Overture on Kashmir

Amid signals of fabulous concessions to generate amity with India, Pakistan has set off yet another proffer vis-à-vis Kashmir, which has been the nucleus symbol of irritants between the two nuke-neighbors for the last five-n’-a-half decades.

Towards this facet, the text of President Musharraf’s interview with a British news agency has mottled n’ disseminated-“around the global Atlas-“with mixed feedback from Annan of the United Nations, Armitage of USA-“to Atique of Kashmir.

The top Indian headship-“with its Prime Minister, AB Vajpayee and his aficionado LK Advani-“are, however still mute n’ mum as none of the two have so far come out with an eloquent reaction.

They seem to be in a silhouette of yawning thinking or confronted with a complex course as by accepting President Mushrraaf’s proposal for flexibility, India shall have to seize at-once its groundless typical rhetoric that the disputed state of Jammu n’ Kashmir was its ‘integral part’:

If so happens, it will be a great diplomatic achievement for Pakistan.

Yet, there has been a sharp n’ swift retort in Pakistan n’ in the Kashmiri circles on both sides of the Line of Control [LoC] in the charismatic Himalayan State.

Whereas some have endorsed Musharraf’s point of view, phrasing it as the acknowledgement of ‘ground realities’ as their podium of vision, the others have beamed their outlook that they would-“in no way-“go along such a plea.

Whatever the upshot of the President’s avowal may-“eventually-“surface, pragmatically it appears that he has taken a bold step to bring the radical Indian leadership to the table of talks, an imperative point, New Delhi has-“by now-“been evading with one hideous ploy or the other.

Even with a changed universal scenario-“meticulously due to the post-Nine/Eleven episode-“which has shrunk the role of the United Nations, opening vistas for the United States to behave as the solo master of world’s destiny, Musharraf has always voiced the aspirations of Kashmiris-“in an unequivocal style, overtly supporting their birth right of self-determination, as has been mandated by the world body time n’ again.

With this pragmatism, it is hard to believe that the President would ever let down the nation as he has been and is the firm promoter of peace in South Asia-“yet with dignity n’ honour-“as its pedestal.

Prima facie, he can’t be coerced or dictated by any power-“even its’ a mightier-one like the United States-“towards his perceptions of Pakistan’s national interests-“wherein the solution of the Kashmir issue stands atop. Hence, we are ought to have a reliance in his vision-“explicitly-“in the wake of his zest for bringing the despotic era, unleashed by India in occupied Kashmir-“to an eternal end.

With this realism, it would be rather asymmetrical n’ lop-sided to over-react on the President’s interview-“by lifting eyebrows on his patriotic intents-“as the time ahead shall make every feature, as clear as crystal.

Now when Pakistan is cruising through the most significant phase of its history-“with atypical settings-“specifically due the hostilities, being posed by a couple of its neighbors-“of-course with India atop, it is vital that every-one eschews ‘opposition for the sake of opposition’. Instead, the actualities are needed to be evaluated with a down-to-earth mindset.

Simultaneously, it is an apposite time for President Musharraf to attest that his latest perspective is-“in no way-“a sudden 180-degree shift in Pakistan’s principled policy, for which the country has suffered a lot during the last half century.

Such an appraisal would evaporate loads of perceptible dilemmas as well as several ramifications. Else it will give the impression that we are conceding too much to India in return for almost nothing.

To bear in mind, Pakistan has already proclaimed a number of concessions for India-“such as ceasefire on LoC, moves to increase bilateral trade and accelerating the SAARC processes which might give India an apparent edge in economic and trade terms but in return we could extract only what India had done unilaterally after the so-called attack on its Parliament.

At the same time, India is not only obstinate in getting into a momentous n’ meaningful dialogue with Pakistan to resolve all issues including the longed dispute of Jammu and Kashmir but also persists-“adamantly-“with its ferocious n’ wicked plans to fence the LoC and construct Bagliar power project to the detriment of Pakistan’s interests.

Again, it has to be kept in mind that Pakistan is one of the parties to the conflict and the key party, for sure are Kashmiris.

With this insight, it would have been most obligatory if Pakistan’s apex leadership have had taken the Kashmiri leadership into confidence while airing such a major and extraordinary decision.

The time is still ripe for such a measure. To avert all types of qualms, it would be apt if a series of meetings with top political leaders of Pakistan in the Parliament or outside its two august Houses, even those politicians who are in exile, one way or the other n’-“irrespective of one’s leaning towards a specific party or alliance-“with Kashmiris atop is set off at-once to develop a consensus on-“‘what to do next’-“under the current circumstances, articulated by the changed global milieu.

A skirting or elusion from such a modus operandi would result into nothing-“except a state of perplexity-“which Pakistan can, in no way afford due to manifold raison d’être, more markedly due to its shadowy political situations, wherein a tug of war for power perseveres as an inexorable icon ever since the egalitarian system took re-birth as a follow-up of the October-10 polls-“last year.

The jarring n’ raucous character of certain segments of the opposition-“with the ongoing protest rallies-“against litigious issues like the Legal Framework Order-“LFO manifests this veracity.

On the other hand, the Jamali-led government, which could not carry out even a single noteworthy legislation, visibly because of the inauspicious hullabaloo n’ pandemonium-like episodes in the House-“also seems glued with its own angle of prudence.

Such a backdrop makes it all the more essential that a flexible approach is opted-“both by the government n’ the opposition-“to evolve a reciprocal harmony on the political horizons of Pakistan-“most exclusively on topics like the jugular vein of the nation, Kashmir to thwart every maneuver of the foe-“India.

As a sovereign domain, we ought not to feel fretful on the notions n’ tempers of any power-“even if it is a super-one-“as the national interests of Pakistan are much more vital than the ‘aspires’ of any-one else with any stature-“dwelling beyond oceanic.