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How Mahatma Gandhi Stalled Kashmir’s Independence.

In History, Kashmir, Politics on 25 June, 2006 at 7:12 pm

M. K. Gandhi, pioneer and perfector of Satyagraha – the resistance of tyranny through mass civil disobedience, played a very shadowy role in the politics of Kashmir. He was successful in preventing the Maharaja of Kashmir from declaring independence and thus paved the way for a forceful accession of Kashmir.

The events of the summer of 1947 reveal astonishing facts about Gandhi and thus his role in the present conflict of Kashmir, a conflict that has the potential of sparking a nuclear war between India and Pakistan.

Hari Singh, the Maharaja (King) of Kashmir, loathed the Indian National Congress and wanted to stay independent of both India and Pakistan. He asked for a standstill agreement from India and Pakistan so as to be able to pursue his goal of an independent Kashmir. Pakistan signed the standstill agreement but India did not, giving an indication of India’s intentions on Kashmir.

Nehru acutely aware of these facts wanted to visit Kashmir to be able to pressurize the Maharaja to accede to India. Nehru claimed that he wanted to visit Kashmir to obtain the release of Sheikh Abdullah, who was put under arrest by the Maharaja. However, Joseph Korbel gives us matter for thought:

But, one wonders whether Nehru was interested in Abdullah’s personal welfare – devoid of political implications – at a time when the Subcontinent boiled with insurrection and thousands of people were being killed.

Joseph Korbel, Danger in Kashmir, p. 60

Lord Mountbatten, the Viceroy of India, did not approve of Nehru’s visit and offered to visit himself. He visited Kashmir on 18th June 1947, and stayed there for four days. Lord Mountbatten was unable to have a proper discussion with the Maharaja, as the Maharaja did not wish to be influenced and advised about the fate of his land and people. It is strange that the Dogra King, whose reign was one of the cruelest, did not accede to India immediately, based on his religion, but tried to stay independent. Was this an attempt to give back something good to his people? or were his intentions purely selfish?

Lord Mountbatten’s visit was followed by the visit of Lord Haslings Ismay, who was the Chief of Staff to Lord Mountbatten. Both of these proved an utter failure as far as obtaining a surety from the Maharaja that he would not declare independence. This upset Nehru and he wanted to visit Kashmir himself. Sardar Patel strongly disapproved of this visit but on Nehru’s insistence, he agreed to let Gandhi visit Kashmir, which he thought would be ‘lesser of the two evils.’ Mistrust of Gandhi was already on the rise among the Muslims of India.

As Campbell Johnson noted:

Both Nehru and Gandhi have been very anxious that the maharaja of Kashmir should make no declaration of independence.

Campbell Johnson, Mission with Mountbatten, p. 117

To clear this anxiety Gandhi visited Kashmir by the end of July, 1947. The windows of his car were shattered in Baramullah, where an angry crowd protested his visit. Nevertheless, he was to go ahead and obtain a cure for his and Nehru’s anxiety: a guarantee of Maharaja’s accession to India.

The Times, London, reported:

“… But the Union of India has been taking a lively interest in the subject and indications are that the Hindu Maharaja of Kashmir, Sir Hari Singh, has lately been much influenced by representations made by Gandhi who visited Kashmir three months ago and by other congress leaders.”

The Times, London, October 25th 1947

What exactly did Gandhi tell the Maharaja? We will never know, but the chain of events that followed his visit is an indicator of what must have happened. After his visit, the Prime Minister of Kashmir, Ram Chandar Kak, who had no inclination towards India was replaced by Janak Singh and then by the Indian loyalist, Mehr Chand Mahajan. The British officers in the Kashmir Army and Police were dismissed including the Inspector General of Police and the Chief of the General Staff. Orders for construction of a bridge over the Ravi River, near Pathankot, to allow connectivity between India and Jammu and Kashmir were issued. The road between Jammu and Kathua was improved and a telegraph line was constructed between Jammu and the valley. This was all possible because of assistance from India.

Gandhi obtained the cure for his anxiety, but the people of Kashmir have suffered anxiety ever since. Gandhi, the man of peace, brought misery to the men of Kashmir. It is interesting that after all this lobbying; the Maharaja still did not sign the instrument of accession. The British Historian Alistair Lamb, in his book, falsifies the Indian claim of the signing of the instrument accession by the Maharaja.

  1. Close your eyes and think about it for a while and be honest with yourself and think of that time in history when the Invaders from Iran/Afganistan and inhuman war lords like Auranzeb did mass conversions of Kashmiri Pandits to Muslims . Aren’t you one of those ?
    Kashmir was always a seat of Shavism and rich Hindu heritage.
    No wonder you people support a path of inhumanity and barbarism because it in your blood from those inhuman invaders.

    • Please don’t demean the epitome of non-violence – Mahatma Gandhi. |muted]

      • Koshur Batta, the name is enough to throw light on hardships faced by Kashmiris. These ‘Jai Chands’ always sabotaged Kashmir and have not come to terms with the fact that Budhist King Renchen converted to Islam followed by 96% population of Pandits and Budhists and closure of temples in Kashmir housing images as these images were not needed any more. Mir Syed Ali Hamdani using his spiritual powers travelled from Hamadan in Iraq and performed this outstanding feat. Now because of divine intervention, they paid for their sins and opted out of Kashmir using the services of this devil called Jagmohan. Battas should hunt for Jagmohan and lynch him if they can trace him. Time is not far when we Kashmiris will have him tried for war crimes in International Court of Justice.

