In Kashmir, nearly half favour independence

May 29, 2010

Nearly half of the people living in the Indian and Pakistani parts of Kashmir want their disputed and divided state to become an independent country, according to a poll published by think tank Chatham House.

A man walks past closed shops during a strike in Srinagar June 11, 2008. REUTERS/Fayaz Kabli/Files London-based Chatham House says the poll is the first to be conducted on both sides of the Line of Control (LoC), a military control line that has separated Indian and Pakistani controlled Kashmir since the U.N.-brokered ceasefire between two rivals in 1949.

The poll has produced startling results. On average 44 percent of people in Pakistani-administered Kashmir favoured independence, compared with 43 percent in Indian Kashmir.

But in the Muslim-majority Kashmir valley, which is at the centre of the two-decades-old anti-India insurgency, between 75 percent and 95 percent support freedom both from India and Pakistan.

The scenic Himalayan region, which is divided between three nuclear-armed neighbours India, Pakistan and China, comprises of three regions — Buddhist-dominated Ladakh, Hindu-dominated Jammu and Muslim-majority Kashmir valley.

Twenty one percent of the population said they would vote for the whole of Kashmir to join India, and only 15 percent said they would vote for it to join Pakistan.

At least 80 percent of Kashmiris on both sides of LoC say that the decades-old dispute is very important to them personally.

The other findings are:
At least 43 percent on the Indian side and 19 percent on Pakistani side are concerned about human rights abuses.

A strong 80 percent on the Indian side and 66 percent on the Pakistani side say unemployment is the most significant problem facing Kashmiris.

Over a third, 36 percent in both parts believed that rebel violence would be less likely to solve the Kashmir dispute, compared with nearly a quarter, 24 percent who thought it would be more likely to.

Robert Bradnock, an associate fellow at the Chatham House think-tank in London, told BBC that the results of the polls show no single proposition for the future of Kashmir which could be put to the population, and get majority support.

“The poll offers no simple fixes but offers signposts, through which the political process, engaging India, Pakistan and wider Kashmiri representation, could move it towards resolution,” Bradnock said.

37 comments

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dear writer:
Kashmir issue has now become so much tangled that it will be really hard for both the rivals india and pakistan to find solutions, how ever the better option is that it is a right time to reach some agreement or point which will be conveincing and acceptable for all the people and groups:
the aspirations of people will continue changing and i firmly believe india coudnt handle kashmir they way they should have, if they would have handled it properly and tactfully the poll results would have been too different:
and about pakistan, people are mindful enough about what thay got out of the past 20 years :
the ultimate solution lies that both countries must realise what people of kashmir want now:
dear writer keep updatng us with insightful information:
Good Luck!

Posted by littlemiss | Report as abusive

dear writer,

Kashmiri’s in India Kashmir are more victims of the political war waged by Pakistan to poison Muslim Kashmiri’s minds to believe that they are victims. Pakistan has created the problem-reaction-solution scenario to draw the Indian Army to sit in Kashmir, to justify its stance against India and they did this by fueling state sponsored Jihad Mujahids into INdian Kashmir, full well knowing that would draw the army to come there and innocents will suffer, and using that as a tool to fuel a fakely generated oppression of muslims by the Indian monster. Before the 80′s, when Pakistan was not fueling low-level proxy wars into India, Kashmir was not an issue.

Everybody has been duped to believe that India is the oppressor, when in fact, Kashmiri’s some of them started to suffer when Pakistan started its low-intensity war, for the purpose of fulfilling a religious geo-political agenda and settling the score of 1971.

It sad that the deliberate ethnic cleansing of Hindu pundits at the hands of muslims in the Kashmir valley goes unmentioned, yet the plight of muslims is the only thing mentioned here. This one-sided view of things must stop and we need to get back to the basic facts, all Kashmiri’s are victims of state sponsored terrorism from Pakistan.

Paid Mujahideens, who fought in the war against the soviets were re-assigned to foment a new low-level agitational war front against India, that is the sole cause of Kashmiri frustration, not the reactionary movements of India, to counter Pakistani terrorism.

Another overlooked fact, rarely mentioned is that Pakistan is not complying its obligations under the UN resolutions and those are on the internet for every body to read.

