The organized reaction of Kashmiri nationalist and other leadership towards the delusional autonomy package for Gilgit – Baltistan shall be taken as an eye – opener by people of the region. Those who don’t tire telling us about our so – called historical links with Kashmir, and our “cultural ties”, shall be asked to either get out of the region’s political arena, or to update their knowledge of the Kashmiris’ aspirations towards our region.
For the Kashmiris our region, and we, people of the region, are nothing but a tool that they want to use when the time is ripe for their “independence”.
It was interesting to watch Sardar Attique tell an anchorperson on a popular TV channel that the people of Gilgit – Baltistan are die – hard fans of Kashmiri nationalist parties. When the anchorperson asked him the reasons why Kashmir’s many parties didn’t contest in the region’s recently held elections, he said that the government of Pakistan doesn’t allow the Kashmiri parties to operate in the region.
We all know that it is a white lie. The JKLF has a secretariat in Gilgit city, but despite of operating in the region for many years, the party has not been able to even inspire a handful of people.
Aman Ullah Khan, born in the Astore district of Gilgit – Baltistan, is a non – entity in the political arena of Gilgit – Baltistan, despite of being among the founders of JKLF. Recently while talking to a news blog, Nazir Sabir said that Aman Ullah Khan is a traitor of Gilgit – Baltistan and he would even not find burial place in the region.
The reasons of disinterest in Kashmiri politics are many, including the fact that people of Gilgit – Baltistan are not Kashmiris. Their culture, their land, their history and their aspirations are completely different. The only “historical” connection between GB and Kashmir is the illegal occupation of some parts of GB by the Britishers and the Maharaja of Kashmir, for a short while.
Moreover, our ancestors would never have fought against the Maharaja of Kashmir, had there been any historical affinity between the two regions. Our region had been independent and the Kashmiris were able to rule it after the British forces occupied the region’s many states, in fiercely fought wars.
Keeping the people of Gilgit – Baltistan in eternal uncertainty, or declaring GB as part of Kashmir, as the prime minister did recently, is an outright negation of historical realities, as well as complete violation of basic human right of self determination. The state of Pakistan is guilty of conspiring against our identity and the vultures of Kashmir, the colonized dreamers, are guilty of conspiring against our existence and history.
It is for the people of Gilgit – Baltistan, especially the youth, to raise voice against the forces that find it befitting to keep our fate in a state of limbo. The vultures of Kashmir have exposed their evil designs, not once or twice, but many times. We need to look out for the vultures and let them know that people of Gilgit – Baltistan are not dead, or ready to be savored.