  2. Haya Daili Batta Kath boz,

    Invaders from Afganistan were in kashmir for only 2 years, and they were more busy with amassing wealth, than converting people.

    It was Shah-i-Hamdan who brought the message of islam here. May I ask was he an army general. It was you and you forefather who always used to rub your nose and forehead at the shrines of Mokdhoom Sahab, etc.

    And moreover, you, your family and 80 crore hindus in indiai are standing witness that islam was not spread by force though we muslims ruled india for 800 years.

    Did you forget the atrocities of Sikh and Dogra ruler on kashmir. Jamma Masjid was closed for 23 years during Sikh rule.

  3. kashmir:
    So what is the correct history? When was the instrument of accession actually signed?
    I am curious to know why did Pakistan invade Kashmir in 1947? Can you point me to some reading material where I can read about the reasons (political/social) for Pakistan to invade Kashmir?

    BTW, what in you view is the solution to Kashmir problem? Independent Kashmir? Or one that goes either to India or Pakistan?

    • Salam,
      I am a Kashmiri national, and living in Muzaffarabad, the capital of (Azad) Jammu Kashmir. I think Jammu Kashmir should be an independent and secular state. I think it will be the best solution for the peaceful South Asia.
      Muhsen Naseim

  4. PoliteIndian:

    The questions you have asked require an exhaustive answer and can not be explained here. The answer to these queries will be found in some of my posts in the future.

    You ask when was the intrument of accession signed, I ask whether it was actually ever signed at all? Please re-read the last line of this post.

    Pakistan’s ‘Invasion’ has become the most celebrated of all the questions as has the annexation of ‘Junagad ‘ by India. Kashmir is a lot more than that. Kashmir is a lot more than ‘intergral part’ and ‘jugular vein.’ However, as long as people on both sides do not allow their minds to think other than what their government feeds them, we have a long long way to go. Text book history destroys our very essence.

  5. Dear Kashur Batta,

    What happened in Kashmir in 1947 has nothing to do with the Invaders and the spread of Islam in Kashmir. You can re-read Nazim’s comments for the historical aspect of Islam in Kashmir. You comment seems totally inappropriate to the context put forward by the writer here.

    Also, if we are one of those, we still have the Kashmiri blood, which was possibly the Pandit Blood earlier. Changing religion does not in any case change your love for the nation. No Kashmiri Pandit can claim to love or belong to Kashmir more than a Kashmiri Muslim and vice versa.

    You need to see Kashmir Problem outside the sphere of religion.

  6. could you send us some information on mahatma gandhi in Kashmir
    Thanks x

  7. Scarlett & Zeeshan:

    I am sorry I can’t help more than what appears on this blog.

  8. Kashmir:

    Thanks for responding.

    So you think India has been able to fool Pakistan, Kashmir, UN and everyone else with a fake Instrument of Accession? That’s a theory I had not heard before.

    About Pakistan’s invasion: The reason I asked the question was to get some background on the existing conflict.

    However, as long as people on both sides do not allow their minds to think other than what their government feeds them, we have a long long way to go. Text book history destroys our very essence.

    You are right about this. But then generally people cannot be expected to invest a lot of time and research to find out other information that the government does not feed them. It is possible only for someone doing a research on the issue, or someone actively involved with the cause to gather that kind of material.

    With the Internet I think it is becoming easier and difficult at the same time. Now we have access to the other side story as well but then there are too many versions. It does get difficult to fathom the truth out of a plethora of information.

    I think there is a need to find a solution. Whatever that may be but a solution is needed. This kiling of innocent people cannot go on forever. Some people are just stuck in the past. What we need to do is take our lessons from the past and move on.

    It is about time Kashmir was turned back into the heaven that it has been quoted time and again.

    Will look forward to your posts that outline a solution for the Kashmir problem.

    • I do not understand why The great People of Jammu & kashmir do not use their brain to join with India so that they can more develop more as We Indian people treat them as the crown of Our mother India why they want to become the shoe dust of Pakistan.Day will when Allha will compell the Pakistan to become a Part of india.Do you think The Pakistan can servive without the help of Foreign Powers

  9. Do you dispute that the 1948 invasion from Pakistan is what led to the Maharaja of Kashmir acceding to India? If yes, would really like to hear your version.

    From the conclusion of your post, the salient points I can see post Gandhi-visit are, the colonial influence of the British was taken away, Kashmir’s infrastructure improved thanks to assistance from India and the Maharaja did not sign any instrument of accession.

    I do not find any reasoning behind drastic statements like:
    ‘Nevertheless, he was to go ahead and obtain a cure for his and Nehru’s anxiety: a guarantee of Maharaja’s accession to India.’ (The newspaper quote you provide makes absolutely no mention of any guarentees)

    and

    ‘Gandhi, the man of peace, brought misery to the men of Kashmir.’