Another overlooked fact is that PoK Kashmir has slowly been occupied by Terrorist training camps and Punjabi’s and Kashmiri’s, most of them are actually not treated as well as Indian Kashmiri’s. It looks like Pakistan has already geopolitically swallowed up PoK, occuppied it and wants to finish the job completely by grabbing Indian Kashmir, through any hook or crook, terrorist, political agitation or any other means.

The Kashmiri’s need for self determination has been hijacked by a geoopolitically hungry creed and some Kashmiri’s are blindly following that.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive

wOW, refreshingly new topic…

The Indian subcontinent hosts hundreds of ethnicities, speaking 1000 languages and practicing all the religions in God’s earth. There are linguistic ethnic groups- Sindhis, Gujaratis, Bengalis, Maratis, Pathans, Punjabis, Tamil, Telugus, Kashmiris .and so on….the list is long. The only ethnic, linguistic group in the subcontinent that constitutes a separate country is Bangladhesh- born because of genocide of three million Bangladheshis perpetrated by the Pakistan army in 1971.

Some Kashmiri muslims wanting a separate country seems to have born out of sense of entitlement out of events of partition, UN resolutions, etc. Hindus, minority sect muslims, Buddhists, Sikhs all living in the Free Indian Kashmir are opposed to this separation sought by the some muslims of Kashmir valley. In either case another intolerant country based on religious exclusivity is the last thing the subcontinent needs!!! Look where the pakistan project is.

International community is not interested in another country “Islamic Republic of Kashmir” led by Syed Salahuddin of “United Jihad council” as its supreme leader. in the vicinity of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Very funny. Not going to happen.

The priorities are – control of pakistan sponsored religion based terrorism, as waged by Kashmir should be completely stopped. Human rights violations, alteration of sectarian distribution in the Occupied Kashmir are other stumbling blocks. Once this is achieved LOC could be liberalized, but this is going to take a long time after terrorism is stopped. Other genuine grievances of Kashmiri muslims if any could be fulfilled without redrawing of India’s current borders.

Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir will remain an area where people belonging to all religion can live together. No need to erect new Berlin walls!!!

Posted by Seekeroftruth | Report as abusive

Is it surprising after the Zia’s Islamisation process in Kashmir, nay entire Pakistan. The UJC outfits are the emboldened outfits of this pious religious act. If we can wait for another 63 years and then conduct the polls, the whole ambiguity may be resolved automatically.
God bless.
Dr. O. P. Sudrania

Posted by opsudrania | Report as abusive

There should no more mistake made by creating another nation because of religion. Kashmir should look at Pakistan and realize that just because people belong to a particular religion, it is not going to bring any solace or progress as a result. This kind of division will encourage further divisions based on language, ethnicity and so on. I understand the sentiments of the Kashmiri Muslims which arises not so much from a religious reason, but their land becoming a battle field between Pakistan and India. Pakistan will never let an independent Kashmir survive. It will unleash its proxy elements and control Kashmir at gun point. There will be no Pak military inside the independent Kashmir, but there will be plenty of radical Jihadists who would be running the show. Anyone who does not tow the line will be eliminated. Pakistan will then use Kashmir as its vassal state with “strategic depth” against India. Do not assume that Kashmiris will live in peace ever after once they get their “independence.” And China can move in too. If that happens, there is nothing any country in the world can do about it. China now has the financial clout to bankrupt any country. These are difficult times. Until the Af-Pak issue is settled and until Pakistan itself is settled, Kashmir will not see any long lasting resolution.

Posted by KPSingh01 | Report as abusive

There are also some other very interesting observations:

“Overall, a majority of the total population, 58%, were prepared to accept the LoC as a permanent border if it could be liberalized for people and/or trade to move across it freely, and a further 27% were in favour of it in its current form. Only 8% said they were not in favour of the LoC becoming a permanent border in any form – 7% in AJK and 9% in J&K, with the highest level of opposition in Anantnag District at 14%, in J&K and in Bagh District, at 18%, in AJK.”

