful schemes to change the religious and social identity of Punjabi Sikhs.

Hardworking and honest Punjabi Sikh farmers industriously piled up stacks of grain while India was demanding supplementary aids and compelled to import food from other countries due to growing domestic demands. That is well known the green revolution. However, unfortunately Indian governments’ conspiracies and Sikh leaders implicated in their vested interests have played a central role in the journey from prosperous Punjab to a debt-ridden state.  Brahmins have been thriving religious hatred against Sikhs since centuries. One of the economic damages done to Punjab is the distribution of the waters of Punjab to other neighbouring states. The land of Punjab was unfairly divided into three states and some of the regions where Punjabi speaking people were in majority deceitfully attached to Haryana and Himachal Pradesh. The demographics of Punjab were changed, the purpose of which was to decrease the importance of Sikhs in the state. Hundreds of villages were evacuated to colonise a new city – Chandigarh. The Sikhs started protesting after discovering the union governments were toying with Punjab. Undoubtedly, their protests were echoed in the corridors of Delhi at that juncture. Consequently, Indian political elite changed its strategy and became antagonistic more violently to the community. 

When stirred and resilient Sikh leaders raised their voices at great length against then government’s inequalities and injustices, they were labelled as terrorists. The Indian government executed a design to crush the Sikh movement with bare might on the brink of political awareness in Punjab. Finally, the most sacred place of Sikhism on the planet, Sri Darbar Sahib Akal Takht was attacked and thousands of guiltless men, women and children were murdered in this ruthless operation by the Indian Army. Innocent individuals were targeted in the villages of Punjab by the state forces. This scar, which still haunts many of Congress leaders, could never fade away from the forefront of Indian democracy and secularism.  

After winning the 2019 elections, Modi led government has bailed out of the undertakings and promises with Kashmiris, as the previous governments did to Sikhs. The mere difference in dealing with the two communities is that the Kashmiris were bluffed with the lollipop of Article 370 and 35 A for seventy years. Although a large number of Kashmiris have always been against the oppression and cruelty of India, except a few self-interested political fractions. Indian Home Minister Amit Shah validated abrogating Article 370 in the Indian Parliament, saying that the Article was the biggest hindrance to the progress and development of Kashmir. However, according to world economic experts, even in this turbulent state of affairs, the financial indicators of Jammu and Kashmir are much better than those of Gujarat.   

Does economic development only play as ultimate factor to end the anguishes and sufferings of Kashmiris? Is it the substitute to freedom? Some questions arise here, if the conflicting problem of Kashmir has only been spinning around economy for the last seventy years, then why was the Indian army deployed in such a large number on the streets and in markets of the state decades ago? And why is the militarisation increasing in numbers every year? Why are oriental planes aka Chinars fiery in hatred? Why are the dales and valleys so bloody with the killings of innocents? Why are Kashmiri young corpses found floating in Dal Lake? Why are thousands of women being raped every other day? Why are hundreds of people getting blind by pallet guns? A couple of months ago, a human rights activist burst into tears reading out the report on the violence against women in Kashmir in the presence of world media.

In recent times, the aspirations of Kashmiri people have been forcefully constrained by Indian authorities with the boots and bullets of the forces. On the face of it, after reducing unconstitutionally the status of Jammu and Kashmir equivalent to that of Andaman and Pondicherry, will the Indian government be successful to enslave the Kashmiri people? We have witnessed in the chapters the political history shows us that emotions cannot be suppressed, voices cannot be muted and the people striving for freedom cannot be stopped.