For India, the repercussions of its brazen act of crossing the border and shelling made their presence felt inside the Indian held Kashmir, where a Black Day condemning the uncalled show of force was observed yesterday. President Azad Jammu Kashmir Muhammad Yaqui Khan’s statement that the Kashmiris are one with the Pakistan army reflects the general sentiment up in the Valley.
Meanwhile, the border friction continues. A flag meeting of commanders of the two countries was held on Monday where the Pakistani demand for respect of the ceasefire agreement was disregarded by the Indian side with yet another volley of fire that injured one in Rawalakot Battal sector. On the other side of the spectrum, the ongoing clashes have effectively proved that attempts to foster friendship were lacking in substance. A Pakistani peace delegation in Gujarat was stopped from participating in a conference, while a peace bus taking passengers from the Azad to the Indian occupied Kashmir was suspended. Another development that also showed to the world the prevailing atmosphere of tyranny was the demand by the Kashmiri leadership including the Hurriyet Conference made to the UN for investigating the presence of 60 unmarked graves. One can hardly disagree with the plea that the Indian army is guilty of war crimes. After all, the recent discovery of about 3,000 graves also point to that reality.
Pakistan’s ruling setup that has been on the back foot so far as the Kashmir talks are concerned has to gird up its loins, and focus the peace process onto its solution. The recent skirmishes are a grim reminder, if more was needed, that friendship or trade or any other such venture with India should be preceded by Kashmir’s resolution.