    How?

  10. Kaustav:

    Kashmir was not a part of India, it was none of it’s headache. Why did India want to ‘take away’ colonial influence from Kashmir when India itself was a colony of the British at that time and had a British Governor General even after its independence.

    A bridge over Ravi near Pathankot, improvement of road connectivity between Jammu and Kathua and laying of telegraph lines don’t exactly spell Infrastructure improvement for Kashmir and who gave India the rights to meddle with an independent Kingdom?

    I would urge you to reread the post.

  11. Kashmir was not part of Pakistan either so was the determination to be made by Kashmiri’s or the Tribals of NWFP. Was it tribal determination? And what answer was given to those raiders by people of valley themselves. Second Pakistan had made an attempt to take away this independence by proclaiming a govt on 1/10/1947 and tribal raid was a follow up only. And how the Northern Ares were taken by Pakistan under Karachi agreement by the leaders of the Muslim conference under Karachi pact, who gave them this right. Muslim league did not have even the chapter in Gilgit and Baltistan?

    If standstill agreement was in place why was it broken by the Pakistani who entered Kashmir on 22/10/1947 and its independence was torn to pieces? It was Pakistani raid that gave invitation to so many counter actions and Hari Singh signed the instrument of accession. Maharaja was not expected to fall on the feet of raiders and tell take Kashmir? Why did they burn the Mohra Power House, infrastructure that was built by Kashmir Govt of the time- second power station of South East Asia after the one built in Mysore. and they did strangulate that Kashmir of supplies and at that tine salt became a scarce commodity in J&K and it was sold that sky-rocket prices. The fact is Pakistan has told one million lies in the process, and the right thing would have been to search the solution after sitting with the NC largest political party of the time in the valley.

  12. All unrelated comments have been deleted. 

    Abhishek:

    I had allowed your first comment so as to give you a chance to answer mirnazim, however it appears that you are determined to continue with the Hindu-Muslim debate, which is not the topic of this post, rather far from it. Your comments have been deleted as they are inappropriate to the post topic.

    P.K. Gupta

    Both India and Pakistan aggressors. The aggression by Pakistani Tribals gave India no right to pitch their tents forever in Kashmir!

    The British Historian Alistair Lamb, in his book, falsifies the Indian claim of the signing of the instrument accession by the Maharaja.

    There is a big question mark on the credibility of the Instrument of Accession, if at all it exists.

    India was never a signatory to the Standstill Agreement.

    The events of October 1947 require an exhaustive answer and I hope to answer the queries raised by you and others on this post some day soon.

  13. Mr. Kashmir please do come prepared to discuss the issue and not with a lie here and there.

    The first canard in you argument is that that Instrument of accession does not exist. It is available on net on the ministry of Home site and link is http://mha.nic.in/accdoc.htm, this falicifies the very basis of your argument.

    Second for Mr. Lamb, first of all he is not a historian he is a student of law who has wrote his thesis. The references given by him in thesis has been torn apart by none other than the Son Of Jammu & Kashmir, Justice A.S.Anand who was chief justice of the J&K high court and later the Chief justice of India, the very dates that Mr. Lamb has mentioned are wrong as per the testimonials of the time. Second Dr. Karan Singh has testified the various dates who was an eye-witness than Mr. Lamb who was away in London. Accession of Kashmir to India was not disputed by even UN and if it had been so then they would not have allowed India to keep its forces on the soil of J&K, they allowed India and asked Pakistan to get out.

    Third as you may be aware at the time of the independence the Governor General of India was British, he was appointed under section 5 of the Act of Independence of British Parliament and not of India. The chief of staff of the armed forces was Gen Lockhart also the British. Mountbatten had not allowed the dispatch of troops unless and until the Instrument of accession was signed by Hari Singh. So if anybody has lied it is Pakistan because UK Law enforcers would have objected. In fact the thesis of Mr. Lamb is more referred to by the Pakistan supporters without giving reference to ground situation at that point of time.

    Accordingly, to that letter of his of October 26, the Maharaja attached the Instrument of Accession for acceptance. In his letter Mountbatten wrote, ” … my government has decided to accept the accession of Kashmir state to the dominion of India. In consistence with their policy that in the case of any state where the issue of accession has been the subject of dispute, the question of accession should be decided in accordance with the wishes of the people of the state, it is my government’s wish, that, as soon as law and order have been restored in Kashmir and its soil cleared of the invader, the question of the state’s accession should be settled by a reference to the people. So if there is no instrument of accession then there is no wish of Plebiscite also by your argument that in itself is canard.

    What Mountbatten is saying is a wish not a constitutional guarantee, and in the instrument itself the link of which is given above no conditional acceptance was made.

    Third you are correct India did not sign the standstill agreement to break it, Pakistan had signed it but what did they do with it.

    And the basis of the argument in your blog was that independence was shelved because the PM R.C.Kak was removed, it is childish on your part, because you are seeing the situation in isolation. The independence was already in the danger because Pakistan had started the process and declared a provisional government on 4/10/2006 and their regulars and irregulars invaded J&K on 22/10/2006 and it was on this basis is they said that tribal raid is an internal uprising. Lies as is the practice with Pakistan it was later accepted by them that their forces are in J&K.

