You see young men in Kashmir throwing stones on security forces, raising Pakistani flags, chanting slogans of ‘azaadi’, and setting ablaze vehicles. You see Kashmir burning in flames of hatred on TV, in the photographs splashed in the morning newspapers and on your Facebook feeds. From such images, anyone can draw the conclusion that Kashmir and everyone living in the naturally blessed Valley is anti-India. You could be right – some forces in Kashmir are really anti-India. But only a handful of them are actually so! The rest are followers, provoked by Separatists to pick up the stone against India and everyone who says that Kashmir is part of India.
Dar Yasin/AP Photo
Not everyone in Kashmir is against India.
There are voices – Kashmiris by ethnicity, Muslims by faith – who believe that India and Kashmir are one. They reject ‘azaadi’ and point at how the some voices are exploiting and brainwashing the youth of the state in the name of the vague concept of freedom at the direction of their masters in Pakistan.
The Indian tricolour fluttering in Gadsar valley in Kashmir.Getty
Zee News interviewed a few such people. They reside in Gurez, in the shadows of hills behind which lies Pakistan. In the interview, which you can watch at the end of this post, 63-year-old Mir Habibullah, a religious old man, questions the “freedom” of ‘Azaad Kashmir’ and points at the rights abuses in Pak-occupied Kashmir (PoK).
Habibullah says that ‘Azaad Kashmir’ and PoK are part of India. India’s Kashmir is not part of them.
He says the accusations of rapes against Indian armed forces are a ploy by Pakistanis and their voices in Kashmir to break India. “There are ladies who roam freely here. “The armed forces do not even dare to cast a bad eye on them,” says Habibullah. “Who did the rapes?” he asks. “It was Pakistan’s ploy who wanted to take revenge on Kashmir and divided the society.” “I belong to India. I am an Indian and will say this till my death ‘Hindustan Zindabad’”, he says with conviction. “Militancy destroys Kashmir, not Pakistan,” he rightly points out.
It is an interesting interview which shows a side of Kashmir that the so-called liberal and secular voices of India’s intelligentsia never highlight for reasons that can be best explained by them.