SAYAR AHMAD MIR
This is not for the first time that Afridi spoke about Kashmir as earlier this year he said that the situation in Kashmir is very appalling and worrisome. In fact, it would not have been possible for Afridi to say that his country doesn’t need Kashmir and they(Kashmiris) should be allowed to decide their future and have an independent country if he would have bound himself by the very concept of the lasting importance of a nation-state. He could only say this because the cricketing sports star traversed the borders of the nation which doesn’t allow a man to think beyond.
This year in the month of April Afridi tweeted, “we respect all. And this is an example of sportsman. But when it comes to human rights we expect the same for our innocent Kashmiris”.
Afridi, while addressing students in the British parliament said, “Don’t give Kashmir to Pakistan or India either. Let them be independent. Humanity is a big thing. Humans are being killed there. It hurts to see humans being killed whatever religion they may belong”. He enjoined the two nuclear power nations viz. Pakistan and India to leave Kashmir and let them decide their own future and let them be independent.
It is interesting to see the former skipper crossing the national borders or boundaries and to speak for the sake of humanity. The plight of Kashmiris may be understood by the fact that there is hardly any day in a week or month when a father or a mother doesn’t shoulder his or her son to the grave. People see the young budding blooms who were supposed to be in the schools, colleges, and universities getting killed on a routine basis, it is as if it is natural or has become a routine phenomenon.
The questions don’t change because they still remain the same that is whether the two nations will ever try to involve in a fruitful dialogue for the sake of Kashmir or for the sake of humanity? Whether they will come out once again with different narratives like terrorism, reluctance, blame gaming and so on which impedes peace? Whether the two nations will ever throw out their arrogance and start doing something substantive to solve the issue? And whether they really care for anything or whether they own any interest to solve the long pending Kashmir issue? The answer to these questions is not a hard-fought task for the two nations provided the two nations have a strong will and determination to solve the long pending Kashmir issue in which thousands of Kashmiris have lost their lives
It is pertinent to mention here that the Kashmir issue is difficult to resolve unless the two nations think beyond the nation-state because we live in a time where everything is defined, framed, and shaped by the nation-state thereby creating different borders whether they are physical, cultural, social and so on.
The continued importance given to the nations hampers people to traverse distinct boundaries which they built among them. And because of these borders, people can hardly think beyond otherwise a great Indian cricket player like Virat Kohli won’t say that you should not live in India if you love batsmen from other countries.
It is a compelling idea to prepare a nation where people can think beyond a nation-state. By saying this, I never mean that you should demean the importance of a nation. A nation is important and one should love it but then the continued importance of the nation should not blind one in a way that he won’t be able to see anything beyond it. Indeed, one can’t feel the pains and sufferings of people whether they are in Kashmir or Palestine, or Syria or any other corner of the world unless he or she starts to think beyond nation-state because pain is not pain if it is understood within the ambit of a nation state.
The author is a Hyderabad based Research Scholar. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org