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Saturday, June 25, 2022

Yasin Malik: Friend or foe of Kashmir?

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<br>Why is it that the UK government is meddling in India’s internal judicial affairs regarding Yasin Malik who has already accepted all charges brought up against him?

Firstly, it was the British who orchestrated the attack on the independent state of Jammu and Kashmir on October 22, 1947. This attack was conducted by the Pakistan Army and mercenary tribal lashkars who were acting under the direct command of the then (British) Commander in Chief of the Pakistan Army, General Sir Walter Messervy (15 August, 1947 to 10 February 1948).

The aim was to capture Jammu and Kashmir and forcefully annex it with the dominion of Pakistan. The purpose was to deny land access to India to Central Asia, most of which at the time was part of the now former Soviet Union.

The Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir Hari Singh signed an instrument of accession with India on October 26, 1947, making J&K an integral part of the newly established Republic of India. Only then the Indian troops began to arrive at Srinagar airport and push the invading Pakistan Army back.

The scope of this article is too narrow for me to delve into the nitty gritty of why Jawaharlal Nehru approached the United Nations Security Council and asked for a ceasefire agreement especially at a time when we were winning the war.

However, it is important to understand that at the time the British were wary of the Soviet influence spreading into India and secondly, and perhaps more importantly, they wanted to control the trade route to Central Asia.

Since the first Kashmir war (1947-1949) western parts of the Jammu province and parts of Kashmir like Muzafarabad remain under the Pakistani occupation, a separatist movement was artificially created by the aid of the Pakistan military and its ace spy agency the Inter-Services-Agency (ISI) to provoke the Kashmiri Muslim population to rise in a popular revolt. This popular revolt never took place.

Aman Ullah Khan, who was a protege of the ISI, had created the Jammu Kashmir Liberation front in Birmingham, England on May 29, 1977. Therefore, the British connection in relation to the formation of an anti-India terrorist organisation cannot be ruled out.

Right up to 1994 JKLF remained a ‘militant’ (read terrorist) organisation, which was allowed to setup its branches in every major town of the UK, and openly raise money for carrying out subversive activities in the Indian Kashmir.

The JKLF has since its inception been involved in the planning and execution of hijackings, planting bombs and kidnappings. It was in the city of Birmingham that Indian diplomat Ravindra Mhatre was kidnapped and later murdered by the militant wing of the JKLF who were demanding the release of terrorist Maqbool Bhat from the Tihar Jail in Delhi.

In 1990 the Pakistan Army decided to use the jihadists returning from Afghanistan for the ‘Kashmir Jihad’. It was at this point in history a deadly confrontation between the mujahideen and the JKLF goons kicked off. The aim of was to gain and maintain political hegemony over ‘Kashmir Jihad’. JKLF stood no chance during the fight against ISI backed and Afghan jihad battle hardened mujahedeen who began target killing JKLF militants.

It was at this point that Yassin Malik announced (1994) that JKLF would lay down the gun. Malik said that the JKLF would join the peaceful ‘political’ (read anti-India separatist) process.

Charges against Yasin Malik include those under Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and include only those that have committed after 2017. When the charges were read out to Malik he told the court that he was not contesting the charges.

Malik is charged with being a member of a terrorist organisation, conspiracy to commit terrorism, raising funds for terrorist act of UAPA and Sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy) and 124-A (sedition) of the Indian Penal code.

Malik is among the 18 people who are being tried under the above charges and Malik is not even the main accused. The main high profile offenders that have been charged with the above offences are the chief of Lashkar-e-Taiba Hafeez Saeed and the chief of Hizb ul Mujahideen Salahuddin, both of whom are responsible for conducting numerous terrorist acts in the Vale of Kashmir, including the January 19, 1990 genocide of the indigenous Kashmiri Pandits in which JKLF as an organisation and Yasin Malik as its head took part in the murder and rape of Kashmiri men and women. Yasin Malik and the like of him are no friends of the people of Kashmir. They are criminals of the worst order and should be treated as such.

It would be sensible of the foreign minister of the UK to look in his own back yard and worry about the thousands of jihadist of Pakistan origin who are busy converting the English boroughs and towns such as Newham, Tower Hamlets, Birmingham, Bradford, Manchester, Luton and many more into Islamic towns where Sharia Courts might soon supersede the British Crown Court.

(Dr Amjad Ayub Mirza is an author and a human rights activist from Mirpur in PoJK. He currently lives in exile in the UK. The views expressed are personal)

–Ajit Weekly News<br>amjad/dpb

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