J&K witnessed many tragic events, Tribal invasion was one of the most tragic

0

In the fall of 1947, the people of Jammu and Kashmir witnessed many tragic events. The tribal invasion was one of the most tragic. It was an earth shattering event. This single event turned the course of history in the Indian sub-continent. It was a deep wound which is still bleeding. It becomes fresh and painful when some an intellectual in Kashmir tries to deny or distort this event. There could be two reasons for the denial or distortion of these events: one, lack of knowledge of these historical events; and two, intellectual dishonesty. It is the responsibility of Kashmiri intellectuals, social and political leaders and writers to transfer the correct narratives of our history for posterity and to keep the record of our history straight. I very often write about this issue in my columns, and whenever I do so I feel like blood is dripping from my pen. I feel like I am hearing the cries of those innocent women who were robed, raped, kidnapped, and killed by the raiders of Islamic Pakistan , I pause and mourn for them. I feel deeply sorry. These events not only effected our past, but they also effected our present and future. These events gave birth to the Kashmir issue, a constant threat for peace in the Indian sub-continent.
Among those who planned, lead, and financed the tribal invasion the most prominent was Sardar Showkat Hayat Khan. Sardar was one of the closest confidants of Muhammad Ali Jinnah and a top leader of the Muslim League, a powerful ruling party at that time. Sardar spoke several times in the public as well as in the press about the tribal invasion of 1947.His detailed interview on this subject was published in Daily Jang, London, in April 1995. In his famous book, The Nation that Lost its Soul, Showkat Hayat Khan has written in detail about the tribal raid in Kashmir. On page 278 of this book, he wrote that he was appointed Supervisor of the Kashmir operation. He requested Brigadier Akbar Khan and Brigadier Sher Khan to provide him with their services. Both officers belonged to 6/13 Frontier Force at that time. They also requested the services of Colonel Dara, Kayani, and Khanzada along with guns from Lahore fort. On page 218 he wrote that Minister of Treasury, Ghulam Muhammad, had named Khurshid Anwar for the command of this operation. Khurshid was a reserve officer in the Railway battalion and former National Guard of Muslim League. His only qualification was that he was the first cousin of Minister Ghulam Muhammad. Showkat Hayat Khan opposed his nomination, but he was appointed because Minister Ghulam Muhammad and Prime Minister Lyaqut Ali Khan insisted on it. Three hundred thousand rupees were given to them from the treasury by Ghulam Muhammad for this operation. They gathered the tribesmen in Sawat and fixed a date on which to attack Kashmir. Showkat Hayat Khan stayed at the border of Muzaffarabad, Kashmir. He was not allowed to go further because he was a minister of the Pakistan government and did not want to be seen in Kashmir, because this war had to be presented as a peoples’ rebellion against Maharaja Kashmir. Sardar writes that the tribal men refused to listen to Khurshid Anwar when they arrived in Baramullah. They asked Khurshid to distribute the three hundred thousand rupees. Khurshid refused to hand them the money because that amount had been given for the whole operation. At that point the tribesmen got angry and started looting and plundering. They took jewelry from the local women, looted bazaars and houses, and even kidnapped and raped several women. This book written by a government minister and close associate of Mr. Jinnah clearly states that the tribes did not raid Kashmir on their own initiative. They were brought into Kashmir, the Pakistan government and Military led and financed this operation, and tribes were involved in pillaging. If this proof is not enough, then I would like to draw your attention towards Major Hamayun Ameen’s book, The War of Lost Opportunities. This book is considered a reliable source in the military circles of Pakistan. In this book, Major Ameen writes that Mr. Jinnah deputed the responsibility of Kashmir to Prime Minister Lyaqat Ali Khan. Lyaqut Ali gave this task to IftiKhar-ud-Din, who in turn consulted Sardar Shoukut Hayat and Brigadier Akbar Khan. A meeting was held on this issue in Lahore which was presided over by Prime Minister Lyaqut Ali Khan. In this meeting, decisions were made about the impending Kashmir operation. Major Amen writes that there were three fundamental parties in the Kashmir operation: Muslim league leaders like Sardar Shoukut Hyat, Iftikhar- ud-Din, and Khurshid Anwer; the tribal men; and Brigadier Akbar Khan. The Brigadier was in charge of the weapons and equipment department at the General Military Headquarters, Rawalpindi. He was asked to arm the tribal raiders. He was asked to use all the means at his disposal without letting the British officer, who was commander of the Army at that time, know. Major Ameen writes that the tribal men were brought from the North West Frontier Province in Government trucks to Abbottabad to launch a raid in Kashmir under the command of Khurshid Anwer. Some of the facts of Major Ameen’s book are rein forced in Brigadier Akbar’s book, Raiders in Kashmir. But the most reliable source on this count is Air Marshal Asghar Khan. Mr. Asghar Khan wrote in his book that he personally participated in the Kashmir invasion. He also wrote that his brother, Major Aslam Khan, was leading the Pakistan Military and tribesmen in Muzafferabad sector. These sources from the Pakistan military and government circles clearly accept the fact that the tribes were brought to fight under the command of Pakistan military. Some of the tribesmen were also handed over to the former military men in Pooch to fight against the Dogra army there. They did not go to Kashmir to help their brothers and sisters who were in need. They were hired to fight, and their main motives were money and war booty. Apart from this unchallengeable evidence, we also have testimonials of the people who have been part of these events. The Pakistan occupied Kashmiri leaders who participated and, in some cases, led these events publicly admitted to the tribal invasion and looting in Kashmir. Among them the founder President of so called azad Kashmir Sardar Ibrahim Khan and Justice Yusuf Saraf are prominent. Some tribesmen who participated in this operation are still alive in Waziristan. They admit to having been brought by Pakistan military officers in military trucks to fight in Kashmir.

LEAVE A REPLY