Hues of peace in Kashmiri tea

Published: September 18, 2012
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I share nothing of what the ‘real’ Kashmiris are made of except the skin tone, the taste for food, the love of Kashmiri tea and the admiration for pashmina shawls. PHOTO: AFP

Some time back, I was watching an interview of the Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) leader Yasin Malik on a local news chanel. The host kept probing the Kashmiri leader about his new ‘non-violence freedom movement’ in Kashmir despite Yasin Malik’s violent past history.

Will this movement work and why did it become non-violent now after almost 18 years of being so active?

My personal interest in the programme came from being indoctrinated since childhood (from Zia’s state media) that ‘Kashmir is an integral part of Pakistan’ and that ‘Kashmir will one day become Pakistan’ (because it was always ‘meant’ to be). And because I am a Kashmiri myself, ‘so-called’ Kashmiri that is, I share nothing of what the ‘real’ Kashmiris are made of except the skin tone, the taste for food, the love of Kashmiri tea (which we call namkeen chai) and the admiration for pashmina shawls.

I was conveyed this rather blatantly by a ‘real’ Kashmiri I made friends with in the UK last Ramazan. The only attributes unfortunately given to Kashmiris in ordinary Pakistani circles are those of being beautiful people who make great food and who love to eat. This generalisation is usually true but I was pleased to see that the ‘real’ Kashmiris are far beyond food and the desire to look good. I suppose more because generally people in Kashmir would be fair-skinned and everyone would see putting sugar in Kashmiri tea as an atrocity! (Traditionally, the pink Kashmiri tea is cooked with salt and not sugar as is commonly done in Pakistan.)

My new Kashmiri friend was a medical doctor who was outspoken, brave and I must say rather proud of being a Kashmiri. Her family had a big orchard in held Kashmir and came from a well-to-do, educated background. I was so fascinated by the fact that I was meeting a ‘real’ Kashmiri that my inquisitive mind started brimming with questions. I asked her to tell me about life in Kashmir in 2011, what the Kashmiri people wanted now, and whether they want to join Pakistan.

To the last question she said ‘no’. Infact she added cautiously that Kashmiris would be better off without being with Pakistan. After three wars having been fought between Pakistan and India over Kashmir and with nothing having worked out so far, this response did not come as a surprise.

Here’s what my Kashmiri friend ‘A’ told me:

“Kashmiris are tired. We are a whole generation that has grown up in fear and violence. We have all lost brothers or relatives or near and dear ones in the freedom movement. Now we don’t want the same violence for our children. We don’t want to be with Pakistan, we just want our own independence.”

When I asked her out of curiosity whether her new country will be able to survive on its own, she said that her people will work it out and that they just need their chance.

After hearing her harrowing account of being pulled off her medical university’s bus, where she was ordered to raise her arms to be searched and she refused along with several other disturbing details, I thought that she was such a brave woman. This mother of two children was a Kashmiri whose bravery radiated through her words. It was more important for her to guard her honour and to have courage. Sure she said she was very scared when such incidents happened. There were several times when she thought she would be shot and killed by the Indian forces. But she lived through it all to be able to decide that she didn’t want this for her children.

When Yasin Malik was repeatedly asked by the TV host why he had shifted to a non-violence movement, I wondered why he didn’t give the same reasoning that ‘A’ gave me. Yasin Malik has just had a baby daughter. Maybe family life has softened him to see the other realities of life. There is no parallel or substitute to freedom. Claiming it through reason and patience may shift the goal of the leadership of Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front further away, but at least they will be giving peace a chance too.

As a Pakistani Kashmiri with ancestors from Srinagar, I can perhaps never understand or be able to gauge the density of pain that the Indian Kashmiris have lived through and possibly live through even today. But above, all as a human being who believes in peace, I feel that it is time that the strongest words be used now as methods of mass communication to show the world who these beautiful people are. They are the ‘real Kashmiris’, the fore runners in the desire to have peace. And they want to be heard.

Last year on my English Eid, a friend invited all the community Pakistanis to her house for a one-dish get together. ‘A’s’ family and another Indian family were also there. I couldn’t help overhearing the conversation between ‘A’ and the Indian guest near the Kashmiri tea tray.

‘A’ poured out a cup to the Indian man.

“Will you take sugar or salt?”, she asked.

“What do you normally take?”, he asked.

“Originally it’s taken with salt”, she told.

“I’ll take whatever is original then”, he smiled and concluded with a pinch of salt in his pink tea.

If only ‘people’ could rule the world.

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Ammara.Malik

Ammara Farooq Malik

A High Court Lawyer with an LL.M from the University of London and a Masters in Political Science, Ammara is a socio-legal analyst, writer, and Founder of the SEPLAA Foundation. She blogs at ammarafarooqmalik.wordpress.com

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • http://www.faysalm.co.nr Muhammad Faysal

    It’s a good post to break generalisations of Kashmiris. Though we are fair skinned people and who love to eat (become gluttons during Wazwan). Being a Kashmiri and living in the streets of Srinagar, I will be fair to say that:
    a) Kashmiris want to be Independence. Too many games have been played by the both countries on Kashmir as if the people are chess pawns.
    b) Kashmiris want prosperity for Pakistan and they do not want Pakistan to suffer like it is suffering now.
    c) Kashmiris would love to see the Colonial Article 56 in AJK constitution to go. And if possible Azad Kashmir becomes a real ‘Free Kashmir’.
    d) Kashmiris will keep supporting Pakistani Cricket Team (hockey too).
    e) Kashmiris have deep sense of respect and love for what Pakistan is based upon, for what it has done good for us. And we also have a grudge for the bad done to Kashmiris in general.
    f) Kashmiris want PEACE. A REAL PEACE FOR ONCE IN ALL THESE DECADES.

    Love
    An Occupied KashmiriRecommend

  • Khurram Malik

    Well I have seen your last name ends in Malik. Interestingly those people whose name ends up in Malik as a tribe name are infact one of the biggest Clan of North West Punjab as well. Maliks specifically Awans have their roots in Kashmir and in Potohar and Hazara regions are all same people and even the language spoken in Azad Kashmir is almost same spoken in Potohar and is called Pahari language. Anyway All i can say the future lies in peace in all the whole region but in sustainable future it does not seem to be materialized because of Strategic importance of Kashmir to all stake holders including China, India and Pakistan.Recommend

  • mr. righty rightist

    Quite an interesting article.

    However, if you read history objecti9vely you will know that original kashmirirs are Hindus and Buddhists who were displaced, murdered, converted by invading muslims.

    Frankly, Pakistan is also Hindu land.

    All kashmiris are welcome to live in India as Indians or welcome to go to the land of pure.

