KASHMIR SOLIDARITY DAY By: Muhammad Shoaib Khan

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Kashmir Day was first proposed by Qazi Hussain Ahmad of Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan(a political party) in 1990. In 1991, the then-Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif called for a “Kashmir Solidarity Day Strike” Followed by public processions Pakistan government try to aware international community regarding suppression of Kashmiris in Indian administered Kashmir. Also, special programmeswere held to demonstrate complete solidarity with the Kashmiris and protests were arranged against the Indian oppression of Kashmiris.It is observed to show Pakistan’s support and show unity with the people of Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir. Solidarity Day is on February 5, and this day is observed by the people in Pakistan and Kashmir who have been fighting for their freedom for more than 70 years. This day is also celebrated in honor of the Kashmiris who have lost their lives in the fight for freedom.  Activities on the day are conducted across Pakistan to portray solidarity with the Kashmiri people. Many freedom fighters have lost their loved ones in their struggle for a separate identity on the world’s map and Pakistan supports Kashmir in its primary right to self-determination.

A resource filled piece of land lies in north of Pakistan. Since partition of Sub continent primary conflict in between two rivalries of in South Asia is Kashmir conflict. Both parties claim it as there integral part. Founder of Pakistan called Kashmir as jugular vein, Pakistan always supported right of self-determination to the people of Kashmir so that they could decide their fate. The struggle is known by everyone i.e. from a common man to a diplomat and from Asian to European countries but still the issue is unresolved. So it needs to be projected in international community that human crisis is taking place every day in Indian occupied region. The UNMOGIP is not allowed by Indian authorities to visit Indian occupied Kashmir to know the real picture of the valley. Whereas Pakistani authorities conducted separated visits of the group to let international community know the real picture in AJK.So,Pakistan decided to officially support Kashmir cause on 5thFeb in 1990. As a national holiday, every year day begin with special prayers in the mosques for the “liberation of Kashmir.” A minute’s silence observed throughout the country to solidarity.

Kashmir issue has been raised by Pakistan on a global level, but international leaders and the United Nations have not been successful in solving the problem. However, the people of Pakistan continue to support the people of Kashmir in fight towards their goal by conducting Kashmir Solidarity Day in February every year. The day is observed in Pakistan to show support to Kashmir and let them know that they are not alone. On this day all people pay tribute to the brave freedom fighters of Kashmir who have lost their lives while fighting for independence. This is done to encourage the people of Kashmir and to motivate them.

Similarly killing of Burhan wani and other prominent Kashmiri youth leaders were also condemned by international community but after that there is silence over the issue which cause an unrest within Muslims around the world. Issue of Imprisonment of Yasin Malik was almost took up at every international forum but unfortunately India did not released him. Furthermore Indian abrogation of article 370 and 35(A), scrapped the special status granted to Indian occupied Kashmir,was also condemned by Pakistan, but as I mentioned earlier that international community kept its silence over the issue. These factors led Pakistan to once again show its support and solidarity with Kashmiri people.According to several human rights organizations, thousands of people have reportedly been killed in the conflict in the region since 1989.

In US, New York State Assembly passed resolution on 5 February 2021 calling on the Governor of New York to recognize the day as Kashmir American Day. According to the resolution, the day is meant to recognize New York’s Kashmiri community and to champion human rights including the freedom of religion, movement, and expression for all Kashmiri people, which are embedded within the United States Constitution, through the recognition of diverse cultural, ethnic, and religious identities.Pakistani mission in US thanked New York lawmakers and the American Pakistani advocacy Group for their efforts.

Similarly on a number of occasions OIC reaffirmed its solidarity and support to people of Kashmir and passed several resolutions, condemned Indian act to terrorism within valley and its HRVs against people of Kashmir’s. The Organization of Islamic Cooperation called on the international community to accelerate its efforts to help the people of Jammu and Kashmir decisively achieve their legitimate rights. It stressed that lasting and durable peace in South Asia rests with just and final settlement of the dispute, in line with UN resolutions, and that dialogue is the only way forward.

This year Pakistan government and people, once again showed its solidarity, commitment and support to Kashmiri people and urged international community especially, UNSC to give right of plebiscite to Indian occupied Kashmir so that they could live with peace. The upper house of Parliamentalsoheld senate special session on Kashmir issue in Muzaffarabad, AJK. Demonstrations, processions to highlight the issue conducted and voices will raised in foreign countries to create awareness that what actually is happening in Indian occupied Kashmir. Furthermore awareness campaign in Middle Eastern countries through platform of OIC would also help to pressurize Indian government to give right of plebiscite to occupied Kashmir. At last like every year, Pakistan will never back out from just support to the people of Kashmir and their cause to right of self-determination and freedom from Indian occupation. People of Pakistan salutes the people of Indian occupied Kashmir for their courage in braving the Indian oppression. Pakistan support will continue till the realization of the cherished dream for freedom of millions of Kashmiri people from draconian Indian occupation.

The valley of Kashmir is known as ‘heaven on earth.’ Kashmir is one of the most popular tourist spots in world as it possesses exceptional beauty and is a place that must be visited at least once in your lifetime. Unfortunately, it has been riddled with territorial conflict since 1947.From the partition of the subcontinent, the freedom of Kashmir has been an issue of conflict between India and Pakistan. The conflict between the two countries increases with every passing year.

Writer is political and media analysts who writes regularly on international political issues

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