The breakdown in terms of voting pattern between POK and J&K is also quite interesting.

http://www.chathamhouse.org.uk/files/166 64_0510pp_kashmir.pdf

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

Let us look at it cynically. Neither India nor Pakistan deserved to become two independent enttities.In fact the Brits left the land as they found it split among Maharajas and Sultans. The Indian side with the help of Mountbatten managed to gain the upper hand, and the Pakistan with their British C in Chief but scattered army units were unable to get the Kashmir Maharaja under control. The Pashtoon tribal volunteers went into Kashmir but were not able to distinguish between muslim and non muslim Kashmiris. They got hold of their booty and returned to their homes. Both India and Pakistan have not as of this date raised national armies. Their armies were structured by the Brits to control their own citizens, and this they have been doing ever since. They are suppressing their own citizens and in between they also shoot at each other to pass the time.
They do not have the will to make themselves as Nations. They have lethal weapons but do not have the vision to become independen prospwerous countries.

Rex Minor, not Pakistan

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive

It is Indian establishment which is rrsponsible for all this mess in Kashmir. During the ;ast sixty years New Delhi was not able to win hearts of Kashmir but they trusted few Kashmiri pandits who miss led them.
Indians never gave a kind of belonging to Kashmiris particularly Muslims.
You can read thousands are on roads daily these days protesting killing of three innocent people by Indian army in a fake encounter.
The three were lured by army major for a job and the officer took them to line of control and killed them in cold blood, to earn medals. This pol is fale and I am sure 90 percent of people of the state will vote for independence.

Posted by haleema11 | Report as abusive

Q seekeroftruth, daraundia and dr…pls look at the link and decide… this is not the only case where ur forcs are involved……..it is barbaric

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/arti cle/ALeqM5i1mF12PnKwa_0-CvrhRflp_9mY_wD9 G0ERU00

Posted by haleema11 | Report as abusive

yes some interesting data statistics. going beyond the statics just imagine how much the statistics have diversified. its the outcome of endless dialogues. the problem that never existed has widened beyond expectations. one must agree that both the countries had their own chances to win the hearts of people under their respective controls, but the successive bureaucracies did nothing but exploitation of the people. This time indian kashmir is suffering only because of Indian hidden policies. One must wonder why thepeople who earlier contested elections under indian government turned against them

Posted by emm99 | Report as abusive

yes all the muslim kashmiris want independence. its the way indian agencies deal with kashmiris muslims that force them to opt either for independence or pakistan. if this is the way to deal with your own citizens then the citizens choice for independence is always correct. reffering to the link above…

Posted by true112 | Report as abusive

it is the failure of one of the worlds largest democracy to live upto the expectations of its own people. people of kashmir would never have gone against india if the latter respected the sentiments of the people. The progressive exploitation of the kashmiri muslims together with widening economic gaps due to indian policies alongside the deepening disbelief in indian governments resulted in the search for independence. Policies to destroy self sufficiency of our state and make it more dependent on centre are underway. India is loosing kashmir due to its ownself. there still is time with india to win back the hearts of people before another armed uprising begins. India must understand that only money wont win the hearts of people. nor would its policies of keeping people busy in corruption and vulgarity help. this is not turkey

Posted by ahtishaan11 | Report as abusive

What’s really interesting here is not the poll results on the Indian side, but the poll results on the Pakistani side.

If that many Azad Kashmiris want indepenedence from Pakistan what does it say about Pakistan’s legitimacy on the Kashmir issue? How can they claim to speak for Kashmiris when the 43% of Kashmiris want nothing to do with them?

Even more stunning is that the proportion of the total population who would vote to join India in its entirety (21%) is higher than the proportion who would choose to join Pakistan (15%). That leaves the Pakistani claim to Kashmir on the grounds of religious affinity and fraternity, in shambles. When Muslim majority Kashmir would overall choose to stay in India over Pakistan, how can Pakistan now claim that the religious affiliation of Kashmiris is even relevant?

Posted by kEiThZ | Report as abusive

Haleema,

I don’t think there is a single person here who believes that there are no human rights violations, and that they should go unpunished. This crime, if proved, deserves the most severe punishment. Others are as much concerned about it as you appear to be.

You are well within your right to talk of an Independent Kashmir and call the poll a fake. Most of us do that when the findings are not to our liking.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

It is important to respect the aspirations of Kashmiri people; if they want independence then must have it, this will ensure sustainable peace in the region and will certainly make the relationship between the two neighboring countries better.