    Forget about separating Kashmir. That will not happen in a 1000 years.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Khurram Malik: My maiden surname is ‘Wyne’, another deep rooted Kashmiri name but with origins in Arabia. Some even all it the ‘Lost tribe of Israel’, a tribe which wandered to the beautiful valley of Kashmir and settled there.But I would need to do more research to confirm.Recommend

  • Kashmiri Pandit

    If Kashmir wants independence……….we will complete the partion by sending all Muslims to Pakistan…………Recommend

  • sid

    The separatist have influence only in srinagar(old city),pulwama, anatnag and some urban towns…………..no influence in rural areas,shias,paharis,gujjars,Ladhak(buddhist),jammu(hindu/sikh dominated)………..Only sunni Muslims cannot decide fate of all kashmiris……..Recommend

  • BlackJack

    Madam, I wish you well, and would request you to extend your survey to other citizens from J&K – including Kashmiri Pandits, Shias, Ladakhi Buddhists, Hindus and Sikhs from Jammu. Once that is done, pls share the results, as well as your opinion on whether their interests hold any relevance in this discussion on freedom – and if not, then why not. Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Sid: When we talk about ‘peace’, we don’t reach conclusions. We start by hearing everyone out. This article is only about that first step. Let everyone voice their opinion in Kashmir: the Sunni Muslims as well as the other groups. Recommend

  • FU

    @Kashmiri Pandit its just a matter of time the majority Hindu community run out of patience looking at the way this people behave and act like hypocrites. Recommend

  • Mrs. Buksh

    Considering Kashmir is such a volatile area for the two neighbours and the main bone of contention between Pakistan and India, the peace process should start there. Great article.Recommend

  • arshia qasim

    I would normally take mine with a pinch of salt, but I know many who enjoy it with sugar, or with sugar and salt both. As you said, ‘if only people could decide!’. I can already see, many of your readers are doing the ‘deciding’ for everyone else’s sake :)
    I read another thing today, ‘do what do are doing as if it makes a difference, because it does!’ Heres to hoping the little efforts join to make a big difference. Amen.Recommend

  • Mohinder Sandhu

    In 1989 russians left afganistan and all the mujahideens got out of work.They were directed to kashmir.Same year the trouble in kashmir started, which was no co-incidence.It was not very difficult to ignite trouble in kashmir at that time,as the pakistani army and mujahideens were all very pumped-up because they thought, they have defeated a mighty russian army.They fought the war against russians on the name of their religion,so the religious fanaticism was at its peak.Now the muslim kashmiris have realised that they are heading into a blind alley.If india successfully keep pakistan out of the picture,the peace in the valley is bound to return.Recommend

  • Mohan Lal

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:
    Well in Pakistan everybody claims to be of Arabian descent. I wonder where the indigenous people of the land know called Pakistan have gone? Recommend

  • Faaltu mein khwam kha

    @author
    **My maiden surname is ‘Wyne’, another deep rooted Kashmiri name but with origins in Arabia. Some even all it the ‘Lost tribe of Israel’, a tribe which wandered to the beautiful valley of Kashmir and settled there.But I would need to do more research to confirm.**
    no you dont need to,in fact no one in Pakistan needs to research his ancestry as everyone inevitably draws his or her lineage from Arabia Recommend

  • Aire

    I empathize with the woman from Kashmir and I wish the armed forces would stay put in Barracks. However, they are there because people like Yasin Malik resorted to indiscriminate violence and they were gleefully helped by external actors. Its only in past few years that the voiloence has reduced (but not stopped). The armed forces will have to gradually adapt to this new change which I hope is here to stay beyond 2014 when US withdraws from Afghanistan.

    I hope Yasin’s baby girl heralds in a new peaceful political class in Kashmir that sees merit in democratic set-up and does not tie the Kashmiri identity to parochial things like being fair-skinned and the local cuisine. I also hope that both Pakistan and India don’t repeat the past mis-steps.Recommend

  • http://na deep

    You guys have absolutely no idea what Jammu and Kashmir is all about. I just travelled through the state and cannot pretend to be an expert – but what i came to know through my 10 day drive through Srinagar, Kargil and Leh, I can tell you one thing. Possibly Sunni muslims of the valley support the separatist movement – and here again, it would be difficult to gauge if that were a majority. Yes People here are tired of Geelani’s repeated calls for bandhs and his own penchant for making money from both sides.

    Kargil is mostly shia with a buddhist minority – they do not want anything to do with pakistan. Leh is buddhist and is the only part of the state enjoying the influx of tourism because here unlike the muslim part of the state, differences are tolerated. I wont even mention Jammu here.

    the fact is you seem to be so taken by your fair complexion – only people of the subcontinent can be proud of something which is literally skin deep. Do you realise you sound like a racist, a religious fanatic, when you speak of a separate nation for sunni kashmiris of the valley simply based on fair skin and salty tea. My own people in the south of India are quite fair complexioned – should they ask for a separate nation because sometime in the distant past some foreigners f__ our ancestors?

    Sheesh – I suggest you travel across India – and see the so called lesser people – the ones you call slumdogs – and learn to appreciate how people live and tolerate differences albeit with the odd political riot here and there. Recommend

  • Indian

    @Muhammad Faysal:
    My dear friend, India too wants prosperity for Kashmir. The support that Pakistanis have shown is a mere strategic support. A sane person will understand when incidences of violences in Gilgit-Baltistan and PoK comes into picture. Pakistan already has negotiated with some part of Kashmir to China without any fight. There is a growing presence of PLA in Pakistan side of Kashmir. My dear friend, I may be in a world class comfort typing this message to you, but I understand how it feels when violence takes away most of a person’s productive age. Deep frustrations and anger comes naturally. I think Kashmiri leaders should have a long term goal. Even after Kashmir becomes free, It will be a more volatile place with every surrounding country trying more influence in Kashmir. It will be a strategic playground like Afghanistan.

    Peace to all!!Recommend

  • sid

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:
    Have heard there opnion for two long a time……….Repeted bandhs, threatning foreign tourists,not allowing construction of hospitals for Amarnath pilgrims while there are 1000s HAJ houses around the country……….never a single article on Kashmiri Pandits……….Recommend

  • G. Din

    “Kashmiri tea (which we call namkeen chai) “
    Actually the proper name is “sheer-chai”. I am told it takes a full day to make a pot on slow heat, then season it with lots of milk and salt to taste. Good for your digestion, too!
    Rest of your blog is flimflam. Next time you meet a “real ” Kashmiri, euphemism for some Sunni Kashmiris ( more than likely, you will not meet a Shia, a Gujjar, a Bakerwaal, a Pandit, a Buddhist or a Dogra Kashmiri), ask him/her:
    1. where were his/her yearnings for azaadi in the years 1947 to 1989 – 42 years?
    2. did those yearnings drop from the skies in 1989?
    3. why was the year 1989 so important to him/her? (Hint: The answer is in one of the above posts.).
    4. what makes him/her think that his/her adversaries do not have the option/ the will/ the resources to deny his/ her demands?
    Remember, too, to tell him/her that:
    1. “Talaaq-tallaq-talaaq” is never an option in geo-political matters especially with a party which does not subscribe to shariah. Once you are in, baby, you are in!
    2. National security of India has far more precedence over his/her yearnings for azaadi for the simple reason that his/her yearnings can easily find fulfillment by him/her walking across aman-setu on a now regularly-plying bus with a one-way ticket whereas national security of India is not so easy to ensure if he/she is given azaadi.Recommend

  • Karan

    Kashmir is an integral part of IndiaRecommend

  • Nasi

    I find Kashmir and its people, particularly those from the valley fascinating and also love the Kashmiri or pink tea, I take it with sugar though. Nevertheless, I think it is a popular misconception to consider Kashmiris as a whole more fair-skinned and beautiful than those of surrounding regions of either India or Pakistan. Beauty is generally evenly distributed through out populations and I don’t think Kasmiris are an exception. Past migration from more northern latitudes of the central Asia may be responsible for some unusually fair-skinned Kashmiris.Recommend

