Long live Pakistan by Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani

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During the recent joint session of parliament, all parliamentarians and media friends experienced a pleasant surprise to see the world’s largest ever national flag, prepared by 60,000 green and white balloons, at the National Assembly Hall.

The huge flag, an initiative of the Pakistan Hindu Council, was the result of five days of hard work. The unique plan also succeeded to attract the attention of the Guinness Book of Records and the certificate will be issued before Independence Day on August 14.

The patriotic Hindu community has once again demonstrated its love for Pakistan at a critical time when India has revoked Articles 35-A and 370 of its constitution to suppress the people of Occupied Kashmir. This unfortunate situation is not only raising a sense of insecurity among the Kashmiri people but is also a violation of the Indian constitution.

This year, during my visit to India, I emphasized to the top leadership of India to understand the importance of cordial relations between both countries. When both Korean countries can join hands in the best interest of the Korean people, then why are we reluctant to initiate peace process? Even the countries that achieved independence after us are now among the world’s developed ones countries. How long will wel blame each other for all wrongdoings ?

The motive behind the partition of the Subcontinent was to ensure regional stability and co-existence. Quaid-e-Azam was known as the ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity. Therefore, the leading role of non-Muslims such as Jogendranath Mandal and S P Sinha must not be ignored. We must not forget that Quaid-e-Azam had given Mandal a most important responsibility in his cabinet. He made clear on various occasions that Pakistan would emerge as a role model country where all citizens have to enjoy equal civic rights.

However, the sad demise of Quaid-e-Azam resulted in the empowerment of a few extremist elements on both sides. The Evacuee Trust Property Board is still non-functional without any capable Hindu chief. The national institution is supposed to look after as many as 1130 Hindu temples and 517 Gurdwaras across the country. The exclusion of non-Muslims in the federal cabinet and ministries without any just reason is another separate debate.

In my views, the upcoming US presidential elections can be a turning point for Pakistan in the sense that Trump is expected to adopt every strategy to win. He is well-aware that peace in Afghanistan is not possible without Pakistani support. However, he is least bothered to convince India for cooperating with Pakistan. The current situation of Kashmir is in fact conspiracy to engage the armed forces of Pakistan to the borders. Therefore, the US election can have long-term impacts on Pakistan and region, both positively and negatively.

During my speech at the joint session of parliament, I emphasized that we must strengthen our economy and overcome internal differences in order to promote the Kashmir cause in an efficient and effective manner. Moreover, we must avoid using foul language and blame-game. Our focus of struggle must be to serve the national interests.

It is very unfortunate that we are not utilizing our geo-strategic position and leading role at the international level. History is witness that every great leader used to adopt realistic approach to solve conflicts. In this regard, I also quoted the Last Prophet (pbuh), Madina Model, and Nelson Mandela ‘s vision to forgive opponents for the sake of societal harmony.

Therefore, a committee with representation of all parliamentary political parties must be formed on a priority basis. The representation of non-Muslims must be ensured in this regard. The committee must be given the task to mobilize the international community on the Kashmir issue. Today, 22 crore Pakistani people are standing with the innocent people of Kashmir, saying “Enough is enough”.

We need to convey this solid message to the world including the UN and OIC that the entire Pakistani nation, regardless of political or religious affiliations, is on one page to support the Kashmir cause. We must keep highlighting our stance that the Kashmiri people must be given their just right to self-determination. Otherwise, typical speeches and condemnation statements are of no use for Kashmiris.

The writer is a member of the NationalAssembly and patron-in-chief of the

Pakistan Hindu Council.

Twitter: @RVankwani

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