If you want me to think like a “realist,” let me concede at the outset that Article 370 of the Indian Constitution never provided any security and solace to mass of people in Occupied Kashmir, condemned to live under relentless oppression since 1947.

Yet, it existed on paper, kept the reality of Occupied Kashmir as an unresolved dispute alive and helped in exposing an endless list of broken promises that India had been making, both to Kashmiris and the international community.

Monday morning, the insanely majoritarian and Hindutava-driven Modi government formally announced to scrap the said article.

The announcement came after more than ten days of massive deployment of fresh troops in the occupied valley and nonstop flow of rumors, triggering and perpetuating chaos and insecurity on both sides of the Line of Control on Kashmir.

An overwhelming number of Pakistanis felt rightfully upset about this announcement. Many also braved the pain of worrying about “what next?”

The anxiety-ridden citizens of this country certainly deserved some words of solace from their government on this gloomy day.

The national assembly was scheduled to meet at 4pm, anyway, and stupid me seriously imagined that the Prime Minister or the Foreign Minister might stand up to read a carefully drafted statement at the outset of Monday sitting.

Then, the house could be adjourned; on grounds that a joint sitting of both the houses of parliament had already been fixed for Tuesday morning. Imran government will furnish a well-thought-out reaction to India’s scrapping of  Article 370, at the end of a comprehensive discussion.

No one cared to do the needful. One kept waiting for the House to start for around two hours.

While waiting for the House to start, we were given to believe that on an “ominous day,” the “selfish” opposition legislators were not willing to attend the Monday sitting.

After much dilly-dallying the Speaker had signed orders to facilitate presence of at least three national assembly members, currently spending time in NAB’s custody or in judicial remand, in House proceedings.

Asif Ali Zardari, Khawaja Sa’ad Rafique and Shahid Khakhan Abbassi were expected to attend the Monday sitting after signing of these orders. But keepers of the said legislators were hesitant to comply with orders of their production. “In protest,” the opposition opted to stay out of the House.

One is yet not sure about the authenticity of the said story, spread in whispers to explain the causes of delay. But even if the said story was true, the government should have proceeded with Monday’s sitting, come what may.

Before reading the statement that I was expecting, a minister could explain as to why the opposition preferred to stay out on a very important day. That would rather have exposed its “slavish devotion” to “corrupt leaders.”

Even if the government was reluctant to commence with the national assembly sitting, for whatever reasons Monday, the opposition should have rushed to the House in full strength to force an official response to India’s decision of scrapping Article 370.

Lest you forget, India has announced scrapping of the said article from the floor of a house of its parliament, i.e., Rajya Sabha.  By Tuesday evening, the said house is almost set to approve it.

From the floor of the national assembly of Pakistan, therefore, our initial response should have come Monday evening.

But for unknown reasons, Imran government wantonly disregarded the importance of messaging through the parliament. The opposition behaved equally reckless.

Immediately after completion of the opening rituals of a 2-hour-delayed sitting, the Deputy Speaker read a rhetorical statement to finally inform that a joint parliamentary sitting had been summoned on Tuesday.

The sitting will comprehensively discuss the scrapping of article 370 by India. He was thus adjourning the Monday sitting.

After missing the opportunity of timely reacting from an appropriate forum: the national assembly of Pakistan, lead stars from both the government and the opposition would now indulge in bombastic speechmaking during the two sessions of the joint parliamentary sitting, scheduled to start from Tuesday.

I fail to imagine a workable strategy developing during the forthcoming sittings, igniting the hope that India could be forced to back out from its decision of scrapping article 370.

Fast track developments throughout the past ten days had loudly been suggesting that India was set to scrap the said article. We didn’t see our government doing anything substantive, and on SOS basis, to prevent it.

Appropriate space and the context were surely available to us, if we really cared to move.

After all, during his 47-minute presser that President Trump had shared with Prime Minister Imran Khan at the White House on July 22, the US President had clearly expressed the desire to mediate for resolution of the Kashmir issue.

He even claimed that during a recent meeting with him in Osaka, the Indian Prime Minister had also asked him to play a role in this respect.

Narendar Modi has, so far, preferred to keep quiet, although his foreign minister politely denied the story told by Trump.

I seriously believe that during the heat of rumors that prepared the world for scrapping of article 370, triggered due to massive deployment of troops in Occupied Kashmir, Prime Minister Imran Khan should have tried hard to establish contact with President Trump.

That was the perfect time for clearly conveying it to the US that by scrapping article 370, India would ignite chaos. Further deepening the mistrust between India and Pakistan, the anticipated scrapping might lead to another war among the archrivals of South Asia.

For sure, President Trump would hate to see things turning chaotic between India and Pakistan these days. He is too keen to get his country “extricated” from Afghanistan, after not being able to clearly win an 18-year long war there.

Pakistan is wiling to help the US in getting out of Afghanistan. Zalmay Khalilzad, the US emissary on Afghanistan, has come almost close to reaching an agreement with Taliban. Pakistan’s role in orderly execution of the expected agreement would remain crucial for many months to come.

By ruthlessly scrapping article 370 and building up the war like appearances on the Line of Control on Kashmir, India has been recklessly trying to divert Pakistan’s attention. President Trump could have been motivated to prevent it with active intervention.

It now is the duty of our opposition legislators that instead of wasting time in bombastic speeches, they stay focused to find it from the government as to why it hesitated to approach President Trump, when Modi government was almost loud and brazen to prepare the world for scrapping of article 370 during the past ten days.