If majority within a province or city opt for secession, they MUST be allowed to decide their own future. Demonizing the ideology of secession (if decided by the majority) is a typical calculating mindset of totalitarian regimes and their firebrand bigoted sycophants.
Valley of Kashmir. Image source The Intuition blog
Ladakh, Kashmir. Image source The Intuition blog.
In January 5,1949 UN affirmed that the accession of Jammu & Kashmir must be through a free and fair referendum (plebiscite), that only the people of this region were entitled to determine their future. But India showed its back to the UN (just as Israel does). Western political history books eager to discreetly favor India have chosen their words ultra carefully to display phony neutrality between India & Pakistan. India's rejection to respect the UN's call for referendum in January 1949 is often ridiculously referred as "differences in interpretation of the procedure for demilitarizing Azad Kashmir Army" by Pakistan & India. Azad Kashmir forces of 1947 made up of retired WW2 veterans of the region that included disciplined platoons & battalions. They fought the first Kashmir war against the Indian army from October 1947 to December 1948. After ceasefire in 1949, Azad Kashmir forces had the same uniforms and designated ranks as the Pakistan army and became its 12th infantry division legally based in Azad Kashmir province (the portion of Kashmir administered by Pakistan). At this time in 1949 the Azad Kashmir forces were NOT fighting the Indian army. It was a period of complete ceasefire and there's NO logical reason why the presence of Azad Kashmir forces should have been an excuse for ignoring a referendum other than India's political obstinacy to evade it. The UN never addressed this issue.
Then, three years later in 1951 ....
to distract the Kashmiri people and the world, India craftily manipulated the situation by calling for "post independence elections" (a modus operandi for maintaining the status quo via installing a puppet provincial rule) within Indian occupied Kashmir, despite knowing that this was NOT what the people of Kashmir were demanding. Consequently the UN reiterated that such an "election" was not a substitute for referendum because it did not allow the Kashmiri people to choose between Pakistan or India nor did it give them the opportunity to establish an independent Kashmiri state. But India ignored the UN (just as Israel does) and held a heavily rigged election. For the people of Kashmir this was nothing but a sick and cruel joke.
Five years later in 1956 came the Kashmir catastrophe ..
when the Indian constituent assembly amended its state constitution self-declaring Kashmir as an "integral part of Indian union" followed by the Indian home minister's visit to occupied province of Jammu & Kashmir asserting that even the question of a referendum didn't arise. A year later in 1957, UN passed a meek little resolution telling India that such a decision would not resolve the problem which of course India's despotic regime didn't even bother to entertain. Hence today, we see hardline Indian nationalists as well as those Indians who are too scared to speak in India's dictatorship (most of whom congregate in online neocon hotspots) persist to reject a referendum claiming Kashmir is "not a monolithic province and it's an integral part of India." Not to mention, at least 85% of Kashmiris are Muslims and the principle ideology of the creation of Pakistan in 1947 was that all provinces of the sub-continent that are geographically contiguous having a Muslim majority must comprise of Pakistan.
An Indian occupying soldier in Kashmir. Image source The Intuition blog.
Indian occupying soldiers in Kashmir beat elderly unarmed man. Image from The Intuition blog.
Injured Kashmiri girl carried by her brother. Image source The Intuition blog