Background of Indo-Pakistan Relations:
The context of Pakistan-India relations can never be completely understood without recalling August, 1947, when Pakistan and India emerged as independent nation states. Many outstanding bilateral issues of today date back to partition. Unfortunately, the Indian leaders particularly Jawaharlal Nehru's Congress Party had never thought it fit to inform the Indian public at large that Indo-Pakistan problems have their genesis in the vivisection of India. Indian leaders, till today, have yet to make an announcement to the effect that India was divided on the demand of Muslims belonging to Bihar, Bombay and United Provinces (at present Uttar Pradesh).
Pakistan's National interest: It has made it clear that a resolution of the Kashmir issue was absolutely vital to or normalizing relations with India. This would have to be in accordance with the aspirations of the Kashmiris. She is also convinced that peace with India could not be achieved simply by wishing for it, or equally, through policy of appeasement towards India. That is why Pakistan has followed a policy of Minimum Credible Deterrence Doctrine vis-à-vis India, says Kasuri.
Pakistan emerged on the World map in August, 1947. It was created on the basis of religion. A month before its creation, the founder of Pakistan, Quaid-e-Azam Jinnah told the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan that the state would function like a secular entity. Within a year thereafter Jinnah died, with him died also the concept of a modern and tolerant state of Pakistan.
While introducing the Objective Resolution in the Constituent Assembly, Prime Minster Liaquat Ali Khan declared that the sovereignty belongs to Allah, the Merciful, And the State would not remain neutral as that would violate the very idea on the basis of which a separate homeland for the Indian ummah was demanded by the Muslim League. Hence, the name Pakistan, the land of the pure.
Army Rules the Roost: The assassination of Liaquat Ali Khan was followed by the rule of Army in Pakistan. In the seventy years of its existence, Pakistan has been ruled most of the time by the military junta. Effective civilian rule is passé. Even today, all substantive issues and their settlement requires the prior approval of the Army brass. No wonder some European scholars have compared the Army's position and power in Pakistan to that of the Prussian Army in Europe.
Anatol Liven in his article Understanding Pakistan's Military, (2010), quoted by Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri, says: Voltaire remarked of Frederick the Great's Prussia that “Where some states have an army, the Purssian Army has a state”. In view of the sheer size and effectiveness of the Pakistan military and associated institutions compared to the rest of the state, much the same could be said of Pakistan.
Destruction of Pakistan: Until about 1960, Pakistani leadership propagated a bogey that India wished to destroy Pakistan. Accordingly, Pakistan's membership of the various defense pacts -SEATO, CENTO etc-was justified on the ground that these would ensure integrity and unity of Pakistan. Same sort of arguments are now advanced by Pakistan when someone questions Pakistan's gifting away of a part of Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) territory to China.
Kashmir Dispute: The dispute was born with the birth of Pakistan. Initially, Pakistan claimed Kashmir on the basis of religion; this was the basis on which British India was divided. Ignoring The Stand Still Agreement with the ruler of J & K, Pakistan had invaded Kashmir in October, 1947. The attempt to wrest Kashmir through force failed because in the meanwhile the ruler acceded to India. However, since then Pakistan has fought four wars with India to capture Kashmir but without any success.
Back Channel Negotiations: A few days ago, a book entitled Neither A Hawk Nor A Dove by Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri; foreign minister in the government of President Musharraf was released in Delhi. During the course of an interview, Kasuri stated that a Draft Agreement to solve the Kashmir issue had been finally agreed during his tenure and it only required the signatures of the competent authorities. As far as Pakistan was concerned, no agreement could be sold to the people of Pakistan unless the vast majority of Kashmir accepted it. Kasuri had marathon sessions with the leaders of Indian Administered Kashmir (IAK) and was convinced that the people of J& K had suffered the most.
Contours of draft agreement on Kashmir
Demilitarization: All Kashmiris wanted that Indian troops be with drawn from their populated areas. Pakistan, in its negotiations, with India had insisted on demilitarization. After protracted negotiations, it was agreed that a major reduction of armed forces would be carried out gradually by both sides. …. the understanding was that India would make the lives of Kashmiri's more bearable by withdrawing its troops initially from population centers. And Pakistan would exert moral pressure on those who are engaged in crossing the Line of Control (LOC) from Azad Kashmir. This meant non-state actors.
Self-Governance: The issue of self-governance was largely emotive with the Kashmiris. The Instrument of Accession, dated 26, October 1947 assigned to the Government of India, only Defense, External Affairs and Communications. Article 370 represented a solemn pact.
The Kashmiris were bitter that this solemn pact had been broken by India. The Article was designed to ensure self-governance in practice and it was abused by Government of India to no end. It is necessary that the people of Kashmir should be given back the powers of which they had been deprived for nearly sixty years and that there be effective guarantees against repetition of the past. It was agreed on both sides, India and Pakistan, that the level of self governance would be the same on both sides of J&K (IOK & POK).
Elections: Under the proposed agreement, guaranteed self-governances would remove the complaint of Kashmiri leaders that elections were rigged in the past.
Defining Units of Kashmir: The proposed agreement provided that there would be two units-one under the control of Pakistan and the other under India as at present. The Governments of India and Pakistan could be free to have more than one administrative region under its control.
Joint Mechanism: The Kashmiris had made it clear to the Pakistanis that in their reaction that they did not want a solution which would permanently separate them from their brethren across the LOC. Through Joint Mechanism, Kashmiris, on both sides would cooperate in specified areas of mutual interest where Indians and Pakistanis would be present.
Common Policies Towards Development and Water Resources: The Joint Mechanism was to encourage the promotions of common policies towards the development of infrastructure, hydroelectricity and water resources. Water poses existential threats to Pakistan since two-thirds of its population relies on water from rivers coming through Kashmir. Foreign experts have predicted a future war between India and Pakistan on the question of water. Thus Joint Mechanism aims at encouraging cooperation in all areas.
Monitoring and Review Process: The Foreign Ministers of India and Pakistan would monitor the progress of the agreement and a review will be undertaken after the expiration of fifteen years.
Treaty of Peace, Security and Friendship: It was argued by Pakistan that European countries who fought wars against one another in the 20the century have signed treaties of peace and friendship. France and Germany is a case in point. Draft Agreement on J &K would be followed up by a Treaty of Peace, Security and Friendship between India and Pakistan
Line of Control: The experience of wars fought on the issue of Kashmir have made India and Pakistan realize that (i) Jammu and Kashmir cannot be made independent; (ii) borders cannot be redrawn (iii) Line of Control can and should be made irrelevant; (iv) and a Joint Mechanism for both parts of Kashmir can be worked out. Joint Mechanism is essential because Pakistan could not just accept the status quo. Pakistan was in no position to compromise on the aspirations of the people of Kashmir.