  • Anonymous

    Thank you for your comment and before I even start out on such a survey, I can tell you in my humble opinion, that the opinion of all the other groups in Kashmir should also matter.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Mohan Lal:
    I think I just wrote that I shared nothing with the people of Kashmir in this article except the few (largely insignificant!) similarities I mentioned. Doesn’t it also show by analogy and without announcement that I am saying that today I am just ‘Pakistani’? If it doesn’t ring out as clear then I must apologize but this was the underlying intent. As far as the explanation of the surname is concerned, it is customary for Kashmiris to discuss their roots through surnames, most of which also denote professions. It is a way for them to get familiar with one another in a matter of one sentence. ‘Indigenous people of Pakistan’…ofcourse you know historically that there is no such group. Pakistan was ‘created’ not ‘discovered’ hence it has people from various backgrounds who now all call themselves Pakistanis. Realistically this statement can be hoped is the same in India but ofcourse we know that both Pakistan and India have their set of problems and this article is not about those.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Faaltu mein khwam kha:
    Dear Sir, I cannot speak for ‘everyone in Pakistan’ but I can certainly speak for myself. Please understand that this article is neither about me nor about my personal views. It is about a person I met and how I perceived her as a writer. Had I written an article about facts and figures, this would have been a dangerous article indeed! Does everyone in Pakistan trace their roots back to ‘Arabia’? That’s news to me. If you have an interest in anthropology you would come to realize that there are people in Pakistan from several interesting backgrounds including Persia, Afghanistan, ‘indigenous’ India and even Europe.
    Regards.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @deep:
    If you think that this article is about ‘fair skins’ and ‘tea’ then you have obviously not read the article deeply enough :) Peace.Recommend

  • Fayaz Dar

    Let Indians and Pakistanis leave us alone.Recommend

  • Arijit Sharma

    @Ammara Farooq Malik: ” … My maiden surname is ‘Wyne’, another deep rooted Kashmiri name but with origins in Arabia. … ”

    20 years from now – you will want to hide your Arabic origins.Recommend

  • Tony Singh

    @ Author
    High time now to visit Kashmiri Pundit’s refugee camp in Jammu and get their views tooRecommend

  • http://bangalore Somesh

    There were several times when she thought she would be shot and killed by the Indian forces. But she lived through it all to be able to decide that she didn’t want this for her children.
    @author: You write this piece of article or opinion with a prior assumption that the Indian forces are draconian. Means you are biased to begin with…..Recommend

  • Tony Singh

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:
    And then how about discussing partition itself. Why don’t you go through the comments on blog “Indo- Pak peace facade : what about Kashmir?” You will get a better picture how each stakeholder Indian. Kashmiri or Pakistani feel.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Arijit Sharma: Let’s discuss this after ’20 years’ then. Why speculate over assumptions now? I could say the same to you about your surname. But what good will come out of it? It would have no relevance to the article which is a writer’s impression of people to people contact in Kashmir.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Tony Singh

    ‘High time now to visit Kashmiri Pundit’s refugee camp in Jammu and get their views too’.

    Would really like that.Will I get a visa?Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Somesh: You quoted me as writing: ‘There were several times when she thought she would be shot and killed by the Indian forces. But she lived through it all to be able to decide that she didn’t want this for her children.’

    That should tell you that these are the views of the subject not the author. I have simply told the story as I heard it. Recommend

  • http://peddarowdy.wordpress.com/ Anoop

    Do you really think Independence for a Muslim majority region is such a good idea? Especially one which has experienced Islamic Jihadi Violence?

    Just look at Pakistan. Its leader wanted it as a secular republic, and look how it turned out. Look at most of the 50+ Muslim Majority nations around the world, how many are not despotic regimes, who rule in the name of Islam? Where Sharia is not imposed?

    Despite all your delusions Kashmir will regress in such a case. Kashmiris have lately begun turning towards the dark side.

    http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2012-05-04/india/315721521ahmadis-kashmir-valley-mufti-azam

    http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2012-06-29/india/324714081sufi-shrine-muslim-scholars-desecration

    http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2012-09-14/india/338432491conspiracy-theories-islam-and-muslims-black-magic

    These are some of the examples. If this is happening now, imagine the situation when, say, Kashmiris get “Independence”. Like it happened in Pakistan and Afghanistan after the Soviet withdrawal, the Islamic forces will declare its their hard won victory.

    Despite all your protestations about what other nations practice is not in the spirit of Islam; and, Sharia is fair(I am assuming you will say all these, usually every Muslim does) and is not being implemented correctly, the fact remains, when the country with Muslim majority populace turns towards the Right, it usually becomes what Pakistan is becoming today or already has become.

    Later on Kashmiris will lose their most precious asset – Kashmiriat. Already Kashmiri pandits have been driven away by people such as Geelani and Malik.

    All is left for India to go back and it wont take 66 years for Kashmir to become like Pakistan, it will become like Pakistan much sooner.

    If you want well for Kashmiris, make sure it lives in a Hindu-majority country. Recommend

  • Salar

    Can there ever be peace in Kashmir? Recommend

  • Tony Singh

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:
    Apply for it. Afterall where there is a will, there is a way. Isn’t it?Recommend

  • M.Ahmer Ali

    @Karan:
    Kashmir has never been the integral part of India and in this regard Indians you better leave/stop daydreaming and stargazing because Allah Almighty has said in His true words that
    “Yaran-e-jahan kehte hain Kashmir hai Jannat
    Jannat kissi kafir to mili hai na milegi.”Recommend

  • M.Ahmer Ali

    Kashmir is the most gorgeous place on the earth but without brutal and cruel wild beasts Indian troops whose are forcibly controlling the paradise on the earth “Kashmir” which can never be of the pagans and shall never be of the pagans……Recommend

  • Amit

    Madam:

    You have missed the point, perhaps? In Indian State of J&K it is multi ethnic society, you will find Muslims (shia, sunni, ahmadi etc), Hindus, Sikhs, Budhists, You have churchs In srinagar, but tell me in POK your so-called Azad Kashmir, what is the ethnic diversity none? It is 100% muslim, Why?

    There were non-muslims living in those area say Muzzafarabad, mirpur, Kotli, Bhimber in 1947 etc etc, what happened to all of them? We know it. but we would like to listen from you. Because Azadi is a wide defined term, it does not mean that a muslim has to live separately & drive out the other ethnic non-muslims out which was done in POK, your so-called Azad Kashmir-in 1947 by Pakistan & then murder Hindus both in Kashmir & Jammu regions post 1990 by Pakistan trained so-called diplomatically assisted, terrorits. Otherwise till 1989 J&K was a peaceful land.

    Pakistan tried gun in 1947 to take J&K, you failed to annex it. in fact you were driven out by Kashmiris in 1947. In fact what constitutes so-called Azad Kashmir ( leave alone Gilgit Baltistan for a while which is also part of J&K) are districts that were part of Jammu district in erst-while J&K state as on 1947.

