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Drawing The Line Essay

1477 words - 6 pages

India and Pakistan have been in conflict over the territorial boundaries of Kashmir since 1947 and have yet to solidify resolution in this ongoing battle. After three major wars, many skirmishes, and a variety of treatises, there is still a tug-of-war being fought over Kashmir’s borderlines; and despite UN intervention, there is continuing disparity over who is right and who is wrong. A mixture of truth and fiction appear to be at the heart of the dispute, which is lead by the assertion that under a mysterious document, know as the “Instrument of Accession,” Kashmir gave up it’s land to the Indian government in exchange for military protections. While there is a huge divide in perspective, most people of Kashmir are insistent that Pakistan is the natural choice for governance.
In 1931, a revolt by the citizens of Kashmir to over-throw the oppressive Maharaja Hari Singh regime ended in the overwhelming defeat of the people of Kashmir. After much dissonance by the Kashmiri people, Singh relented to these pressures, and the eventual adoption of the Legislative Assembly was enacted ("Kashmir - Pakistan Mission to UN", 2013). This semi-democratic government was not satisfying enough for the citizens of Kashmir, however, and Maharaja Hari Singh underestimated the subsequent insurgency. That is when India agreed to step in and provide military protections in exchange for accession to India ("Kashmir - Pakistan Mission to UN", 2013). “According to the instruments of partition of India, the rulers of princely states were given the choice to freely accede to either India or Pakistan” ("Kashmir - Pakistan Mission to UN", 2013), which allowed Maharaja Hari Singh the liberty of choosing a country, either India or Pakistan ("Kashmir - Pakistan Mission to UN", 2013) and he chose India.
The Maharaja’s alliance with India was in contrast to wishes of the majority of Muslim Kashmiri’s and this is where things began to get sticky. The controversy arose out of the alleged signing of the Instrument of Accession on October 26, 1947 ("Kashmir - Pakistan Mission to UN", 2013), which gave principality of the Kashmiri territory over to India. There was, however, a codicil to the admission of Kashmir into unification with India, which was a plebiscite ("Kashmir - Pakistan Mission to UN", 2013).
In 1947 a war broke out between India and Pakistan over the territorial rights of the Kashmir province. This conflict was finally overcome by a plea from India to the UN and by January 1, 1949 a ceasefire was instituted ("Kashmir | Timeline, n.d., p. 4). and today this line is still called the Line of Control ("Kashmir - Pakistan Mission to UN", 2013). “On 5 January 1949, UNCIP (United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan) resolution states that the question of the accession of the State of Jammu and Kashmir to India or Pakistan will be decided through a free and impartial plebiscite” ("Kashmir | Timeline, n.d., p. 4). This vote never came to pass, and a “Truce...

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