  14. P. K. Gupta:

    The post is about M. K. Gandhi and his role in the events and not about all the events that led to the ‘alleged’ accession. I have only quoted facts about the role of M. K. Gandhi.

    Briefly:

    The physical document has never been produced even in the United Nations. I could scan up a piece of paper and claim it to be a letter from the Maharaja ‘falsifying’ the Indian claim. Ministry of Home Affairs claims that Kashmir is an integral part of India, even though the entire world considers it to be a disputed territory. Next time quote a neutral source, not a biased one.

    Justice A.S.Anand tearing apart a book conveys utter frustration of a person. Karan Sing was a scared kid at that time. I wonder why UN still considers Kashmir as disputed, maintains a observer group in Kashmir and has passed resolutions demanding a ‘plebiscite’ in Kashmir. And do you actually think that all historians who wrote books were at the spot taking notes as events took place?

    ‘It is hard to imagine why Mountbatten attached such importance to immediate accession.’

    Ziegler, Mountbatten, p 446

    It is questionable why India did not rush in aid, if that was it’s intention, as a friendly neighbour? Do all countries accede to another country if they ask for military aid.

    ‘By exaggerated legalism the Governor-General helped bring about the result he most feared: the protracted occupation of Kashmir by India with no attempt to show that it enjoyed popular support.’

    Ziegler, Mountbatten, p 446

    Nehru promised plebiscite, not on one occasion but on many others, as you must be aware of.

    Pakistan has always claimed that it were the triblas who invaded the valley and since these tribals busied themselves in looting the town of Baramulah, it is obvious that they were not a well commanded regular army.

    Please read the post carefully, the argument is about the role of Gandhi in obstructing Kashmir’s independence. Gandhi’s visit was in July 1947, much before the declaration of a provisional government by Kashmiris in what is now Azad Kashmir (PaK). R. C. Kak’s removal was one of the changes that Ghandi’s visit led to.

  15. Mr. Kashmir you are giving the logic for the sake of logic and with prejudice but actual facts on the ground do not support your argument.

    You said the post is about M. K. Gandhi and his role in the events and not about all the events that led to ‘alleged’ accession. I have only quoted facts about the role of M. K. Gandhi. The answer is after the change of PM the Maharaja did not make the decision to accede to India and the decision was to be made by Maharaja and not R.C. Kak,. The decision was brought about by the invasion by pakistan in the form of regular and irregular troops.
    Then you say the physical document has never been produced even in the United Nations. This is lie. How UN admitted the case of India it was India that went to UN and not Pakistan. How it passed the resolutions and why did it allow India maintain its army as is eveident in its resolutions. The fact is accession to India was not challenged even by UN.

    Then you say Next time quote a neutral source this is total frustation because the Instrument was to be submitted by Hari Singh to India or Pakistan not to a neutral source so it will be with India only not with UN or UK. And you say then one which is on website is not real that is simply your imagination. On which grounds it is not be believed ? Because Pakistan tells It?

    And to add to this Hari Singh died in 1950 in Mumbai and in your words wothout signing the instrument and lived in India. Indian Establishment in your opinion was so fool.

    You say Justice A.S.Anand tearing apart a book conveys utter frustration of a person, you are wrong he did not tear it apart it tore apart its logic because the circumstantial evidence that Mr Lamb had quoted was wrong, basic date of 26/10/1947 that Mr Lamb has conveyed that Maharaja was in Kashmir is wrong he was in Jammu and had left valley on 25/10/1947 at 2 pm after valley had plunged in darkness when Mohra power house was destroyed two days before. Had he remained in valley his scurity was at risk.

    Karan Sing was a scared kid at that time, scared by what, tribesman ? He was not a kid , he was appointed as the Sader-i-Riyasat in 1950.

    You wonder why UN still considers Kashmir as disputed it is because Pakistan had to vacate its occupied portion and then plebicite was to be done. Pakistan did not fufill its commmittment at all and resolutions are on paper. Second you must also be aware there is also a Resolution of Assurance passed by UN security council under which If Pakistan did not fulfiil its part India has no liability to fufill is commitment. UN maintained a observer group in Kashmir for cease fire voilations. And you ask all historians who wrote books were not at the spot taking notes as events took place? No they are not but one historian cannot be treated as sacronast, his views are challenged by other.

    Then you say It is questionable why India did not rush in aid, if that was it’s intention, as a friendly neighbour? What aid? You yourself have admitted the type of situation that was done in Baramullah, how the nurses of local Missionary hospital were raped, how Pandits were hanged on the electric pole? You ask do all countries accede to another country if they ask for military aid. The answer is that paramountancy of Pricely sattes had ended and the forces could not land without instrument, it would have been aggression. This I have already said in my last post.

    Nehru did promise plebiscite, he expressed a will and the policy and if Pakistan did not fulfill its part it could not be achieved, and this was conveyed to UN from 1947 to 1957 by the Indain UN representative as you must be aware.