    And by the way your side is more confused some districts aka Azad Kashmir is ruled by Prime Mister, some district Like Gilgit Baltistan by a Chief Minister, it cannot get more politically weid than this. Who reports to whom… Proxy Pakistan…

    If Kashmiris are being killed on roads it is because of Pakistan today you are experimenting to take Kashmr with gun aka Jehad with sugar coat of Azadi label again & then beat the drum of Human Rights violations. From Gun only bullets come out not roses.Recommend

  • Sajad Hussain

    If u want to know something abt kashmir u need to come here and see how people r harassed, murdered, gangraped by indians. Fake encounters for purpose of promotions r a daytoday affair…. Can anyone tell me why india has kept its 9 lac army in kashmir…highest militerized area in world. They want to rule with army by giving them powers as AFSPA….But they forget that word freedom has occupied every brain of kashmir like a virus…so no treatment iz possable…regarding kashmiri pandits…they were forced to leave kashmir by jagmohan so that he can repress the profreem people brutely….come and see life in kashmirRecommend

  • nitish

    Kashmir is not all about sunni muslims.Kashmir is owned by non-muslim too.Before asking separation for kashmiris from india(though it is impossible),i would like to ask few questions from author of this blog.1.what will be ruling structure of the state ….theocratic (islamic) or secular democracy
    2.How kashmir is gonna survive….Coz Kashmir has zero contribution to indian economy.Tourism is long back story and foreigners r not interested any more as they were shot down by separatist and muzahidin.GOI is simply wasting money in billions for the sake of security and defense.Kashmiris r in different part of india and have jobs in cities like bangalore and pune. No doubt kashmir has strategic importance.But it will lose the credibility the day it gets separated.
    3.what about those 5000 sqkms of land which is gifted to china and dont say we have no right to interfere .
    4.How you r going to accommodate pandits.They r no more going to believe you .You simply termed them traitors as they wish to be part of india.
    5.Will you guarantee the safety for shia and ahmedis?we r well aware of situation in GB.
    6.What about millions of expatriate from afg. living in POK?They r serious threat to the demography of the state.At least we r successful in keeping the identities of kasmiri intact.370 is there and no one can buy the land in kasmir from other part of india neither they can get citizenship.Can you say the same for your part.
    Simply whining will do no good for you.J&K is a bigger part of economy.we r here to pull them out of devastation caused by extreme flood and drought situation and earthquakes .we have seen how pak was with begging bowl after earthquake in POK and GB.Kashmir as a country cannot stand of its own.As far as your article is concerned ,I can easily smell your racial complex.India doesnot need your tea and coffee as well.Other than kashmir,assam and karnatka is big producer of tea.Whatever your identity is ,it doesnt matter.But what you have achieved it matters.And what you guys have achieved,world knows.Recommend

  • nitish

    @M.Ahmer Ali: Buddy ,Tough luck!!Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    Dear Mr.G. Din,

    You have written:
    “Kashmiri tea (which we call namkeen chai) “
    Actually the proper name is “sheer-chai”. I am told it takes a full day to make a pot on slow heat, then season it with lots of milk and salt to taste. Good for your digestion, too!
    Rest of your blog is flimflam.

    My blog post was very much deliberately intended to be ‘flimflam’. There are enough people writing about the political and religious issues there. I wanted to make mine a light read.
    I am glad that you found my target is achieved.

    As far as your ‘sheer-chai’ is concerned, you have been ‘told’ it takes a day to cook and I thank you for your recipe. I on the other hand cook it every other day and it’s not that difficult to master. :)
    Regards.Recommend

  • Tony Singh

    @M.Ahmer Ali:
    “Yaran-e-jahan kehte hain Kashmir hai Jannat
    Jannat kissi kafir to mili hai na milegi.”
    Dil behlane key liye khayal aacha hai. Filhaal Janaat tow hamare pas hi hai aur khush hai.
    Keep dreaming for next 1000 years nope that is 1000 -39. You do the calculations.
    You have been posting against freedom of speech now how about following it? Do we start burning Pakistani flags for calling us “Pagans” and “Kafir”?Recommend

  • nitish

    ET where is my first comment?pl publish it………Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Anoop:

    You wrote:
    Do you really think Independence for a Muslim majority region is such a good idea? Especially one which has experienced Islamic Jihadi Violence?

    If you are asking for my personal opinion then I would not base it on religion at all. I think that Kashmiris should see the economics, the strategic viability and the collective will of all the people in Kashmir to be able to decide. I think the best way to go about it is to let them have the plebiscite that they have been demanding all these years. If the Muslims are a minority separatist group then that too can be highlighted once and for all and without further debate (provided it is conducted fairly)…and provided the Muslims who want ‘independence’ really are a minority.

    It’s the people of Kashmir who should decide, whatever it is. That’s my personal opinion.Recommend

  • Jat

    @Sajad Hussain: There is an Op-ed article here on this very newspaper by a very respected Muslim journalist. Go read it

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/405014/genetic-engineering-in-east-pakistan/

    After the holocast in Nazi Germany, this kind of ethnic cleansing and brutal genocide has never been seen in modern history.

    So be quiet.Recommend

  • http://peddarowdy.wordpress.com/ Anoop

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:

    Right. But, why not include the entire India in the plebiscite, if one is held at all given the Constitution of India will not allow it?

    So, the way out is elections. Since, moderate parties are being elected, one who are pro-India, I think its pretty clear who the Kashmiris want to go with. FYI, the reason for this is Ladakh is Buddhist majority and Jammu has a very good number of Hindus.

    So, J&K, through free and fair elections have already given their verdict.

    So, do you accept them now? Your personal opinion has triumphed. Recommend

  • Haris Z

    @Amit: How can you say

    ‘If Kashmiris are being killed on roads it is because of Pakistan today you are experimenting to take Kashmr with gun aka Jehad with sugar coat of Azadi label again & then beat the drum of Human Rights violations. From Gun only bullets come out not roses.’.

    We only want what is best for Muslims of Kashmir because they are our brothers. What about the human rights violations committed by Indian forces in Kashmir? Are you denying them??Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Anoop: Have the general population of Kashmir happily accepted these elections? If they have then yes my opinion has triumphed and this should be the end of discussion. But from what I have been told, such ‘general elections’ are ‘meaningless’ for Kashmiris (possibly Muslims only) and hence have hardly any value.

    I would request a resident of Indian Kashmir to jump in at this point and explain to both Anoop and myself what their point of view is. I may be wrong in assuming certain things and I would appreciate if someone gave their objective opinion to increase my knowledge.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Moderator: The previous comment was not made by Haris Zayed (my office associate). He was logged in and I just noticed that name went out with my comment. Kindly rename it to Ammara Farooq Malik. Many thanks and I apologize for the inconvenience.Recommend

  • B.N. Tickoo

    @Ammara Farooq Malik: (ONLY ABOUT SHER-CHAI )

    Mam, hear it from a Kashmiri only. It does not take a day to cook the Sher-chai or Nun chai, you know Muslims often call it by later name & Kashmiri Pandits by the former.
    Imagine what will happen to the stomach lining of a Kashmiri if he starts to drink tea made that way, you know there are large cases of stomach ulcers prevalent in Kashmir due to this, tea for that matter any tea cannot be boiled for a day. Let you hear it from Kashmiri, it takes hardly fifteen to twenty minutes to brew the tea say for 20 cups, the catch is that a pinch of soda (called Fulll in Kashmiri) is added in cold water (not in hot water) to tea leaves before heating. Soda is always given by a shopkeeper selling this tea, And may I add all this tea comes from Darjeeling & Assam there is no such tea leaves cultivated in Kashmir. Once after boiling a dark crimsom hue is reached it means it is ready to add water (cups as needed) & milk.
    And if you want to take its full taste you have a bun called Chocch-vor (by Muslims) or Tailvor (called so by Pandits) from a Tandoor baker called “Kandur” with butter filled into it, it has its own taste.
    Recommend

  • FU

    @author I suggest you to look at what UN says on plebiscite in Kashmir. Don’t ignorantly ask for a plebiscite because India is not gonna conduct it just because you demand it. Recommend

  • Jat

    @Haris Z: Please look at the map. What you have in your mind is the stereotype of a Kashmiri youth throwing stones at security forces. This stereotype portrays a small subset or age group of a small percentage of population of Muslims living in Kashmir valley, particularly around Srinagar.

