Time To Take Call on Kashmir
Both centre and state leadership has to be on the same page to work together with focus on the affairs of the Jammu and Kashmir State rather than their own predispositions
Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s four day visit to J&K State has reinforced PM’s 15 August message to reach out to embrace Kashmiris with love. The visit has set at rest the fears about the tinkering with Article 370 and Article 35-A of the Constitution of India as applicable to Jammu and Kashmir State. HM Rajnath Singh met scores of delegations both in Kashmir and Jammu and also intensely assessed the security scenario with the top brass of Government, the Army and other security and police leadership and a visit to turbulent Anantnagh.
How the people have reacted — CM said she welcomes the presser of HM and demanded the implementation of Agenda of Alliance, as if her partner BJP is an obstruction. Governor Vohra largely reacts by his silence that is how he is there, as interlocutor for 4 years without any report in public domain and Governor for 9 years after being a director of prestigious IIC of which he recently became President to replace Country’s top legal eagle Soli Sorabjee. Political class cynical response — Delhi not sincere it will go on like this. Separatists despondent as usual with trumpet of trust-deficit and condemnation of the harshness of NIA. Civil society despair and helplessness. Militants -Shoot & scoot and at times surrender. Media in Catch -22 situation and people are in to be or not to be situation.
Former PM Manmohan Singh led Congress Party delegation met with many delegations of Kashmiris and assured people of their Party’s support to all the efforts of peace process.
*Jammu & Kashmir consisted of its distinct entities in five separate regions with nothing common with each other. The hill areas of Gilgit, Baltistan and Skardu and the Punjabi-speaking areas of Muzzaferabad etc; are with Pakistan. In Indian part of the State, there are three divisions- namely;-Hindu dominated Jammu;,Suni Muslim dominated Kashmir with Shia community ,the Pandits ,Sikhs and Gujjar communities,and Buddhist and Shia populated Ladakh.
*Great leadership in the past with great efforts integrated these diverse divisions as the mosaic of different ethnic, religious and tribal groups and united these together in a culture of mutual tolerance and creative interaction as a plural and democratic JKState. Unfortunately it has got engulfed in the worst phase of militancy, intolerance
and distortion by the self-serving myths of competing political interests.
*Currently unlike past, when Kashmir used to enjoy the glory of peace and rich civilizational plural ethos popularly known KASHMIRIYAT , the situation in Kashmir is;the radicalisation is taking over the SocioPolitical discourse and gaining greater appeal and the pro Pakistan narrative which was noticeably very weak, has also become strong. the recruitment of local boys in the ranks of militancy is phenominally on the rise.The new age youth and students are up in protest against the very Idea of India and democratic process in the Valley.The young innocent lives and armed forces personnel are lost on a daily basis. The political space of main stream polity has shrunk. Democracy is in peril and the attempt to delegitimize the idea of India in Kashmir is galore.
*Faced with the continuing death and destruction unleashed by mercenaries, the non-State actors since 1989, the colossal sufferings of the large components of Kashmir society, the Muslims and the Kashmiri Pandits in exile and almost a generation in the grave yards:, Yet the Kashmiri population at the societal levels has the sense and understanding that; “Radiclised Separatism “can not be and is not the option” and “resolution of all the issues lies through a negotiated peaceful dialogue process”
PDP-BJP State Govt. Will be losing its plot in Kashmir,if the hot Military pursuit is not blend with regular dialogue with the stakeholders including the agitationist youth. Top military brass,the security forces,the political class,the civil society and peace loving citizenry of the Country and JK State are voiceing such opinions for quite some time.I have been consistently writing the columns and in my humble way as an incorrigible optimistic Kashmiri,am voicing the peace agenda with Presidents,PM,HM ,the Congress and other political parties and in the international as well with domestic relevant forums.
*The revival of militant activity in the state and elsewhere is a serious issue and a reminder that the militant outfits are spread, present and active to strike any time and anywhere. The youth in anger joining the militant ranks is hugely disturbing phenomenon, public support to militancy had considerably reduced but it has surfaced with renewed vigour. The phenomenon of terror, panic and disinformation is back in the valley. Security scenario, inwardly is not very assuring. The security forces and JK police are doing their best,still the militancy is on the big rise.Huge participation in the funerals of the slain militants is worrying,It reflects the people”s subtle if not the express support to the revival of militancy.There is no centrally organised command of local terror groups they operate like criminal gangs and Pakistan is able to coordinate these gangs. They seem to gloat about their achievements on social media rather than displaying any radical commitment.
The current turmoil and Loss of innocent lives on daily basis has imperiled “Democracy and Human Rights .Kashmiris at societal level are sick of death and destruction phenomenon and are profusely yearning for peaceful and secured life and liberty for the current and future generations.
*”Country’s strategic and constitutional interest lies in the welfare of people of Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh and not in land alone”. As such Country has to initiate the peace process through meaningful dialogue.Rajnath Singh the HM,has reinforced PM MODI”S message of embracing Kashmiris with love, by his visit and meetings with people.There appears to be larger political support of all parties for the peace initiatives in turbulent Valley. Therefore HM’s open invite to all the stakeholders including those who have not been so far part of mainstream polity their own political reasons,is a big opportunity for the Kashmiris to earnestly pick up peace agenda.
Such leadership has in the past met PMs Vajpayee & Manmohan Singh,HMs Advani and P Chitambaran.They were allowed to visit Pakistan and talk to Pakistan civil & military leadership.As publicly stated by past PMs and HMs they were requested to come up with a solution module to resolve Kashmir imbroglio that could be acceptable to all the stakeholders. The leadership never reverted back to Country’s leadership nor did it ever work out any talks module at least nothing is in in public domain.Their retroric,dithering ,political ambiguity and flip flop is costing dear to all Kashmiris.
Now there is yet another opportunity at their door steps and it is for them to rise to the occasion and respond to current PM and HM’s call and invite.
It is the talks and talks alone that will lead to ironing out the issues and solutions will follow.in the best interests of all concerned.” Enough is enough”. Kashmiri people alone can resolve the “K “Imbraglio. “Dispute resolution is a fine art and Kashmirs are fine artisans”.
Therefore,It is for the Kashmiri Leadership that claims to represent the turbulent sentiment of the Valley and others groups to shun their taboos,pool ideas and aspirations of all the communitiestheir and come up with a road-map for talks in the best interests of the people.