Who Opposed Delhi Agreement and Why

The Delhi Agreement, signed on July 28, 1972, was a significant moment in the history of India-Pakistan relations. It signaled a decision to end hostilities between the two countries, as well as a commitment to resolve territorial and border disputes through peaceful means. However, not everyone was in favor of this agreement. In this article, we will explore who opposed the Delhi Agreement and why.

The Delhi Agreement was signed by Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and Pakistani President Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. The agreement aimed to resolve the long-standing territorial dispute over the region of Jammu and Kashmir. Under the terms of the agreement, both countries agreed to respect the Line of Control as the de facto border between them, and to work towards a peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue.

While the Delhi Agreement was widely praised as a significant step forward for peace in the region, there were some who opposed it. One of the most prominent opponents was Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah, the former Prime Minister of Indian-administered Kashmir. Abdullah believed that the agreement did not address the concerns of the people of Kashmir, who had been fighting for independence or integration with Pakistan since the partition of India in 1947.

Abdullah`s opposition was based on the belief that the Delhi Agreement did not grant the Kashmiri people the right to self-determination, which was their fundamental demand. He saw the agreement as a betrayal of the Kashmiri people and called for a referendum to determine the region`s future. Abdullah`s opposition was particularly significant given his status as a popular leader in Kashmir.

Another prominent opponent of the Delhi Agreement was the Jamaat-e-Islami party in Pakistan. The party believed that the agreement represented a betrayal of the Muslim people of Kashmir, who they saw as being denied their right to self-determination. Jamaat-e-Islami also objected to the fact that the agreement recognized the Line of Control as the de facto border between India and Pakistan, arguing that this meant ceding territory to India.

In addition to these specific objections, some critics of the Delhi Agreement saw it as a sell-out to India, particularly given the power dynamics between the two countries. Pakistan was seen as having been forced to accept the agreement due to its relative weakness vis-a-vis India, which had become more powerful since the 1965 Indo-Pakistani War.

In conclusion, while the Delhi Agreement was hailed as a significant moment in India-Pakistan relations, it was not without its critics. Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah and the Jamaat-e-Islami party in Pakistan opposed the agreement on the grounds that it did not address the fundamental issue of Kashmiri self-determination. Other critics saw the agreement as a symbol of Pakistan`s relative weakness and as a betrayal of the Muslim people of Kashmir. Despite these objections, the Delhi Agreement remains an important landmark in the fraught history of India-Pakistan relations.