    So what about the Shias, Hazaras, Gujjar muslims, muslims from the hilly regions, Buddhists, Hindus, Kashmiri Pandits of Kashmir valley, Tibetan refugees ? So shall we, 1.2 billion Indians of a secular motherland with a history going back thousands of years allow ourselves to be blackmailed by a few brainwashed fanatics ?

    No Sir ! Never going to happen !!

    What we can do is to provide full financial and logistic support to all those who want to migrate to and live in Pakistan. Nothing less, nothing more.

    By the way I have driven around in all of Jammu & Kashmir in my own car twice, the last time being in 2010. I took a whole circuit starting from Manali, on to Leh, to Pangong Tso near Tibet border, back to Leh then on to Nubra valley (over 90% Muslim population), back to Leh and then on to Kargil (over 90% Muslim population), Drass, Srinagar, Udhampur, Jammu and back. I had night stops in Leh, Kargil and Srinagar. I had no security, was alone for most of the route and at no point did I feel unsafe. The only uneasiness I felt was when driving through a small area of Srinagar town. Total number of days spent driving 14.

    No security checks, no bomb blasts, no suicide bombers, no drone attacks, no F-16s bombing our own population, no heavy artillery guns bombing our own population, no tortured bodies thrown on the roadside, no heads of soldiers stuck on tree branches, no loudspeakers spewing hatred against fellow humans.

    You people can’t even drive through Karachi without getting shot at…Recommend

  • Jat

    @Haris Z: You don’t realize how terrifying you sound. Why ? Because we see everyday how you treat your brothers. And we know how you treated your ‘brothers’ in Bangladesh.

    Worse than a horror movie.Recommend

  • Amit

    @Haris Z:

    You say you only want what is best for Muslims of Kashmir because they are our brothers? With what ? Gun in hand? No we other inhabitants- non muslims of J&K do not subscribe to this political view of yours?

    I repeat my question there were non-muslims living in area say Muzzafarabad, mirpur, Kotli, Bhimber in 1947 etc etc in POK , what happened to all of them? We know it. but we would like to listen from you. What about the human rights violations committed by Tribal & Pakistan forces in J&K in 1947 on them & then started it again in 1990 ?

    How there was a complete exchange of population of non-muslims from those area that are under POK to Indian State of J&K in 1947? And if we had committed atrocities upto 1990 how people from all religions co-exited there upto this day & in POK they did not? Recommend

  • Amit

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:

    Madam how are so-called PM in POK aka Azad Kashmir & CM in Gilgit Baltistan elected then? Then you have to lay logic side by side? Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @B.N.Tikoo: Many thanks for this information. And yes I agree this tea is not cooked for an entire day.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @FU: ‘I suggest you to look at what UN says on plebiscite in Kashmir. Don’t ignorantly ask for a plebiscite because India is not gonna conduct it just because you demand it.’

    I just did…again!:

    ‘Text of 1949 UN Resolution Calling for Referendum on Kashmir:

    The United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan, Having received from the Governments of India and Pakistan, in communications dated 23 December and 25 December 1948, respectively, their acceptance of the following principles which are supplementary to the Commission’s Resolution of 13 August 1948:

    The question of the accession of the State of Jammu and Kashmir to India or Pakistan will be decided through the democratic method of a free and impartial plebiscite;
    A plebiscite will be held when it shall be found by the Commission that the cease-fire and truce arrangements set forth in Parts I and II of the Commission’s resolution of 13 August 1948 have been carried out and arrangements for the plebiscite have been completed;’

    I had already seen this document. It seems you had not. Now which part did you want me to read again? The part that says ‘1. The question of the accession of the State of Jammu and Kashmir to India or Pakistan will be decided through the democratic method of a free and impartial plebiscite’ ?

    Ofcourse I may be ‘ignorant’ but you seem much more knowledgeable, therefore kindly interpret this article for all the readers and also confirm which rules of interpretation you are using to see things ‘differently’ than what the Literal Rule may imply. Recommend

  • Tony Singh

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:
    Ma’m would you care to answer the following :
    During partition
    1. Were muslims of India given a say?
    2. Were Hindus and Sikhs of Pakistan given a say?
    3. Then why say for Kashmiris?

    Do not discuss Kashmir without discussing the partition itself.Recommend

  • http://peddarowdy.wordpress.com/ Anoop

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:

    http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2011-04-26/india/294744201panchayat-polls-panchayat-elections-voters-cast

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123048366626337803.html

    Are you sure they are not accepted?

    I think you are going by a few rioters and hooligans who do indulge in violence. As you know well with Islamic parties in Pakistan they have massive nuisance potential, but get very less votes in elections. Are you sure this isn’t what is happening in Kashmir?

    Why would Kashmiris vote in such overwhelming numbers if they didn’t believe in elections? Geelani and Malik were the ones who said they should boycott the elections. But, as you see, this call went unheeded. Recommend

  • Jat

    Madam here is the relevant Part II – if the moderators allow it to be published here

    PART II
    TRUCE AGREEMENT

    Simultaneously with the acceptance of the proposal for the immediate cessation of hostilities as
    outlined in Part I, both Governments accept the following principles as a basis for the formulation of
    a truce agreement, the details of which shall be worked out in discussion between their
    Representatives and the Commission.

    A.

    (1) As the presence of troops of Pakistan in the territory of the State of Jammu and Kashmir
    constitutes a material change in the situation since it was represented by the Government of
    Pakistan before the Security Council, the Government of Pakistan agrees to withdraw its
    troops from that State.

    (2) The Government of Pakistan will use its best endeavour to secure the withdrawal from the
    State of Jammu and Kashmir of tribesmen and Pakistan nationals not normally resident therein
    who have entered the State for the purpose of fighting.

    (3) Pending a final solution the territory evacuated by the Pakistan troops will be administered
    by the local authorities under the surveillance of the Commission.

    B.

    (1) When the Commission shall have notified the Government of India that the tribesmen and
    Pakistan nationals referred to in Part II A2 hereof have withdrawn, thereby terminating the
    situation which was represented by the Government of India to the Security Council as having
    occasioned the presence of Indian forces in the State of Jammu and Kashmir, and further, that
    the Pakistan forces are being withdrawn from the State of Jammu and Kashmir, the
    Government of India agrees to begin to withdraw the bulk of their forces from the State in
    stages to be agreed upon with the Commission.

    (2) Pending the acceptance of the conditions for a final settlement of the situation in the State
    of Jammu and Kashmir, the Indian Government will maintain within the lines existing at the
    moment of cease-fire the minimum strength of its forces which in agreement with the
    Commission are considered necessary to assist local authorities in the observance of law and
    order. The Commission will have observers stationed where it deems necessary.

    (3) The Government of India will undertake to ensure that the Government of the State of
    Jammu and Kashmir will take all measures within their power to make it publicly known that
    peace, law and order will be safeguarded and that all human and political rights will be
    guaranteed.

    C.