    Then you say Pakistan has always claimed that it were the triblas who invaded the valley. In the first place why and how come it sent its army in, which is there in occupation since 1947. Then you assume that Indains will accept this plain liogic. By your admission these tribals busied themselves in looting the town of Baramulah, killing innocent people why? Then you conclude it is obvious that they were not a well commanded regular army. The truth is that pint is that it was more than 10000 armed tribesmen under Maj. Gen. Akbar Khan (under the name of General Tariq) that occupied Muzaffarabad and Domel. Their onward march was halted for two days by the valiant Brig. Rajinder Singh. If you read the accounts of the attack on air-port it was well trained personnel.

    Then you say please read the post carefully, the argument is about the role of Gandhi in obstructing Kashmir’s independence. Gandhi’s visit was in July 1947, much before the declaration of a provisional government by Kashmiris in what is now Azad Kashmir (PaK). R. C. Kak’s removal was one of the changes that Ghandi’s visit led to.

    First the so-called Govt that was declared by Muslim conference who had no mandate in kashmir at that point of time with Chaudhry Abas who has restarted muslim conference in 1940 with active support of muslim leauge. So it was a subversion and it was manovered more on 24/10/2005 when it was replced by more pro-pakistan men but the agony is that the valley was not even aware of it, they did not even knew these people. Second because the Sheikh Abdullah was in jail and RC Kak was not keen to free him and it was impressed upon the Maharaja that a more democratic step by Ghandhi.

  16. Mr. Kashmir those who doubt the existence of Instrument of Accession why are they wasting time? Why they do not file case in ICJ Or the UN Security Council if the allegation is so strong? The things would have got sorted out? Otherwise this appears to be Propaganda only !

  17. Mir Nazim, Unfortunately we have a communal problem in India since most of the Indian muslims have narrow brains like you. Learn to be communally secular like Zafarshan. Let me drill some logic in your brain. Firstly, most of the Indian & Pakistani Muslims (including you) are the descendants of Hindu Indians. Most lower castes Hindus were forcibly converted or brainwashed to accepting Islam and a very few section of upper caste Hindus willingly accepted Islam for their own materialistic gains or coz they truly revered Islamic principles under the reign of the Mughal kings. Mughals by the way were foreign Muslims from Mongolia and Central Asia (Kirghizistan/ Tajikistan) and have nothing to do with present Indian Muslims. So never ever say that your ancestors (Indian Muslims) ruled over Hindus for 800 years. If you say our Hindu forefathers rubbed their forehead on some Muslim priest shrine, it just shows the greatness and broad based principles of Hinduism that doesnt restrict any Hindu to accept the greatness of another religion at par with his own. It is just because of myopic Muslims like you India still lives in a communally susceptible environment.

    The solution to Kashmir is and will always remain a free, just elections where the Hindu, Muslim & Buddhist residents of Jammu & Kashmir (not Ladakh. They never had a problem) are asked to excercise their choice of liberation, accession to India or accession to Pakistan. If the results tilt in one of the last 2 options, the other country should willingly accept the public opinion and stopp butting their nose in Kashmir’s affairs regardless of what happens after accession.

    If Kashmiris vote for self rule (independence), the country should be declared a neutral demelitarized zone. Only a small team of UN observers may be kept in Kashmir for a term of 10 years. India and Pakistan should not be permitted to “interfere” in Kashmir’s daily afairs barring economic, trade and industrial co-operation. After 10 years, the security of Kashmir should be divided between India and Pakistan so that both countries are equally responsible for the internal stability of Kashmir and its external affairs.

  18. India Awakes

    There are a lot of possible solutions to the Kashmir problem, as is the one you propose, but which governments will be brave enough to implement one of those is to be seen.

  19. Why the heck would anyone want to know so much about Gandhi?

  20. […] You may also want to read How Mahatma Gandhi Stalled Kashmir’s Independence. […]

  21. Those who believe in violence have always found a villain in Gandhi. It is hardly a coincidence that you also find him so.

  22. Abhilash

    Ignoring the facts and realities is just how a majority of Indians live as far as Kashmir is concerned, so it is no coincidence either that you think and act likewise. What I have provided is ample proof to suggest what it does suggest.

    Have a look at this, this and this post and then maybe you should be able to judge the perpetrators of violence in Kashmir or if you believe that the Indian armed forces are out there cleaning the world of Islamic Zealots, then there is not much I can say. I would also like you to condemn “violations of human rights in most unequivocal terms,” which even though you say should be done you haven’t done so yourself.

  23. K:

    Short of publishing a stamped apology in all newspapers, I have done everything to declare that I condemn ALL violence. Unfortunately, you are unable to read it.

  24. Abhilash:

    Not being sarcastic here but I would really want to read your personal opinions on the posts I referred to and then you may also realise that those who see a hero in Gandhi still believe in violence not just otherwise.

    And just because Gandhi was the father of nation does not make him an angel, he did do wrong to Kashmir, a wrong that has made me and millions of other Kashmiris suffer every single day under the gaze of 0.7 million gun totting troops. His actions were just a start of how India was to behave till 1987 and beyond and has had a greater consequence than the formation of Hizbul Mujahideen by Salah-ud-Din – an outcome of the massively rigged 1987 elections, which Sala-ud-Din had contested.