Posted by SZaman88 | Report as abusive

It would be in the interest of both India and Pakistan to let the Kashmiris go free. For heaven sake no one has the right to talk about their religion affiliations or historical ties with their neighbours. Most of all try not to mention Islam during your debates. People are born free and are linked with each other based on their culture and values. Those who are identical in their outlook towards life and their culture can easily grow together. The polls simply indicates that finally Kashmiris are now grown up and would prefer to stay as an independent country. One thing is sure that the Punjabis living in India and Pakistan would rather live together as one nation rather than living with people of different cultures and traditions, namely Pashtoons, Bengalis, Sindhis etc. etc. The experiment put into practice by the Indian congress and muslim league has proven to be a failure. India has been suppressing their own citizens but did not come to the aid of their kins in Siri Lanka, and Pakistan has been suppressing the so called muslim brothers not only in Bengal but in Baluchistan but in the Pashtoon Province, and has done very little to aid the suffering Palestinians and Somali religion brothers. The language and the culture divide includind traditions and values have proven to be stronger than the religion alike. There is a very gloomy future for both India and Pakistan. They had their chances and simply because of incompetent leadership they blew it. Have a nice day.
Rex Minor, and not Pakistan

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive

The results aren’t surprising at all. I feel they re-emphasize the need to look beyond traditional positions and evaluate the contours of a solution grounded in today’s realities

It can’t be wished away and has to be configured into the future strategy on Kashmir. We’ve always been pleading to provide an alternative to the azadi sentiment.

Posted by drshugufta | Report as abusive

and @daraindia, plz ask your security forces not to kill innocent kashmiri muslims for money and medals….it is disgusting.

Posted by drshugufta | Report as abusive

Dear writer

Situation in Kashmir is too complex, at times too confusing over the issue of the future of the state. What however is beyond confusion is a deep sense of alienation towards India. There is, of course, a public sentiment that is split- rather unevenly – between accession with Pakistan and the independence.

Posted by sakhra | Report as abusive

Well there is no need for any surveys to find what the people of Kashmir want. The massive pro-freedom protests in 2008 clearly show the trend that majority – and majority means more than 90 per cent of people – in Kashmir want independence from India. It is a secondary question whether they want to remain independent or be part of Pakistan.

Posted by Omder | Report as abusive

the poll is as expected. definitely the view points of the people are diversified on the issue which is a main point of focus. If the ground situation is exact the how to bring out the consensus. but i believe that if the politicians are elected as leaders even with a voting turnout at 20%, then kashmir of both sides be granted their independence not considering the arrogance of two countries

Posted by osman98 | Report as abusive

ya. everybody as a human being is concerned about the human right violations. but kashmir has been in the soul of indian government since it opted for india. india has developed kashmir into a modern state. limitless funding has made state economically strong then it could have been. i wonder why the poll results are so much varied…. where did india lack to gain the confidence of people

Posted by usha.ch | Report as abusive

This poll reveals the the Kashmiris living in PoK or the so called “Azad Kashmir” are quite disgruntled with the Pakistani establishment & don’t feel all that “Azad” (free) anymore. It also reveals that if a plebicite was to be held today in all of Kashmir (as most Pakistanis constantly call for) with the only options of joining India or Pakistan, the plebicite will be in favor of India by a margin of 21% to 15%. So, hopefully this will silence the Pakistanis at least a little bit.

If one needs to analyze Indian Kashmir rationally, one needs to look at it pre 1989 & post 1989. Prior to 1989, J&K was as or more peaceful than any other Indian state. Post 1989, Pakistan, plush with american money & weapons and 10s of thousands of idle Mujahadeen (after the end of Afghan war) decided to implement it’s policy of “bleeding India with a thousand cuts” & infiltrated the mujahadeen into India. The rest is histrory.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

drshugufta,

How many people have been killed by militants? None according to you I presume. Aren’t they just innocent snow white lilies? Pakistan started instigating trouble in Kashmir, now when the going gets tough they and their supporters try any trick to run down India and its defense forces. Won’t work. As to human rights abuses, I have made my point abundantly clear. But please stop this tear jerking hand wringing hypocrisy. It cuts no ice.

