By Navnita Chadha Behera
The Kashmir factor is sometimes forged as a "territorial dispute" among belligerent pals in South Asia. yet, there's even more to the tale than that. "Demystifying Kashmir" argues that spotting the wealthy, complicated, and multi-faceted personality of Kashmir is critical not just for knowing the structural motives of this clash, but additionally for offering possibilities to set up a simply, achievable, and lasting resolution.
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Extra info for Demystifying Kashmir
Moreover, Kashmir was allowed to retain important cultural symbols such as its own flag and political titles such as wazir-i-azam instead of chief minister for the elected head of the government, and sadar-i-riyasat instead of governor for the head of state. Nehru endorsed the idea of convening a separate Constituent Assembly to determine the future of Dogra rule and to draw up the state constitution. Kashmir’s special position was further cemented by the Delhi Agreement of 1952, which abolished hereditary rulership, vested residuary powers in the state, continued special citizenship rights for “state subjects,” permitted the state to fly a separate flag alongside the national flag, and, subject to certain restrictions and limitations, extended to Kashmir provisions of India’s constitution regarding fundamental rights, emergency powers of the president, and jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.
Nehru had clearly gone a long way in accommodating Kashmiri sensitivities by adapting the Indian constitution to suit their special requirements. This strategy paid rich dividends. Sheikh Abdullah’s opening speech to the Jammu and Kashmir Constituent Assembly makes it clear that the nature of the Indian state— which by comparison with Pakistan was far more compatible with the vision of Naya Kashmir (New Kashmir), the National Conference’s political manifesto of 1944—was what clinched the National Conference decision to accede to India.
First, the Muslim population of Jammu and Kashmir was not wedded to its religious identity so was not homogeneous in that sense. The Muslim leadership overlooked the fact that the political class’s primary allegiance was to Kashmir rather than Islam. Second, the predominant sentiment in the Kashmir Valley was a strong opposition to feudal practices, and the National Conference was fighting that battle. Pakistan was concerned not so much about being incomplete without Kashmir as about seeing a Muslim-majority state voluntarily opting to join India.
Demystifying Kashmir by Navnita Chadha Behera