    (1) Upon signature, the full text of the Truce Agreement or communique containing the
    principles thereof as agreed upon between the two Governments and the Commission, will be
    made public.Recommend

  • http://peddarowdy.wordpress.com/ Anoop

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:

    Sorry to butt in but did I hear the conversation going the plebiscite way and UN Resolutions and all that hubris?

    http://www.jammu-kashmir.com/documents/jkunresolution.html

    So, first thing first. UN called for a cease-fire then Truce Agreement. That effectively means, Pakistan withdraws first, as clearly stated in the resolution, after which India does the same and then Plebiscite was to be held.

    http://www.kashmiri-cc.ca/un/sc14mar50.htm

    Things are supposed to be held in that order.

    But, like a Bollywood movie, there is a twist. Pakistan gives part of that Territory to China! Thereby nulling and renegading from its part of the resolution.

    In this scenario why should India honour its part? Why indeed, considering it has done no wrong? it has even the accession agreement, which entitles it to the part of Kashmir now in the control of Pakistan and China!

    Technically, Pakistan has no case, Plebiscite is not going to happen, not because India, but because of the perfidy of Pakistan.Recommend

  • http://peddarowdy.wordpress.com/ Anoop

    One more thing even if a guy from Kashmir does come and says one thing how we do know he is speaking for the entire Kashmir region? How do we know he is not carrying his own political agendas?

    Elections are the only sure way and that is pretty clearly in India’s favour.Recommend

  • FU

    @author very clever. The plebiscite can only happen if you restore the original inhabitants of PoK and get back the land you sold to China shamelessly. On the Indian side the Pandits have to be brought back and resettled in Kashmir valley. There are other religions Shia Muslims,Buddhists, and Hindus in Jammu. No one in their right mind will vote for your beloved Pakistan except fanatic fringe consisting of Geelani who like a hypocrite will not hesitate to come to Delhi to save his life.The fate of Shia Muslims, Hindus, and other minorities in Pakistan is already sealed. We know who they are gonna vote for if plebiscite is held.Kashmir cannot be independent as it is a land locked state which has to be dependent on India or Pakistan. Even with all the tight security and presence of large number of Indian troops, Pakistan tries all it can to push its so called mujaheeds. I can imagine what will happen if it becomes independent. So author from Indian point of view we are very clear, we are not here to listen to your babble. Our soldiers did not sacrifice their lives to give up our Kashmir where our ancestors lived. So i would suggest you to invest your time to promote women’s rights, separation of religion and state, freedom of thought which are very rare in your so called pure Islamic societies. Recommend

  • nitish

    We only want what is best for Muslims of Kashmir because they are our brothers
    As you being a muslim, i was surprised by your tolerant and moderate reply.
    But here you spot on ,and that is what we wont let you do.A nation based on islamic ideology is completely unacceptable for us .Come by secular democratic mode ,then possibly we can hear your plea.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Amit:

    Sir, I have read your comment(s) twice and am unable to make out what your point is? I agree that the government structural system in Pakistan can be improved. Where have I said in the article that Kashmir should come to Pakistan? I think Kashmir would fare better without being a part of Pakistan. Recommend

  • Jat

    @Ammara Farooq Malik: Madam the Part II is posted. The part A of part II will be an eye opener for you if you really didn’t know what the UN resolution was all about. Recommend

  • FU

    @author Lol you said you read the UN resolution. Really then give a reply to what Jat posted. Like i said before you are ignorant about what UN resolution says about plebiscite in Kashmir. And i stand by my comment. Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @FU: “we are not here to listen to your babble”

    Well Mr./Ms. FU you obviously are, which is why you are still following these comments.

    I am copy pasting a reply I gave above for your reference:
    ‘If you are asking for my personal opinion then I would not base it on religion at all. I think that Kashmiris should see the economics, the strategic viability and the collective will of all the people in Kashmir to be able to decide. I think the best way to go about it is to let them have the plebiscite that they have been demanding all these years. If the Muslims are a minority separatist group then that too can be highlighted once and for all and without further debate (provided it is conducted fairly)…and provided the Muslims who want ‘independence’ really are a minority.
    It’s the people of Kashmir who should decide, whatever it is. That’s my personal opinion.’

    Furthermore you have written:
    ‘So i would suggest you to invest your time to promote women’s rights, separation of religion and state, freedom of thought which are very rare in your so called pure Islamic societies.’

    I am already using my time to do several productive activities than make personal remarks and be uncivil to an author on an online forum.

    Many thanks for the other parts of your comments though.Recommend

  • Jat

    @Ammara Farooq Malik: As FU so kindly pointed out, out of the territory that was to be vacated by Pakistan Army and the tribesmen, the Pakistani government sold over 5000 sq km of land to the Chinese in lieu for the nuclear and missile tech.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Anoop: Once again, I think I have written all I had to write and you have made your point. Neither you alone nor I alone can be the voices of our political leadership. You and I are (I assume for you too) ordinary people. We can have our opinions but we cannot force our opinions on other people. I at least can not and have not done it through my article. The article was supposed to make you realize that ‘people’ can talk. Even people who have been wronged. Maybe they have something different to say now. So hear them out if you as Indians really do want to help them.

    For the Kashmiri who can enlighten us on this point…I would still like to hear whether you have something different to say.Recommend

  • FU

    @author I was not uncivil. I was pointing out the facts for you again you came a full circle about conducting plebiscite in Kashmir not one word about the land you gave as charity to China, not one word about original inhabitants of PoK, not one word about Pandits who were driven out and atrocities committed against them, not one word about the rights of Shia Muslims, Hindus,and other minorities, and finally not a word about Pakistan army who have done more damage to peace in Kashmir and there support for militant groups. You want people to listen to you and expect them to keep a straight face. Recommend

  • http://na deep

    congrats Ammara – you seem to have garnered many responses. And I hope somewhere along the way, we have helped you catch a glimpse of the other side. You have to acknowledge the role played by the jobless militants 1989 onwards – do some reading and you will know that the implied claim on Kashmir (despite your many protestations) is nothing more than skin deep and a pakistan sunni muslim’s allergy to live and let live – you cannot even claim ownership on the tea because the pandits also consume it.
    Broaden your mind and look at yourself as a citizen of the world – and you will see the indian soldiers have done a commendable holding job – there have been human rights abuses on both sides just as partition saw killings on both sides. That is the source of all your hatred – your belief that only muslims migrating to pakistan were killed – walk around your neighbourhood wherever you are in pakistan and ask 80 year olds – they would tell you about the hindus and sikhs who were hounded out of their areas Recommend

  • Zalim Singh

    @ Ammara Farooq Malik

    you want Yasin Malik to continue his blood thirsty ways? If he is reformed- good for him.Recommend

  • Zalim Singh

    pathetic article.Recommend

  • http://peddarowdy.wordpress.com/ Anoop

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:

    I think it would do well do recap.

    You said Plebiscite and UN Resolutions, I showed how that is not possible.

    Then, I said Elections are the say out, you said they are not good enough and not accepted by Kashmiris.

    To prove you wrong or dispel your wrong notions, I showed how Kashmiris have enthusiastically voted in the past Panchayat elections – a staggering 80% of them voted. Even in certain areas in Mumbai, only around 45% of the people vote.

    What doubt do you still have? I agree that years of indoctrination takes time to get corrected.