  25. Actually, the blame of the present condition in Kashmir should be laid at the feet of Gandhi’s parents who decided to have him. If they hadn’t decided to have Gandhi, there wouldn’t be no Gandhi, ergo, no Gandhi interference in Kashmir, ergo no present mess.

    Even if for the sake of discussion, we assume for a moment that what Gandhi did in Kashmir is the only reason for current situation, I don’t think logic dictates that we throw away all his teachings of non-violence and non-cooperation – that are still relevant (maybe more so) in today’s world. Look at what MLK and Mandela achieved using the same methods. Gandhi was a human being and probably made mistakes.

    Let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater.

    I’ve been exploring some Indian blogs lately, and I seem to come across a lot of thinking that x (Gandhi, Indira, BJP, Hindus, Muslims etc. etc.) did this thing wrong, so x is wrong on all accounts.

    Maybe start with the premise that we all are humans and some of what we do is right and some wrong and no one has the answer that will solve our problems, and start evaluating people based on their acts instead of what they did in the past. Sure, if there is a very strong pattern for someone making wrong decisions all the time, then it is difficult to believe them when they do make a right decision, and easy to dismiss them. I don’t think Gandhi qualifies under that, at least from what I’ve read about him.

    Cheers,
    -Amit

  26. Amit,

    Though I do agree with your thoughts that just one action of a person doesn’t make a person wrong. But, for a moment, just consider this – if Gandhi actually did play an active role in subverting our independence (remember it was not out of a religious reasons) then the a fair share of the blame can be put at his door. Isn’t it?

    Juz A Kashmiri

  27. JAK,

    If there is incontrovertible proof (instead of conjecture) that Gandhi and just Gandhi’s actions were the sole reason for the mess, and majority of historians and scholars agree with it, sure, I have no problem laying the fair share of blame at his feet. I do not subscribe to the view that he was perfect and did nothing wrong.

    But I still wonder how does laying the blame at Gandhi’s feet (who died in 1948) help us solve this complex problem today. There have been many mistakes made by others since his death. For every finger-pointing one side does, the other side does the same, and it goes on and on – no end to that. Also, we have the luxury of hindsight of 50+ years which Gandhi probably didn’t have when he made certain decisions.

  28. Amit,

    I am not here to comment on how Gandhi was. In his personal life, he was not known to be the most ideal soul, but that too is immaterial. When our friend K raises this issue by means of a post on his blog, the idea is to make other fellow Kashmiris (and non-Kashmiris) aware how we have been conspired against. Even by those, who were known to be the torch-bearers of freedom and non-violence. So blaming (or not blaming) him would not help us but atleast we need to know how we have been wronged.

    You talk about incontrovertible proof. Even if that does surface, will that change the scene? You surely know the answer.

    Juz A Kashmiri

  29. Juz a Kasmiri :

    you cannot make comment like

    “how Gandhi was. In his personal life, he was not known to be the most ideal soul, but that too is immaterial. “

    without stating the facts on which you base this comment.

    Otherwise it only seems like a cunning attempt to win an argument by loosely floating such comments hoping that you can malign a great soul like mahatma gandhi just because what he stood for is not favouring you.

  30. Hello everyone:

    Could anyone help me to find a photograph of RC Kak. I like him and have yet to see a Kashmiri nationalist that he was. Regarding Kashmir take it from me that the time has come for falsehood to perish and for truth to prevail. Thousands of people laid their lives and trust me it won’t go waste.

    Greeting to you all out there in India who hardly know the background history of Kashmir and the way their successive governments kept them in dark since 1947. We in Kashmir love India and the majority Hindu non-violent community. Bless you all. Thanks.

  31. Shame on you for editing the text of my message. This is what you kashmiri pandits have done all along your life. You always wanted to promote the lies of kalhana.

  32. Further to my previous post I would like to add that the only solution visible or practical is an independent Kashmir. If India and Pakistan have to progress and survive they must leave Kashmir and even help us to get back the area occupied by China. We in Kashmir whether muslims, pundits, budhists or Dogras have always been one nation and can again survive as a nation like before, even when Indian subcontinent was enslaved by British.

  33. […] is a totally simplistic depiction of a critical historical event, a lot more happened preceding the Mahraja’s alleged accession to India and thereafter. and recommended a referendum to […]

  34. Hi Mr. Kashmir,

    I read your side of the story and all the following comments. I believe myself to be a humanitarian first and no religious or national identity matters to me.

    If I look at present day Kashmir situation, then I am forced to say that it has become a communal issue. It’s at present a fight between Islam and Hinduism. Why I am saying so? Because, no group talks about so called Azad Kashmir, I don’t hear any Kashmiri groups carrying out any rallies or protest shows against Pakistani occupation or bombing and killing the innocents in various Indian cities. Is that because India represents Hinduism and Pakistan represents Islam.

    As far as the past is concerned I think Mr. P.K Gupta has a point as far as your bias is concerned because you are choosing to believe one set of historian over others.
    Lastly, Gandhi’s role is something you and I cannot comment upon because we were not there and there no documentation exists supporting your claim that Hair Singh made his decision because of Gandhi’s visit.

