Since after the Partition in 1947, India and Pakistan have been fighting over Kashmir. In 1972, a ‘line of control-LOC’ was created to divide Kashmir into two regions – Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Indian occupied Kashmir. However, the LOC was in no way a declaration of peace. Neither did it promise the safety and security of the Kashmiris living across the border.
Over the decades, thousands of people have lost their lives in Indian Occupied Kashmir. Civil unrest has been constant and many have given up their dreams to fight for the freedom of their land. Even though the entire world is speaking against the atrocities committed in Kashmir, the bullet ridden bodies of teenagers continue to appear on the news.
Agreed, generations of Kashmiris have suffered immensely and it is time for peace to reign. Kashmir Day on the 5th of February is celebrated every year for this very reason – to raise awareness of the carnage, and to remind the world that the land of the brave still needs to be freed. The national holiday also pays homage to Kashmiris who have died in the conflict.
How Kashmir Day was decided?
In 1990, Pakistani Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto, marked ‘Kashmir Day’ in 1990, on the advice of the then Amir Jammat-e-Islami, Qazi Hussain Ahmed. At that point in time, the rebellion in Kashmir was at its peak and many ready to put their lives on the line. The idea of Kashmir Day was to solidarity and alliance with the Kashmiri public and those who were fighting the Indian forces.
How is it celebrated?
Every year on the 5th of February, Kashmir Day is observed all over the country as a national holiday. Solidarity with the Kashmiris is shown by holding public processions and special prayers in mosques for the freedom of Indian occupied Kashmir. Schools, companies, politicians and different organisations also hold rallies, conferences and seminars to raise awareness on the plight of Kashmiris.
Are you doing your part in showing solidarity with the Kashmiris? Even a healthy discourse on social media platforms can play a huge role in awakening the consciousness of those who continue to remain mum as Kashmir bleeds.