Why don’t you tell your friends not to shove across thugs and murderers into Indian territory, and that includes Kashmir. I am sure they will listen to you.

Posted by DaraIndia | Report as abusive

In partition Punjab, Bengal, Sindh (Kachh) etc all were divided. It was J&K which was not divided and its accession to India was in totality by its ruler. J&K was ruled by Hindu ruler and was having varied religious beliefs, ethnicity and culture with Muslim majority. As regards to scares of partition, they are visible everywhere on both sides of the border whether it is Punjab, Bengal, Sindh (Kachh) and J&K is not exception to it. Similarly, after partition the sectarian clashes in Indian side are more in States where mass migration of partition has taken place. However, with the passage of time the fear psychosis in Muslims as to discrimination (being a Hindu majority country) existing at the time of partition continued dipping and at present such fear psychic is a matter of bygone era.
The Muslim population of India is any time more than the entire population of Pakistan. The Muslim majority State of J&K and Union Territory of Lakshadweep are Jewell in our secularism with their diversified ethnicity and culture. The fear psychic in Kashmir valley in the past was compounded, as it was cut off from rest of India in the absence of road/rail link and political interference of our neighboring country. Few separatist leaders, terrorists and across LOC/ Border activities are still trying to play with minds of the people in the name of religion and citing scattered incidences of over reaction by armed forces. The sacred religion of Islam is being used for politicking by such people. The majority of educated youth of valley understand it very well which is also reflected in this poll results. The J&K’s accession to India is in writing, legal, binding and enforceable not only in international law but also on all Indian citizens living in any State/ Union Territory of India including J&K.
To my reading no part of the Constitution of India or laws applicable in IHK is undemocratic or unfavorable for its residents. The residents of J&K have full rights as per the treaty of its accession. As to the ‘right to self-determination’ – will anybody enlighten us about the list of rights which at present are not available to Kashmiri as compared to other citizens of India? And which the Kashmiri want in the name of self-determination? To my opinion in every social set up we sacrifice some of our personal rights for social order. These sacrifices are at all levels i.e. from individual to family, from family to neighborhood, from neighborhood to community and so on. Self determination of all rights to my opinion may lead to Jungle Raj. So please first list the rights desired and see whether such rights are available anywhere else? Similarly, all religions whether it is Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Sikhism or any other are also having some social orders wherein individuals are asked to sacrifice their certain rights. Please also list and analyze the practices prohibited by different religions to understand rights of self determination you lose by adopting a particular religion? In India, we proudly sacrifice our certain rights of self-determination (excluding fundamental rights) to our elected representatives in Indian Parliament which is representative of 1.2 billion citizens (i.e. World’s largest).
I have no hesitation in writing that one of the causes which hampered the growth of J&K is its various commercial and land laws. They are skewed in favour of its permanent residents severely affecting in J&K the prospects of industrialization, trade and employment generation as compared to the States of Himachal Pradesh and Uttaranchal. It is unfortunate that few vested interests in J&K valley are taking advantage of lack of education, lack of employment opportunities and lack enlightenment of youth and are misguiding them. In a free society like India, the need of the hour for all of us is not only read history, but to understand it and take future decisions as to where we have fruits of prosperity. Now the challenge before the secessionist elements in J&K is only to prove their worth in State elections and change undemocratic laws, if there is any, in J&K State list. For them further challenges of suggesting amendments in Indian Constitution come only after that?
As regards to Kashmir issue – Please also enlighten me whether the aspirations of Kashmiri are represented by hooligans on streets or by gun tottering terrorists? It is funny when the people who could not ensure democracy in their own land speak for plebiscite in IHK? Please note that the democratic India is a guiding light for entire world and is being respected like that everywhere. In a free society like India, people very well understand as to where they have the fruits of prosperity and the poll represent this fact.
I believe that free and frank opinions are never biased even if they are emanating from within a country or from across the border. However, it is a collective wisdom of opinions which make governments to think and act. The flow of information will at least help general public on both sides of the border at least in agreeing that we disagree on certain issues.

Posted by SatishChadha | Report as abusive

These are precisely the lines on which New Delhi and Islamabad can or had been working to resolve Kashmir when President Musharraf was in power, according to revelations made by Khursheed Mehmood Kasuri, who was foreign minister under Musharraf. I think both countries should take the poll seriously to find a long lasting solution to the problem.