    So please get creative and do some soul searching and look for practical solution…which I believe is by accepting the present day LOC as final.

  35. […] of India. The blood of Kashmiri people keeps safe the so-called integrity of the India, the largest Daemon-cracy of the World. The BLind INdian meDIA (Blindia) has always seen, heard and reported the plight of […]

  36. This entire discussion is based on Kashmiris trying to find Freedom or Azadi. This is a classic case of damage that a `self-centered leadership and intelligentia have perpetuated on simple good-minded kashmiri populace at a heavy cost to humanity. An average kashmiri on the street has suffered more for this cause and the entire sub-continent has paid heavily for this idea of Azadi. What is Azadi? Ask a kashmiri and the first answer is plebesite. If you follow up you realize that he does not want to go to Pakistan. So for a kashmiri Azadi is absolute freedom for J&K to do anything without any considerations for his neighbors and surely not even for those living alongside. This Grand idea of Azadi is so absurd and impractical that its crazy even to believe it but this idea has been used by the local politicians to control minds of an average kashmiri for the last over 60 yrs. The example of Afganistan & Bangladesh and even 1947 clearly proved that Kashmir couldn’t survive as an independent nation on its own. The India Independence act of the British Parliament had no provision for azadi for Kashmir and neither India nor Pakistan wish to cede any further territory. If despite 1965 & 71 and Kargil this is not clear to the so called intelligential in Kashmir it is either because of their arrogance or greed or to have unfettered right to rule or misrule J&K with complete right over the destiny of its inhabitants. The other interested party is the fanatics who wish to convert Kashmir into a Islamic state. This other group has now created a severe reaction in Jammu. The real reason of the turmoil in parts of J&K is about insensitivity of Kasmiri Politicians who have no respect to leave space for the Buddhist & Hindus living alongside.

    Wake up Kashmiris this is a world of interdependence not independence. In your quest for this mirage do become so self-centered and loose your tolerance for other non-Muslims living in your community. The Pundits have migrated and now you have problems with Jammuites and Ladakhis. Freedom is now beginning to sound more like intolerance. Kashmiris quest for independence seems more like a desire not to accommodate with other or may we dare to call it intolerance. But slowly and surely it is destroying Kashmiri heritage of tolerence and soon we shall be left with only hard-core wahabi fanatics in this grand dream or may I say a nightmare.

  37. Dear Kashmiris,

    Being an Indian I do apologise for the frustrating situation made by the history and I hope some day you will be free of all the suffocation. But before that happens you give some idea about the incidence occurring in India:

    Last week the flag of India was burnt in Kashmir and at the same time Pakistan’s flag was hoisted! What dose it mean? Independence from India and dependence on Pakistan? If it is true, I suggest you that you are quite comfortable in India.

    And I will let you know that recently I have seen in many blogs from my Muslim cousins that they will [hoist a] flag on Red Fort followed by Kashmir. What dose it mean? And what flag it is…!

    My dears, this is the India where on August 15th flag is hoisted on Red Fort neither at Gate Way of India nor at Parliament (by PM). Every Muslim should be proud to have such honour to Red Fort.
    At the time of partition Pakistan is declared as Islamic Nation and India as Secular, this is what the policy makers mind by that time. By this you can simply analyze who is what, rather than digging the history, now let us move forward with optimistic view to solve the Kashmir controversy.

    Why the situation in Kashmir was became horrible in a fortnight? Simply because the land was given to a religious board! If there is that religion that should posses some land nothing is wrong in that. I remember you there are is plenty of land given to Muslim community else where in India no other religion objected for that. Then how can you?

    We Indians don’t bring the land out of Kashmir…then what is your worry..?

    Yes I do say, your situation made you so narrow that you don’t want to come out and free yourself.

    That is where you feel dependent and seek independence…

    INDEPENDENCE FROM WHAT?

  38. Aam Aadimi:

    Last week the flag of India was burnt in Kashmir and at the same time Pakistan’s flag was hoisted! What dose it mean? Independence from India and dependence on Pakistan? If it is true, I suggest you that you are quite comfortable in India.

    It is wrong to see every green flag as a Pakistani flag. Green, the crescent and the star are a symbolic representation of Muslims. Whether Kashmiris want to depend on Pakistan or not should be their say, let India not think about that. And a majority of Kashmiris are are Independence for Kashmir. How we will survive? Let ‘Us’ think about that.

    My dears, this is the India where on August 15th flag is hoisted on Red Fort neither at Gate Way of India nor at Parliament (by PM). Every Muslim should be proud to have such honour to Red Fort.

    And I guess Muslims of India should be proud of Babri Masjid and Gujrat as well!

    Why the situation in Kashmir was became horrible in a fortnight? Simply because the land was given to a religious board! If there is that religion that should posses some land nothing is wrong in that. I remember you there are is plenty of land given to Muslim community else where in India no other religion objected for that. Then how can you?

    It wasn’t the land, please go through the post Kashmir Strikes Back

    INDEPENDENCE FROM WHAT?

    INDIA

  39. hi all ,

    First of all, this whole ‘Ajadi’ concept is wrong whether it is for Kashmir or for any land.

