Many Indian Patriots want a total war against Kashmiris to solve the problem of self determination or in Hindu nationalist imagination, Separatism. Meanwhile the Modi-fied Indian State has decided to bring in some Sinhala flavour to Kashmir by bolstering the already 700000 military, para military and militarised police stationed in Kashmir, all operating with full impunity to kill, torture, maim and disappear. India’s unending tryst with Jaffna gets revived in Kashmir by the man many believe responsible for anti Muslim Gujarat Riots (2002). While the Indian State stays true to Nehruvian Dictum of “no material for democracy in Kashmir”  [Mohammad Ishaq Khan, Experiencing Islam (New Delhi: Sterling, 1997)] let us discuss the phenomenon of Kashexit.

The situation post Partition was different. Then an overwhelming majority Muslims of POK(Pakistan occupied Kashmir), IAK (Indian administered Kashmir) and Gilgit Baltistan(GB) would have voted for Pakistan out of shared brotherhood. Then Pakistan wasn’t a failed Sunni Islamist Feudal State. Now the Situation is different.
Jammu & Kashmir is a state fractured on communal fault lines. In Gilgit Baltistan almost 69.05% of the population is Shia who have been massively marginalised by the Sunni Pakistan state. They are also looking at self determination.
In Indian occupied Kashmir Shia population is 10% as per 2011 Census. Majority of whom are poor and face discrimination in public life due to dominance of Sunnis. Besides in the 1990s Lashkar sent hordes of Sunni Terrorists or Mujahideens to strike fear among Shias and force them to support militancy in Kashmir.
In So called Azad Kashmir Shias already are facing the heat of Sunni Islamism in Pakistan. Since Pakistan conducted their last census in 2008 and base the public policies on assumptions let us put them @10%, ball park figure.
Now Jammu which has a 30% Muslim and 66% Hindu Population will vote for India.
39% Buddhists and 12% Hindus of Ladakh will vote for India including the 46% Muslim. Even though there is deep communal divide between Muslims with Hindus and Buddhists.
The Shias of Gilgit Baltistan, POK and IAK will vote completely against Pakistan and most likely to vote for India if there is no third option of Self determination.
Sunni population of POK will vote for Pakistan until and unless there is a third option of Independence from both India and Pakistan which is not there in UN resolution.
Now Kashmir. This is a mixed bag.

 

Administered by Area Population  % Muslim  % Hindu  % Buddhist  % Other
 India Kashmir Valley ~4 million (4 million) 95% 4%*
Jammu ~3 million (3 million) 30% 66% 4%
Ladakh ~0.25 million (250,000) 46% 12% 39% 3%
 Pakistan Azad Kashmir ~2.6 million (2.6 million) 100%
Gilgit–Baltistan ~1 million (1 million) 99%
 China Aksai Chin
·         Statistics from the BBC In Depth report.

 

Almost 95% of Sunni Kashmir will vote against India but how many will vote for Pakistan?

 

 

Why has India lost the plot in Kashmir ?

Kashmiri Azaadi movement was kick-started by Sheikh Abdullah who sought to safeguard interest of Kashmiri Muslim peasants by rejecting Pakistan. He knew the feudal set up of Pakistan will effectively marginalize poor peasants and sought to bring independence and democracy to Kashmir Valley. This didn’t go down well with Nehru  who wanted to project Kashmir as the “Jewel of Indian secularism”. Nehru was adamant to prove that Kashmir with its Muslim majority can thrive in Hindu Dominated India :  an India that was committed to democracy, secularism, and socialism. PM Abdullah was dismissed by Nehru in 1953, only to be reinstated in 1975 as Chief Minister of J&K after Delhi’s Prathiba Patil-esque Bakshi Ghulam Mohammed fell to the charms of Azaadi. Elections rigged by New Delhi imposed Abdullah’s Soviet style rule which only created a new class of corrupt bureaucrats and strangled democracy. This policy went on till 1987 which saw rejection of Farooq Abdullah led Government in 1984 and United Muslim Front led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani. Interestingly the party to trounce the Islamist coalition was the National Conference who cracked a deal with New Delhi. 1987 was a watershed moment in Kashmir’s short political life which resulted in a full blown Islamist insurgency aided by Pakistan and madrassas run by Assamese who themselves were victims of Asommiya nationalism in 1983. This resulted in Exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from the valley as hordes of unemployed mujahideens , fresh from defeating the Soviets in Afghanistan, trickled in. Islamism in Kashmir is as much reactionary as aggressive. While India’s murdering of democratic principles did have a role, Islamism before 1995 was largely encroaching. India’s love with dictatorial politics didn’t end with assassination of Indira Gandhi by Sikh militants. New Delhi employed the services of Jagmohan, a Hindutvababi fascist autocrat, whose rule as governor in 80’s was quite eventful. He sought to surpass himself when Farooq Abdullah fled and presided over genocides against Kashmiri Muslims. Meanwhile AFSPA was imposed on Kashmir by India’s Home Minister , Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, in 1990 which still continues to this day under which security apparatus kill and rape Kashmiris with impunity as in Kunan Poshpora to name a few. Justice for Kashmiris is as elusive as India playing the FIFA WC. It has been 26 years and Kashmir still reels under India’s colonial rule. Thousands of people have disappeared but New Delhi still behaves as the barbaric Aurangzeb. Islamism 2.0 in Kashmir is a post Afspa phenomenon aided by India’s use of ex mujahideens who had crossed over to Pakistan as Ikhwanis led by the Sufi great Kuka Parray who brought terror back to the valley.