Posted by Imititaz | Report as abusive

@usha…Yes India lacks again…by comiting grave human rights violations. Inspite of winning hearts of kashmiris they are killing them in fake encounters.

Posted by Imititaz | Report as abusive

This article is clearly biased article. The clear benefits of taking actions based on this article are westerners, who would certainly benefit from creating a havoc and instability in Kashmir, if Kashmir becomes an independent state. Foolish are people who follow these biased and idiotic statistic.

Posted by Harrisons99 | Report as abusive

haleema11:

It may sound harsh but given the reality of the situation and the dirty play by rogue nation Pakistan/terrorists from across the border, Indian Army is killing those who are trying to disturb picnic in Kashmir. I have no idea what is ur nationality but I don’t give a damn.

________________________________________ _____

Rexminor: Could u shed more light on National Army, the examples anywhere in the world and why it would be more useful than the current non-”national” army.

Posted by RajeevK | Report as abusive

@One thing is sure that the Punjabis living in India and Pakistan would rather live together as one nation rather than living with people of different cultures and traditions, namely Pashtoons, Bengalis, Sindhis etc. etc.”
–RExminor

—Well, I am a Punjabi from India. what u said was possible before partition. 62 yrs after partition, these 2 sets of Punjabis have more dissimilarities than similarities. I cannot speak for others but I am just perfectly happy living with Bengalis than with Pakistani Punjabis for all good reasons. I get along well with them but cannot live with them….kind of they can be my guests but not room-mates.

@rather than living with people of different cultures and traditions, namely Pashtoons, Bengalis, Sindhis”
–Living together despite diversity is what India is all about. if what u said is right, then the Indians from different cultures will not get along well with each other. that is hardly true.

Posted by RajeevK | Report as abusive

@ Pakistan—I’m a Hyderabadi(India) and I started appreciating the greatness of my country(india) only after coming to US bcoz As a student i was helped by a Gujarati and a Punjabi family during my stay there and they looked after me just like a family member n d only thing wich bonds us is the word “INDIAN”.As Rajeev mentioned we would prefer to stay with Sindhis,Punjabis or Bengalis rather than even thinking about 2 living wid u guys jus on religious or traditional lines.

Posted by vamsey | Report as abusive

@ “One thing is sure that the Punjabis living in India and Pakistan would rather live together as one nation rather than living with people of different cultures and traditions, namely Pashtoons, Bengalis, Sindhis etc. etc” Rex Minor, not Pakistan

I don’t know where you got this ridiculous idea from but you couldn’t be more wrong on that. Indian punjabis have moved on a long time ago & like other Indians they don’t judge their fellow countrymen by religion, language or caste. It seems to me that you are still veiwing India with a lens of the 50s, 60s & 70s and you seem to have slept through the last 20 years or so. The current generation of Indians, whether Punjabis or Sindhis or even Muslims want absolutely no part of Pakistan or Pakistanis. And this is coming to you from a punjabi.

Posted by Mortal1 | Report as abusive

Dear All …….. My purpose of giving example was just to clarify that for closeness at a far away place, it is the human ethnicity and culture which dominates over one’s personal religious beliefs, if all other factors are equal. The personal biased ness, religious hate or animosity are altogether different factors.
What ever we may say the fact is that “Apno se bechudne ka gam apne he samajh sakte hain”. When we talk of closeness between Indians at far away please we bog down under in national hatred or any other biased ness. In this connection please read the analysis of Rakesh Mani published as Editorial in Pak ‘Daily Times’ at following link:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp  ?page=20105\20\story_20-5-2010_pg3_5

