Muhammad Ali Baig
FOREIGN policy can be defined as the resistance offered by a state to the pressure coming from the international system. An efficient and pragmatic foreign policy of a state is the definitive bludgeon to secure international objectives and policy goals. Quite often, the foreign policy itself of a state depending upon the decision-makers significantly helps state in securing domestic as well as international objectives. Pak Foreign Policy has always been dominated by its leaders and they have decisively shaped their external relations overshadowed by their personality and motivation.
It is a reality that Kashmir and Khalistan movements are the matter of international concern, since oppressed Muslims of Kashmir and suppressed Sikhs of India demand independence from Hindu-dominated India. Independence movements in Kashmir and Khalistan are the result of Hindu orchestrated and state-sponsored terrorism. The right of self-determination was envisioned in the UN Charter in 1945, and it clearly gives the right of independence to Kashmiri Muslims and Sikhs of India.
The Kashmiri Muslims made their choice to join Pakistan at the time of partition in 1947, but were deprived of their will and freedom by India. India has been a historic usurper and a violent power when it comes to human rights and the rights of minorities. It is not a surprise that Indian leadership is in a continuous control of extremist Hindu organizations that are ruthlessly pursuing their objective of “Hindutva” and “Akhand-Bharat” (Greater India). The so-called Indian secular state is overshadowed by the existence of several extreme right-wing organisations. Operation Bluestar in 1984 was not aimed to remove alleged militants from Golden Temple but it was focused to fake Sikh identity and religion. It reflects Indian Hindu-mind that Indian Army’s Major General Shabeg Singh, who played a significant role in training “Mukti Bahni” to fight Pakistan, was killed along with Jarnail Singh Bhindrawale, for raising voice in favour of Sikh rights and freedom. The assassination of PM Indira Gandhi by her two Sikh guards was neither an individual nor an act of terrorism but it reflected the earnest desire of Sikhs to liberate themselves from clutches of extremist Hindus.
It is imperative for Pakistan to enhance its support for the troubled and distressed Sikhs of India who enjoy more religious liberty in Islamic Pakistan as compared to so-called secular India. The actions of Pakistan regarding Sikhs of India and Muslims of Kashmir have moral and ethical foundations and the abuse of human rights give Pakistan a just reason to help Indian Sikhs and Muslims. Sikh people made enormous struggle for India and it is on record that many soldiers in Indian Armed Forces come from Sikh families. But it is quite strange that they are still treated as second class citizen in all of India. Sikhs are a distinct nation by every definition of a nation and their demand for a separate state is their natural right. Jarnail Singh Bhindrawale, a martyr of Sikh Independence Movement, clearly believed that Sikhs cannot live with Hindus who exploited and betrayed Sikh nation right through course of history.
Organisation for Minorities of India (OFMI), an organization which is responsible for bringing news about Indian atrocities towards Sikhs and Muslims has declared in its recent report that Indian Government has always sponsored violence against minorities using state-resources and apparatus. It is the moral and diplomatic obligation of Pakistan to help innocent Sikhs in India and Muslims of Kashmir from Indian butchers and their atrocities. The level and intensity of Indian propaganda against Pakistan can only be met with reciprocal proportionality.
— The writer is freelance columnist based in Islamabad.