    What is this insistence on one man opinion? Don’t you believe in a Democracy? Its the masses that count

    I hope you do believe in Elections as the truest barometer of people’s wishes, don’t you?Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Anoop: And good morning to you too! I was away because I was ‘investing my time’ to do actual productive activities (Another reader had said this :)). I shall be able to respond to you over the day…Thank you for your patience.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @’Zalim’ Singh:

    ‘You want Yasin Malik to continue his blood thirsty ways? If he is reformed- good for him.’

    Where have I said in the article that he should??. Please read the article before you comment!

    ‘pathetic article’

    I’ll repeat again: ‘Read the article’. You are welcome to your views after that.

    And I can’t help saying this: Please don’t be so ‘zalim’, have a heart. Read this article as a light read not as a treaty or policy paper!Recommend

  • Madiha

    Mam I enjoyed your article. I think it’s great and I think you’re fighting the cyber invaders well! Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Madiha: Thank you for your comment. It really was not meant to be a piece on ‘politics’ rather an article on human behaviour and culture. It’s been interesting to see how everyone pulled it in the directions of religion and politics! Recommend

  • Jat

    @Madiha: This is not an article, rather a work of fiction. And in fictional work it is easy to fight the imaginary cyber invaders.

    The facts are all there in black and white, in these comments, but not a single post by any Pakistani to counter them. Recommend

  • FU

    @Jat Pointing out the facts according to her is uncivil.She doesn’t even have the face to answer Part II of UN resolution and issues i have raised.All she said was thanks for other parts of comments. Then they wonder why Kashmir issue is hardly taken up by UN and other countries.Recommend

  • Jat

    @Ammara Farooq Malik: You wrote and I quote, “…After hearing her harrowing account of being pulled off her medical university’s bus, where she was ordered to raise her arms to be searched and she refused along with several other disturbing details… Sure she said she was very scared when such incidents happened. There were several times when she thought she would be shot and killed by the Indian forces…”

    Article on culture ? You being a lady, I will leave it at that. Moreover you are a Pakistani, so being free with facts is also understandable.Recommend

  • umer

    India has definately done a good job. Now Kashmiris fed up of being occupied, killed, raped, kidnapped, tortured etc wants to liberate from both India and Pakistan.
    It is time to move forward, Kashmiris and only Kashmiris should decide whether they want to be part of India or Pakistan or live as a seperate state.

    **

    Ideal Situation

    **
    Its been over 6 decades, – India and Pakistan should grow a pair to resolve the issue instead of blaming it on each other. A political solution, a referandum may be, under a neutral setup should be taken.

    **

    Reality

    **
    I have been to line of control near Khel (neelum valley, AJK), where relatives meet – some on this side of river and some on that side. Chanting Pakistan Zindabad, Hindustan Murdabad. I think due to muslim majority in Indian Occupied Kashmir will lead to alliance of Kashmir with Pakistan, the only reason why India is not allowing UN’s referandum in Kashmir.

    **

    Shame on Pakistan, India and rest of
    the world

    **

    Man slaughter in Kashmir and other henious acts by Indian army against muslims and freedom fighters against hindu pandits and criminal silence of Majority of Paki, indi and others. Shame on all of us. “We call ourselves humans” – This should have been the joke of the millenium. Recommend

  • umer

    @Tony Singh:
    In election of 1945-46 (provincial and general elections) Muslim League won all the 30 seats reserved for muslims. In provinces with muslim majority Muslim league 95% seats whereas congress won in Hindu majority areas. So yet Muslims and hindus were asked, they had a say ! As far as Kashmir is concerned 88% of muslims voted to be part of Pakistan. But like Junagardh and other punjab states red cliff commission favored congress! so yes kashmiris had a say but was unfulfilled on account of indian armies invasion.

    But that all is in the past – Even today if u ask Pakistanis or Indians they would want to live in their own countries peacefully. So why not Kashmiris ? They deserve freedom, it is their long long long denied right.Recommend

  • http://tribune.com p r sharma

    @Mrs. Buksh:
    Stand of Government of India is very clear that Kashmir is an integral part of India. so there can not be any talk on this matter. All other issues can be discussed and resolved Recommend

  • FU

    @umer Delusions of some of the Pakistanis knows no bounds. Recommend

  • umer

    @ Ammara

    A very sensible article and an amazing followup of the comments.

    @ FU & Anoop

    Great participation.

    Hope:
    Atleat we all agree that there should be a solution and Kashmir and Kashmiris should be pulled out of this sorry state.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @nitish:
    You have written:

    ‘i would like to ask few questions from author of this blog.
    1.what will be ruling structure of the state ….
    2.How kashmir is gonna survive….. No doubt kashmir has strategic importance.But it will lose the credibility the day it gets separated.
    3.what about those 5000 sqkms of land which is gifted to china and dont say we have no right to interfere .”

    Had I been a part of the foreign ministry I would have gladly and easily answered.

    For these you are erroneously assuming that I or my subject wish for Kashmir to come to Pakistan. Ofcourse we are not the spokespersons of the Foreign Office:

    “4.How you r going to accommodate pandits.They r no more going to believe you .You simply termed them traitors as they wish to be part of india.
    5.Will you guarantee the safety for shia and ahmedis?we r well aware of situation in GB.”Recommend

  • http://peddarowdy.wordpress.com/ Anoop

    @umer and others who talk about Human Rights,

    I, for one, am most deeply ashamed of any Human Rights violations in any part of my country, including Kashmir.

    But, let that not be an excuse for giving up claim on that part.

    What is the solution? Normalcy. Why should people of Kashmir be stuck in a cycle of perpetual violence and not enjoy normal life that people like me live in cities like Bangalore?

    That was not possible due to Terror and the state’s response to that Terror and all the unintended consequences.

    I want India to uphold the dignity of every Indian, not because of the opinion of others, but because if it doesn’t the idea of India will be soiled; an idea precious and worth fighting for.Recommend

  • FU

    @umer So is Balochistan Mr.Hypocrite. If you want to impose a rule on others then better make sure you yourself have lived up to it. The present generation of Pakistanis die still seeing Kashmir with India and so is present generation of Indians.Thats the ultimate reality whether i and you except it or not. I rest my case with this. Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @nitish: Again you write:
    “6.What about millions of expatriate from afg. living in POK?
    At least we r successful in keeping the identities of kasmiri intact.370 is there and no one can buy the land in kasmir from other part of india neither they can get citizenship.Can you say the same for your part.”
    I have lived in AJK for a year. It is a different country altogether and not even considered part of Pakistan under the 1973 Constitution.

    “Simply whining will do no good for you.”
    Rather immature of you to write this.

    “As far as your article is concerned ,I can easily smell your racial complex”
    You are very amusing. I am not going to comment further on this.

    “India doesnot need your tea and coffee as well.”
    Good. Who’s offering? :)

    “Other than kashmir,assam and karnatka is big producer of tea.Whatever your identity is ,it doesnt matter.”
    And what is your identity ‘nitish’?

    “But what you have achieved it matters..”
    Exactly. And for that I strive everyday.

    “And what you guys have achieved,world knows.”
    That’s the sad part. The world should see all the positive things that happen in Pakistan too. And I assure you Sir, they do happen.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Tony Singh & @Umer:
    “Do not discuss Kashmir without discussing the partition itself.”