Posted by SatishChadha | Report as abusive

@ajeevK nd vamsey
In my opinion both of you are very noble on the human side. Let me clrify my words further, people of different culture or with different traditions need to integrate with the community of the adopted country. This in my view is missing among the people who migrated from India to the territory allocated to Pakistan.
By the way, anyone migrating to the USA or Canada is in the different ball game. They are still developing Nations, in view of their histopry, continued change of ethnic mix and language. In my opinion this is not a good road model for emerging Nations, having no more indigenous population. The citizens being called, afro american, irish american, hisponic american and so on… No thanks. I hope that your prognosis for India, which you have apparently left, comes true. Though the signs are that a large section of minorities including Kashmiris are preventing the cohesiveness of India.
By nationalisingv the current military structure means that any illegal use of military against civilian citizens would cease. The military commanders would be allowed to refuse the illegal use of military. Today this is not possible either in Indiac orv Pakistan. For simple convenience or practical purpose the military of both countriesv has been kept as a separate class within the country. The use of sikh military agaist the Sikh separist movement and ithe use of Pakistan military against the civilian citizens are the clear examples.
In a democratic country the duty of military are
limited to defend the territorial integrity and not to suppress the political views of the opposition. One cannot keep together the unity of a Nation if certain part of country do not desire to be a part of the wholecountry. The democratic process must allow the people to leave the union if so desired. The military adventure of the USA had a different basis and therefore resulted in the defeat since the southerners divide with the yankees was based on slavery or non slavery.
I sincerely believe that the problems within and outside the country in India and Pakistan are simply due to the colonial structure of the respective military both classifying each other as their sole enemy. Like some one mentioned that D&A of both folks are more or less
similar and the religion divide is simply a diversion.
In fact both militaries have more in common with each other and the British military than one could imagine. Most of the military units are very loyal to their colonial history whech includes the suppression and murder of the Indian citizens. This is a bizarre situation hitherto neglected. In other words you have a large chunk of society who are proud of murdering civilians during the colonial days and a major part of the civilian community proud of becoming independet. Now how do you reconcile this difference within a community?
Have a nice day. Rex Minor

Posted by pakistan | Report as abusive

Given the significance of the 63-year-old dispute over Kashmir – for India, for Pakistan and above all for Kashmiris – it is remarkable how few attempts there have been to test opinion in Kashmir itself about attitudes to key issues in the dispute.

Posted by ajaz123 | Report as abusive

@Rexminor,

You think the Punjabi’s in India want to be with Punjabi’s in Pakistan? what have you been smoking.

The punjabi’s, especially the Sikh community in India and worldwide is one of the most moderate, industrious, hard working and productive communities anywhere in the world, bar none. Especially the punjabi sikh diaspora in Canada and the U.S.

As a hindu punjabi, I for one can truly say that the Indian Sikhs are my family, my brothers and they are the lions of India. Please don’t ever disrespect the Indian Sikhs by lumping them with Pakistani Punjabi Terrorist Thugs, there is night and day difference and the Indian Sikhs have worked hard to redefine themselves to be a truly great moderate and peaceful community that gets along with all peoples.

The simple reasons are hardwork and they didn’t not perseverate over the failings of the Gandhi era, they rose above it, and now you have a Punjabi Sikh prime-minister that is loved, respected and admired by ALL Indians alike.

Sikhs are fiercely loyal to India, despite what mis-informed Pakistani’s might think. Punjabi Sikhs have been the historical liberators of India from Islamic and British oppression and even peacefully challenged backwardness of the Gandhi era and sacrificed themselves and martyred themselves, so ALL Indians can live free of tyranny, Hindus, muslims and Sikhs alike.

With regards to the Sikh separatist movement, that was fueled and funded by Pakistan and most Sikhs did not follow nor believe it, as they were always patriotic Punjabi’s and Patriotic Indians and at the end of the day, the Indian Sikhs never defined themselves within the context of being terrorists.

If you notice those people promoting separatism, often recruit uninformed disenfranchised, uneducated youth and send them to die, rather than do their own dirty work.

Indian Punjabi Sikhs are the best of what India has to offer and it is a good idea if Punjabi’s in Pakistan try to emulate their hardwork.

Sikhs don’t need to rule over Punjab, that is beneath them, the Sikh nation is so much more…it is national and global, it is much bigger than punjab or India itself.

Singh IS King.

Posted by G-W | Report as abusive

@daraindia…how many crimes we prove…ask cbi they proved that your army brutally kiled five innocents in fake encounter in south kashmir and passed them off as militants who killed 35 sikhs. ask military court how many they have proved so far. be realistic and admit that you army os tyrant.

Posted by haleema11 | Report as abusive