Friday, November 26, 2010

Azadi or Merger with Pakistan by Ashok Sharma

Azadi or Merger with Pakistan by Ashok Sharma

8/10/2010 12:39:27 PM Ashok Sharma

I agree with Mr. Shamshad on the issue of the blueprint of a new independent State of Kashmir. What will be its basis? Will it be secular or, Islamic? Will Jammu and Ladakh be its constituents? If yes, whether Hindus, Sikhs and Budhists will be allowed to follow their religion and identity? What will be its form of Government? Will it be a Parliamentary Democracy/Presidential form of Govt., or, it would be a Caliphate/Emirate like Saudi Arabia?

How will the cause of Islam be better served by carving out a country which does not have enough resources of its own and will remain dependent on Pakistan and China for most of its requirements? Will Pakistan allow it to remain independent for a long time, or, its status will be like the so-called Azad Kashmir? Will it be as Azad as Azad Kashmir or, a little more? How will it integrate with the Azad Kashmir and on what terms? Will Jammu and Ladakh get equal status in unified Azad Kashmir or, they will be given away to India?

Will India be ready to give MFN status in trade and commerce to this new State or, will it be treated as an enemy country? How will they protect their country from a hostile India? Will they depend on Pakistan army and to what extent? In my opinion, the real idea behind the concept of Azadi is nothing but unification with Pakistan as an associate state. Such a state may remain autonomous for some time but will be fully merged with Pakistan within a few years as the history of the sub-continent has shown. Northern Areas like Gilgit, Hunza and Baltistan have been integrated into Pakistan similarly. If the Separatists want to merge with Pakistan, they should clearly say so.

Why do they raise the bogey of Azadi? Why don’t they state clearly that they cannot remain in India where they are a religious minority and want to merge with Islamic Pakistan? In the meantime, have they also planned for their fiscal requirements and developmental funds which will have to come from Pakistan, China or, international donors?

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