August 08, 2007

Free to Choose India

The Indian National Interest blog announced an essay contest a couple of months ago. The subject was "Jammu and Kashmir: Solve", and the announcement urged entrants to "be imaginative, be bold and be compelling."

Yesterday, I heard from INI's Nitin Pai that my entry, Free to Choose India, won first prize.

Comments welcome. Whether it qualifies as "imaginative, bold and compelling" is something else you're welcome to comment on.


Keerthi Kiran said...

Dilip, probably people of kashmir would choose India for all the reasons you stated. But somehow i don’t believe that Pakistan even after such a referendum would leave Kashmir and India alone. Referendum if anything may help India take a moral high ground, nothing more.

what do you think?

Anonymous said...

The really bold move would be to do what the Indian Kashmiris want, with no linkage to PoK -since the referendum there is unlikely to ever happen.

I think I have said pretty much this before on dcubed commentspace (cry Freedom) but I didnt quite think it through then. The riders I would attach would be:

- any steps that are necessary to maintain the integrity of (the rest of) India in case Kashmiris choose to leave.

- safeguards /mechanisms for those Kashmiris that choose to stay with India (if the results are the other way, they are needed for those that chose to leave India).

- any steps to prevent Pakistan from stepping in to take advantage of such a situation.

- desirably a stable and friendly attitude towards us.

Effectively this would in all likelihood mean limitations or restrictions on 'sovereignty' even if it turns out that is what most Kashmiris desire.

I dont share your trust in the weight of public /world opinion amounting to anything much on the ground in Kashmir, anymore than it has in conflict zones like Palestine, Afghanistan, SriLanka etc.


Anonymous said...

They said: "If Kashmir goes, every one will ask for freedom and India will break up"

He said: "If everyone in India wants really an independent state its not worth saving the nation"

They said traitors like me should be killed and driven out of the country.

- Pappuman

Then, we all graduated, they all went to the US and say they will never return to India, which they think is screwed up.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you. The content is really convincing and nice. Its not brilliantly novel but its certainly a very fair solution. However dont you think your language is a little selloutish. Its very different from the way you write for your blog. Congrats for the first prize. I hope something like this is actually done.