A pellet victim

Fast forward to 2008 when Kashmiris gave up guns and came out singing Azaadi non violently. The security apparatus didn’t understand the mindset and treated it with heavy handedness. This resulted in 147 innocent kashmiris being killed. Islamism reared its ugly green head in Kashmir after violent protests of 2009 and 2010 in the form of Burhan Wanis. The execution of Burhan Wani  by Indian forces this july enraged kashmiri’s passion that has already been seething due to capital punishment meted out to Maqbool Bhat and Afzal Guru. Specially Afzal Guru who was hanged to satisfy the collective conscience of the nation and denied proper burial rights. Kashmir does have elected governments who are mostly puppets in the hands of their colonial masters and largely incompetent. While India destroys democratic values in Kashmir by blocking print media, cable channel, internet and mobile services, attacking hospitals and ambulances and pelleting innocents, the hurriyat too dances in this madness as Kashmir burns. What Kashmir needs is a healing touch to bring back the socialist and democratic ideals of Sheikh Abdullah lest the rut of Islamism gathers foothold in Kashmir. Kashmir has resisted Salafism or petrodollar islam pumped by Saudi Arabia but with every passing the failures of Indian state pushes Kashmir towards Violent Islamism that will seek to create a Taliban sate on the rubbles of Sufism. But guess what Narendra Modi invokes human rights violation in Baluchistan on his I-Day address from Red Fort following Pakistan’s raking up of Kashmir freedom struggle on Pakistani Independence Day. Enforced disappearance, fake encounters, rape and death is the norm in both Baluchistan and Kashmir. India is not much different from Pakistani Non-State actors blowing up hospitals in Quetta. In Pakistan its a hopeless situation but India can still act. And Bring peace or else generations after generations will be lost in Baluchistan and Kashmir.

Kashexit: The Math

Map of Jammu & Kashmir showing areas administered by India, Pakistan and China : source: wikipediacommons

Votes for GB self-determination= 69.5% of 1 million (Shia)= .695 million
Votes for India= .25 million of Laddakh + 3 million of Jammu +  10% of 4 million of Kashmir Valley (Shia) +  10% of 2.6 million of POK (Shia) + 4% of 4 million of Kashmir Valley (Hindus & Sikhs) = 4.07 million

Votes for Pakistan= 30.5% of 1 million of GB (Sunni) + [70% of 34% + 30% of 66%] of 4 million of Kashmir Valley (Sunni) + 90% of 2.6 million of POK (sunni) =  4.389 million
Votes for Kashmiri self-determination = [ 30% of 34% + 70% 0f 66%] of 4 million of Kashmir Valley (sunni) = 1.848 million
{ All the figures above are based on assumptions to predict. 66% of Kashmiri population of IAK are under 30 as per census 2011. This demography is much more honest than 34% elders and want freedom from both India and Pakistan.}
Therefore until and unless India really gets its act right in Kashmir Kashexit is a reality. Even though there can be a 30% voteswing towards india from the kashmiri Sunni population until and unless there is a 3rd option of self determination India will not win the referendum including anti Pakistan votes from GB.

Since the UN has dropped J&K from its list of disputed territories the refredum is unlikely to take place. What Kashmir should really do is ask for full restoration of Article 370, revoke AFSPA, bring peace, implement their secular and democratic constitution, reject Islamism and get the financial might. Kashmiris should also agitate to bifurcate the state on communal lines and keep article 370 to only Kashmir. Who knows maybe held a referendum on their own and ‪#‎Kashexit.