At the age of 95 ears, I am witness to the freedom movement against the British Empire. I had the opportunity to attend a few rallies by our beloved Quaid, Mr. Muhammad Ali Jinnah. I remember, once the Quaid-e-Azam visited Kashmir, which he considered to be the Jugular Vein of the to be created Pakistan.

On his way back, the Quaid was to come to Rawalpindi. I was among the thousands of people who flocked to Brakahu to see their leader. People were overpowered by their emotion and nobody including the Quaid at that time had any doubt that the state of Kashmir would become part of Pakistan, until India in connivance with the ruler of Kashmir backstabbed the people of the valley as well as Pakistan in 1947.

However, the issue went to the United Nations, which decide that it would be settled in line with wishes of the people of Kashmir. Seventy-two years, three wars and countless deaths of innocent people later, the dispute is even farther from any settlement. Worse so, the re-elected PM of India, following his party’s extremist manifesto scrapped article 370 of Indian constitution that gave Kashmir special status. He plans to divide the valley into three union territories Jammu, Ladakh, and Kashmir.

If past behavior is any indication, I am afraid like Gujrat when Modi was CM, the Muslim majority of the Kashmir Valley is at risk of worst kind of atrocities at hands of Modi led fanatic India. Unfortunately, the International community seems compromised by economic interests and is not doing anything to stop the imminent danger to eight million people of Kashmir valley. Our government is doing it’s best to highlight the issue and provide support to our Kashmiri brethren, but the International community for economic interest and other reasons seems oblivious to the imminent danger being faced by eight million people of the Kashmir valley who are under siege for 25 days now. At the age of 95, my heart bleeds to see that this is happening in the 21st century.

I never imagined that this would drag so long and would take the turn for the worst. I want to be part of the rally / protest by the parliamentarians and citizens to show solidarity with Kashmir, but my age and health frustrates my wishes. It is my wish that I see Kashmir liberated from evil clutches of India soon.

RAJA SHAFAATULLAH,

Islamabad.