Kashmir, which is often called paradise on earth, seems to be largely ignored by the world community now. The dispute over Kashmir has not been resolved due to the forcible occupation of India in this region. Since the partition of India and Pakistan, Kashmir's voice has been largely ignored. It's a question as old as you want it to be, but one that it is alive even today – six decades after the decolonization of the Indian subcontinent which left Kashmir divided between India and Pakistan, clearly suggesting that Kashmiris themselves have not even been asked about their fate. Or been offered a credible mechanism to determine their collective will. After all, Pakistan has always raised the Kashmiris’ voice in the UN General Assembly to make the global community aware about the situation in Kashmir.

Kashmir: whenever the name is heard, people imagine bloodshed and oppression. As time runs, Kashmir still remains under the forcible occupation of India. Whenever Pakistan has raised this issue on international forums, India always performs the duty of an enemy by ignoring it fully. According to India, “Kashmir is their integral part” but why don’t they want this issue to be resolved according to the United Nation resolutions.

Now the people of Kashmir are fed up with India. They want to change their future but India suppresses the freedom movement of Kashmiris. The freedom movement of Kashmir has started very early but due to some faults at different occasions, it has remained disputed till now. But India’s’ Prime Minister Narendra Modi is speaking of the “best democracy” of India, but he never speaks about the killings happening in Kashmir. Neither about Kashmir nor Gujarat, he has not spoken a single word. The world doesn’t forget the Gujarat riots of 2002 about which Narendra Modi has always remained silent when asked. This type of “democracy” has a bad effect on the people living in Kashmir. India always tried to ignore this issue, but Pakistan who always supports the freedom movement of Kashmiris talks about it. But when would this issue be resolved? This is the question that every Kashmiri is asking. And why don’t Kashmiris want to remain with India? This has a reason.

It was the 9th of February, 2013 when Afzal Guru was hanged. It was a shock for Kashmiri people. Afzal Guru was also hanged like Maqbool Bhat in Tihar jail and was also buried there. Mohammad Afzal Guru’s family was not even informed. On that day the Kashmiri people had seen the real face of India. Even the government of Kashmir never tried to bring back Mohammad Afzal Guru, maybe he would have been alive with us….

This incident was also against human rights law. Human rights violation always happens in Kashmir whether it is done with our youths, mothers, sisters or aged people. Asiya and Neelofar were also raped and murdered by Indian security forces in Shopian. But those army personnel’s which were involved in this incident were let free. Is this not punishment for the people of Kashmir by India, who is calling itself a big democratic country? In the same way, the Kunan Poshpora incident happened.

In Kunan Poshpora 55 women were raped by Indian forces from night till morning. And in the same way nothing happened, and the devils were let free. Whenever something happens in Kashmir, politics is being played and nothing more than that. They cannot punish the criminals while playing political games over these issues. Always when an incident took place in this disputed region, India’s Ministers took it easily and always discriminated against the Kashmiri people. Whenever the Elections took place, the people of Kashmir used to boycott them but the Indian media doesn’t cover it and create their own coverages on Kashmir that the people of Kashmir have voted. The Indian media shows the blackest side of media today.

Thousands of youths have been arrested by the police on fake charges and are now locked up in Indian jails. How is the government proving them wrong? No one is talking about these youths. Whenever elections are held, thousands of youths are locked up in jails from all over Kashmir, on charges of stone pelting by Jammu & Kashmir police. And hundreds of youths are being slapped with PSA (Public Safety Act) during that time or other. Most of them are students who are being slapped under PSA. Their career is under turmoil. The government of Kashmir must understand that they are destroying their future.

Most of our people have disappeared and are buried under unmarked graves in Kashmir. Those young ones who left their homes for earning something for their family were kidnapped and murdered by forces and buried under unmarked graves in Kashmir. No inquiry is still being taken into these cases of disappeared persons. The families of those young ones are still in wait of justice from government. But the parents always remember them on “disappeared day” which is being celebrated for those who have disappeared in Kashmir. In Kashmir, peace remains a question mark for people.

The injustice with people in Kashmir has lead educated youths to join militancy ranks. In the past few years it was observed that less qualified youth who took up arms in their hands got killed in encounters with the police and security forces. It was also observed that youth with higher qualification would remain away from the militants. There was a general belief that qualified youth are career oriented and are not concerned about the ‘resistance movement’. But now, educated youths are also joining militancy because of the injustice of the government. Torture and humiliation has forced Kashmir’s educated youths to join militancy.

A boy from South Kashmir namely “Burhan Bhai” is a young face of the fight for freedom in Kashmir. He is an educated youth who joined militancy ranks only at the age of 15. Now he is a commander with 10 other youths joining militancy recently. They are all of educated backgrounds but the Indian discrimination in Kashmir forced them to take up arms. Burhan got 494 marks in the class 10th exam and now he is fighting against injustice with the people of Kashmir.

The hard-line separatist leader, Syed Ali Shah Geelani is in continuous house arrest by police. He is not even allowed to offer Friday prayers. He is an old aged person and is suffering from chest disease, and continuous house arrest made him more unfit. This is against the law: a citizen is not allowed to perform his religious duty. He was not even allowed to offer Eid prayers which comes only twice in a year. The prominent Kashmiri leader, who has large support in Kashmir, is now continuously under house arrest. Is this not human rights violation?

Talking about AFSPA: it is a lawless and inhumane law which was imposed in the state of Jammu & Kashmir to fight against anti-state elements. But here, that’s not it. In reality, it’s not used to fight against anti-state elements but to kill our generation which is supposed to suffer from it. This lawless law allows the security forces to shoot and to kill in any situation. And it allows security forces to arrest anyone without warrants. Following are some excerpts about this law:

This draconian law which has no place in a civil society still exists. After Tripura, it must be repealed from Kashmir too. The human rights watchdog Amnesty International had issued a report right after Tripura government called off AFSPA, which said “It Must go from Kashmir also”. Something is better than nothing. Likewise, AFSPA is nothing than a lawless law which allows security forces to kill innocent people. Tripura government, after all, having a sense of humanity has scraped this law for sake of humanity and for their people. Giving a relief to their people has made us to think that they really do not want their people to suffer more.

The role of Indian army became apparent to whole world during the time of the September Floods. They claimed that “they rescued thousands of Kashmiris when situation was alarming”. Firstly Indian army rescued their own soldiers who were struck by floods and then on second they rescued visitors through which they got message via media, and then finally saved a thin number of locals. But our youths saved thousands and tourists also claimed this on media. Most appreciating thing is some of the soldiers who were struck at their camp got no help, and at that time the youths rescued them by taking risk to their lives. But claiming of Best rescue operation by the Indian army was surprising, as if there was no one except Indian army. It was the role of Indian army during the time of floods. Being a Kashmiri I know the story of half widows, I know the story of orphans and I know how this lawless law works. So, why does the army need AFSPA to operate in Kashmir?

The special powers like PSA, AFSPA are big reasons for educated youths to join militancy. This will continue till the government would not reveal justice and stop human rights violations in Kashmir. The Kashmir issue should be resolved according to the United Nation resolution and according to the aspirations of its people. The people of Kashmir should be offered ‘plebiscite’ whose promise was made by India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru. This is the only solution to this issue.