National Blunders

Had the Indian leadership announced well before attaining independence that, it would institute genuine democracy in which every local entity is autonomous as advocated by Gandhi, it would have subdued the demand for Pakistan, since Muslims would then usually control Muslim majority villages, districts and states. The urge to centralise power led to partition and set both the nations thus created on the path of ongoing strife and self-destruction.

Had India instituted Gandhian true democracy, most third world nations may too have done so. Thus the damage caused by the Indian leadership has been phenomenal.

By withholding Indian forces, leaving part of Kashmir with Pakistan, and itself offering plebiscite, the Indian leadership compromised Kashmir’s territorial integrity with India thereby creating major internal political compulsions for the leadership of Pakistan, and instability for the people of Kashmir. India won the 1971 war, liberated Bangladesh, but again failed to retrieve the portion of Kashmir in Pakistan’s illegal occupation. The two nations are now locked in unending strife while the people of Kashmir have been condemned to unrelenting turmoil.

So long as the Indian State is abusing its own people under exploitative colonial laws, it has no moral authority to condemn the Pakistan State for its misdeeds. The people of both India and Pakistan are subjects of an exploitative system. Peace, stability and prosperity can be realised only if the nations in South Asia institute, through referendums, genuine democracy in which local entities control local resources and decision-making under effective transparency mechanisms. India and Pakistan may then also be able to evolve an acceptable solution for Kashmir.

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