    At the time of partition, the Muslim majority states came to Pakistan and the Hindu majority went to India. If every Muslim or Hindu was heard out at that time, then there would have been chaos. I found the following information from an INDIAN site:
    http://www.bharatonline.com/kashmir/culture/religions.html

    “Three major faiths are clearly dominant in different parts of Jammu and Kashmir. However, in terms of total population, Islam clearly dominates the Kashmir valley. You will find the valley brimming with Muslim population. In addition to that Hinduism and Buddhism also constitute a part of the religions in Kashmir. The followers of Buddhism inhabit the Ladakh area of Jammu and Kashmir State.

    Islam
    The predominant religion of Kashmir valley is Islam. Muslims constitute more than 90% of the total population of Jammu and Kashmir. Even in Jammu, Kargil and some other districts, Islam forms a substantial part of the population. The Muslims are broadly divided into two sects – the Sunnis and the Shias.

    Hinduism
    Hinduism is the second most dominant faith in Kashmir. The majority of Hindus consist of Kashmiri Pandits and Gujjars. Majority of the Kashmiri Pandits migrated from the Kashmir valley because of the constant terror threat and are now present in a minority. On the other hand, many Gujjars got converted to Islam.

    Buddhism
    Buddhist population is mainly found in the Ladakh region of Kashmir, where it predominates. In the main Kashmir valley, however, Buddhists are present in a negligible numbers.”

    It shows that J& K is a Muslim ‘majority’ region. If we go by your ‘partition agenda’,you tell me where Jammu and Kashmir should have gone? Rather than living in the past I think that Umer has summed it well that we should look to the future.Recommend

  • A J Wantu

    @Author: Ammara, you wanted to hear from a real Kahmiri – here I am. I left Srinagar to work in a city called Pune in 1986. I was the first in my family to go outside Srinagar. Now my entire family is out of Srinagar. In all 3 generations , about 100 of us are outside in various cities- not all by choice. We cannot go back. My property family property was coerced out of our hands in the ’90s. We were forced to sell it to our business rivals who happened to be muslims and were ‘sad’ to see us go. When we want it back today, there is no deal. The courts cannot help us. Nobody can.

    Forget about plain Pandits who had to flee. I have scores of muslim friends who were ‘liberal’ and educated professionals – even they are out and do not want to go back. No body wants to be in between militants and armed forces. You get hit from both sides. My friends may hate the armed forces, but they hate the militants too. As soon as the army is out, the militants come out and want to tell us what to wear and how to pray and how much money to contribute for their cause and how to shelter and protect them.

    I wish there was an easy answer. There is none. Yes, many hate ‘India’ and cheer for Pakistan. But, they are the same ones who line up for all the state subsidies without shame.

    I want Kashmir to be opened up to India so that we have the same law and order that the entire country has. Independence and merging with Pakistan are not practical options – all of these would be a nightmare. Even merging with azad Kashmir would be a nightmare for most of us. Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Anoop:
    You have written:
    “Things are supposed to be held in that order.
    But, like a Bollywood movie, there is a twist. Pakistan gives part of that Territory to China!”

    Things never happen according to plan?? Unfortunately the real world is not a bollywood movie.
    I am not a political expert but I did read up on the Sino-Pakistan Agreement. Pakistan had to give up more land to China than China to Pakistan. I think that Pakistan might have been in the position of choosing between the frying pan and the fire. In 1959 When the Chinese maps started showing parts of Pakistan as Chinese territory; Pakistan had to raise the issue. Since Pakistan was already at logger heads with India and with the wounds of partition still fresh, it would be no surprise if Pakistan would strategically look for an ally for the newly created State.: China.
    Since China had just ended the Sino Chinese War with India in 1962, it too was in need to form alliances and was quick to resolve the border dispute with Pakistan through the Sino-Pakistan Agreement 1963. India had amassed a lot of military equipment for the Sino-Indian War from the west and it was feared in Pakistan that that equipment could be used against Pakistan. There was strategic planning and developing foreign policies with the Indian support of the Dalai Lama/ Tibet situation, the Cuban War in the West, the creation of the Peoples Republic of China in 1949, which all added to the confusion in the region. There was no ‘charity’ given to China anywhere. Infact Pakistan had seen the hostile tendencies of the new PRC and had even offered India to lodge a joint proposal to India but India had not conceded.

    “Prior to the war, Pakistan also shared a disputed boundary with China, and had proposed to India that the two countries adopt a common defence against “northern” enemies (i.e. China), which was rejected by India.[24]”Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Jat: ” As FU so kindly pointed out, out of the territory that was to be vacated by Pakistan Army and the tribesmen, the Pakistani government sold over 5000 sq km of land to the Chinese in lieu for the nuclear and missile tech.”

    I spent the entire day reading the history of this region including UN documents etc. I was not able to find this bit of information anywhere. Can you please quote the source of your research that lays down this motive? Otherwise please don’t confuse an already confused matter by bringing in a nuclear discussion.
    Please give me a credible citation. You will find me to be an open minded learner.Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @FU :

    “I was not uncivil. I was pointing out the facts for you again you came a full circle about conducting plebiscite in Kashmir not one word about the land you gave as charity to China,”

    I’ve given several words above. Please do read.

    “not one word about original inhabitants of PoK, not one word about Pandits who were driven out and atrocities committed against them, not one word about the rights of Shia Muslims, Hindus,and other minorities, and finally not a word about Pakistan army who have done more damage to peace in Kashmir and there support for militant groups. You want people to listen to you and expect them to keep a straight face.”

    And why would I write anything for all of these different groups? I am not their spokesperson. I can only answer you if I know who YOU are. Disclose your identity and then we can have a ‘civilized’ discussion. I am neither afraid of a debate nor of discovering that I am wrong. But I need to be convinced with reason and facts…with a ‘straight face’. Recommend

  • Ammara Farooq Malik

    @Deep: “congrats Ammara – you seem to have garnered many responses. And I hope somewhere along the way, we have helped you catch a glimpse of the other side.”

    Thank you and yes I have actually.

    “You have to acknowledge the role played by the jobless militants 1989 onwards – do some reading and you will know that the implied claim on Kashmir (despite your many protestations) is nothing more than skin deep and a pakistan sunni muslim’s allergy to live and let live – you cannot even claim ownership on the tea because the pandits also consume it.”

    The Pandits are not the majority in Kashmir and never were…read up more on it today.

    And the you write:

    “Broaden your mind and look at yourself as a citizen of the world – and you will see the indian soldiers have done a commendable holding job – there have been human rights abuses on both sides just as partition saw killings on both sides. That is the source of all your hatred – your belief that only muslims migrating to pakistan were killed – walk around your neighbourhood wherever you are in pakistan and ask 80 year olds – they would tell you about the hindus and sikhs who were hounded out of their areas.”

    Yes I agree there has been bloodshed on both sides and terrible things have happened. I wrote this article because I saw the people of India first and read up on policies later. I would think that after living abroad for 10 years and having Indian teachers, friends, my family doctor, even my banker, I would have a ‘broader’ horizon of thought. But despite my having to date several Indian friends, please respect the fact that I am a Pakistani and I stand by my people.
    More on that note soon…please bear with me.

    Recommend

  • Tony Singh

    @Ammara Farooq Malik:
    Would have been chaos? What was that that happened in 1947? A disciplined orderly exchange of population? With millions dead! Either you are plain naive or brain dead. Grow up lady! Now we have 13% of muslim population. Now what you expect? That based on your logic they along with a part of Kashmir be transferred to Pakistan? Come on keep living in la la land. that is not going to happen, For the muslims of India are as much as Indians as I am. and. If someone is not happy he/she can take one way ticket to Islamabad.Recommend