The Indian Army Chief M M Naravane calling “The Resistance Front” a terror group is a futile attempt to cover up the embarrassment that India is facing in Kashmir. Likewise, alleging that Pakistan is sponsoring the movement is an attempt to malign the indigenous movement. The Indian Chief’s remarks are a pre-emptive attempt by assigning blame to Pakistan before the fact.

Mr Naravane’s remarks are a continuation of India’s old and tested method to not only delegitimise the struggle but also paint Pakistan as an irresponsible state. Pakistan’s foreign office has rightly brushed these claims aside. Islamabad’s claim that India’s accusations against Pakistan are part of desperate attempts to hide its abuses in the valley of Kashmir is perfectly justified.

The Indian Army Chief, while removing the shame and stains of defeat that India is suffering against Kashmiris, is trying to make Pakistan a scapegoat. But his words and threats do not carry any substance. Both the Indian government and its institutions understand very well that the Indian brutalities in Kashmir are bound to invite a response from the people of the region.

There is even a growing global consensus on India’s illegal occupation of Kashmir. The world is looking at the movement in Kashmir as a natural response to India’s oppression of the Kashmiri people. The comity of nations is no longer buying Indian lies about Kashmiris struggle for self-determination. What is more depressing for India is the realisation that the world is siding with Pakistan and giving more weightage to Islamabad’s position regarding the disputed territories.

New Delhi’s strategy is simply unsustainable. The sooner it accepts that Kashmiris will not give up on their right to self-determination, the better it will be for the region. Lastly, the global powers have a duty to reign in India that is growing more bellicose against Pakistan and Kashmiris ever since Narendra Modi has assumed the Prime Minister’s (PM) office.