    In any rule of land if people live with prosperity,happiness and grow well then if someone wants ‘Ajadi’ then it is only a sheer lust of power and only an aggression towards a good rule.Anywhere in the world including India freedom struggle started only when people were being exploited and despite all efforts rulers are not changing the situation and considering land ruled by them as foreign land.

    Depending upon time and regional rulers, the political structure of Indian subcontinent kept changing.Moreover always over a span of time , new countries are being created and demolished in the world.e.g. USA created and some countries of Europe does not exist.This is the truth of time and no one can change that.So, if some people want individual recognisation as a country for a piece of land they live on, is nor their birth right and neither can be assured ,and piece of land of Kashmir (I mean only valley part as they only want this, other don’t have any problem) is not an exception.

    This whole country creation and demolition usually depends on power and strategic equilibrium.

    Personally for me this whole subcontinent is India ,not as we today know about.This Pakistan and Bangladesh was created by fanatic people on the basis of religion and I wish if they will be merged again in remaining India to make it complete by whatever means in future.So there is no question of Kashmir land piece pseudoindependence cry.

    It is people nature to be selfish,first they will fight for country division,then regional,then religion, then cast, then village, then house; apart from division of language, life style, etc. If we start granting independence to people then they will ultimately proclaim their houseland or community land as a independent country.

    Moreover, It is very wrong to different countries to be exist in the world, rather whole world should come under one rule.Nationalism is a racism at larger scale. Mankind should work collectively for well being of mankind.

    Therefore wanting separate country is baseless.

    Those who cry foul of people being killed in Kashmir, or in riots should note that other people are also getting killed in one or other mishappening in India and other part of world, they are not the only special case. Don’t form this as a basis for blackmailing some rule.

    I wish to write much more against Separatist posts but time is short.

    For me Kashmir solution is as follows:

    Separate country demand is baseless, history have seen many country being created and demolished.

    So, Plebisite thing is also irrelevant (not only in the context of above sentence but also owing to many demographic changes).One should understand that if Kashmir goes in the hand of Pak then Pak border is easily accessible with China, and I hope Indian govt’. is not a fool to do such strategic mistake.

    As a Kishmiri what one should demand is equal facility as par any other Indian citizen to grow (if at all such thing exists) after revoking special status and cooperate against any Pak sponsored terrorism. I think all that you want is to live happily and prosper.For that I am in support of any Kashmiri.

    Thanks.

  40. Hey Vasudeo ,

    Sorry to say this but your understanding of Kashmir is very very ordinary indeed…making plebiscite irrelevant and terming Kashmiris as racist is rather an evidence to your ignorance, narrow mindedness and jingoism or like most people you are a victim of misinformation campaign that India has been taking on…sadly you are historically so incorrect, better spend some more time on desk!

    This aside, we Kashmiris are hopeful that truth will prevail however you people malign and misrepresent the struggle…

  41. Indeed the role of Ghandhi is very suspicious.My late grand father also told me the same thing which you have mentioned in your post. Ghandi asked Hari Singh to release Abdullah and remove Ram Kak P.M. of Kashmir from his post. Ram Kak wanted Kashmir to remain Independent.

  42. Vasudeo:

    Ajadi is spelled Azadi. Kishmiri is spelled Kashmiri. Please get the spellings right before you dole out advice for Kashmiris.

    Dr. Waleed

    A understanding of Kashmir’s history would give us greater insights into how we reached the current day. Alas, even our own leaders failed to present history as it should have been. A thorough study and short guides on Kashmir history are essential.

  43. @ Mir

    Your doubts will clear your mind and heart.

    You are hard-liner you and other brothers they have talked about “Makdoom Shahib” whom we respect more than you even living in exile don’t use such abusive language it hearts the sentiment who believe in saints-sufis.

    KP

  44. Gandhi was not a superman. He was an ordinary man. An extremely ordinary man. Did such a man give advise to Hari Singh? And was Hari Singh waiting for such an advise? I doubt these conjectures. Gandhi went anywhere he felt like. When India became Independent he was in Naokholi village in Bangladesh where he was acting intensely against violence. I don’t think some big man was waiting for his advise in Naokholi.

  45. KS:

    Gandhi seemed simple, but was not. A simple man can not fight an empire, he did and in the process put people like us on a destiny of misery. Hari Singh was not waiting for his advise, he was given an order. Perhaps since no great man was waiting for his advise in Naokholi, that might answer why he was there when India became independent.

  46. It seems K lived during Gandhi’s era and knows everything. Great.

  47. Yup, so Mahatma Gandhi was an “evil” person. Your leaders like Maulana Masood Azar (Red corner notice holder by Interpol), Hafiz Mohammad Syed (One of the most wanted Terrorist internationally) are (hold your breath) “Freedom Fighters!!”.

    You know, I saw that coming on this “Propaganda” blog. I just imagine how you people even face yourself in the mirror. Is this what Islam teaches?

  48. Why was Abdulla arrested in first place..

  49. I liked. Also liked the comment thread which looks civil for the most part.

  50. A very fascinating and well written article. Thank you, it has aided my understanding of post partition Kashmir. I have always been a supporter of Kashmiri Independence. Keep up the good work!

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