The world is moving a lot faster than us. If only our people understand the implications of this for our struggle.
Meanwhile, in a bid to alert my co-citizens in good time about crucial upcoming events in public interest I sent out the following message this evening:
A serious message for my co-citizens of AJK - 07/09/2021
Being recognised as a civil society is a condition for being recognised as a Nation State, in the world's most contested region.
We need a world class university and an international airport in AJK if we don't want to disappear as a State - this requires legislation and hence a Public Assembly - the world recognises constitutionalism and representative democratic politics based on public opinion research....it can easily distinguish that from colonial and post-colonial governance structures....we must continue on this people's referenced journey in 2021....I restarted my personal journey towards the end of July when I took my mother to Sharda, even though my health had still not recovered from 13 hunger strikes and almost 10 months in prison.
The rest of the world is moving much faster than we are and we have to catch up to survive.
In the next few days, this journey takes me to the Neelam Valley once again. There clearly needs to be a common communication channel between civil society in AJK and both India & Pakistan, to avoid any misunderstanding about our pro-life measures, which are part of a prominent internal narrative of Jammu Kashmir & Allied (JKA).
All 3 public narratives (viz. Indian, Internal and Pakistani) must learn to co-exist in this territory while we strain to improve people's lives.
The JKA constitutional, political and human dilemma is not for India and Pakistan to resolve in the shape of permanent division of our territory and forever contested space for the world's larger powers. It is for the local inhabitants to define neutral boundaries and provide practical solutions for the region's water needs.
This journey requires pro-life measures such as world-class education and direct communication with the outside world.
We in AJK cannot progress with these aspirations without religious harmony. Just as the Masaajid and Darbars of AJK are visited and worship to Allah is alive so must the Mandirs and Gurdwaras of AJK be given that opportunity to be worshipped in, in a manner bearers of those religions seek. It is our duty in humanity to facilitate them.
This is a major reason why other societies are flourishing and we are not.
The Muslims of AJK in particular should also take historic reference from the rule of Zainul Abideen alias 'Budshah', who ruled Kashmir from 1420 to 1470. He understood the importance of religious harmony for security, education, economy and culture. He proved to be the most successful Muslim ruler ever in this region and by far.
Tanveer Ahmed - an independent action-oriented public policy researcher, operating uninterrupted on the ground in AJK since April 2005