Friday, February 18, 2011

J&K-Delhi and Autonomy; let there be open debate By Daya Sagar

J&K-Delhi and Autonomy; let there be open debate
By Daya Sagar

September 5, 2010 • 4:48 pm
The author is a social activist and leading columnist on J and K Affairs
J&K-Delhi and Autonomy; let there be open debate

By Daya Sagar

No doubt in Jammu and Kashmir National Conference is the largest political party that can dare standing for India against the anti India and anti accession ideologies . But so far New Delhi has not been true even in listening to National Conference that has so far held so firmly to the 1947 accession of JK with India.

Particularly after 1989 the local Kashmiri has discussed and heard very less about the truthfulness of the October 1947 accession of JK with India. Rather they have heard / read more of statements on alleged injustice to Kashmiries done after 1947, more of conditional 1947 accession, more of some special agreements made by Nehru / Indira Gandhi with Sheikh Mohd Abdullah and commitments made by Delhi leaders with Kashmiries. Similarly there are many youth in thirtees, who have all these years remained at distance from the information and ideologies that prove truthfulness and fairness of the governments that held reins at New Delhi. Write-ups that appear in local press and journals too are wanting in this regards {particularly more since last one decade }.

Dr. Farooq Abdullah had on 11th June, 1999 narrated that an elder person had said to him at Kargil on 10th June, 1999 “Udhar Jana Hai Aur Apni Territory Waapis Laana Hai.” Speaking at “Bahu Plaza Jammu” Farooq Abdullah said “1971 Mein To Main Chhota Tha Par Agarche Mein Kabhi Bhi Bee Yudh Nahin Chahta Par Agar Pakistan Ne Apnae Ko Sudhara Nahin to Yudh Hoga Aur “Iss Baar Koi Haji Peer Wapis Nahin Denge, LoC-LoC-Kush Nahin Rahnewali, Ab Ki Baar Jang Hogi Toe Kuchh Wapis Nahin Denghe”. Similarly while addressing a function of the “Keep Jammu Clean Programme” at Press Club Jammu on 5th Oct, 1999 Dr Farooq Abdullah pointing at Hurriyat leaders had said ,”They can kill me but they can’t take Kashmir. If one Farooq goes another Farooq will come to protect the Mother Land. I will break their back-bone to protect the integrity of the nation”. He had gone to the extent of saying that Hurriyat leaders would not be allowed to exploit the religious sentiments of the people, rather Hurriyat leaders would be sent to the Jodhpur jail. Many would have wondered why so much of change in 2010? The answer did lie in my recent columns where in I have said that some soft statements of Farooq Abdullah are surely made under local political pressures that have endangered even political existence of National Conference particularly in Kashmir Valley.

To me it is not only since 11th June, 2010 that people of Kashmir valley in particular and JK in general are in emotional, psychological, identity, social, political and material turmoil but the agony of people of Jammu and Kashmir due to emotional and psychological stresses dates much back even from late 1980s. No doubt it has grown so more after 1990 due to non serious approach of New Delhi. In my writings over last one decade I have been making attempts to draw the attention of New Delhi towards the ground needs but no heed was paid. The questions, doubts and demands in the minds of the common man have to be attended to, answered, cleared or accepted or dropped with due reasoning and justifications and not by force. And if the mental / information and emotional issues are not settled properly, peace would never return. The information bank of common man of Kashmir valley has been left unattended by New Delhi and has instead been left to be addressed more by those who doubted the trueness of 1947 accession of JK with India.

Dr. Farooq Abdullah’s outburst in Indian Parliament has not been new. But this time he has been emotionally emotional. He has begged with folded hands for peace, truthfulness and rational approach towards the Jammu and Kashmir affairs from New Delhi There is enough for Indian leaders to take leads, if not from the person of Farooq Abdullah, atleast from what he so vocally said on the floor of Lok Sabha on 26th August. No doubt it is a hard reality that Farooq Abdullah is the tallest pro-India and pro-accession leader that JK has this day.

I would quote some valued links from what Dr. Farooq Abdullah pleaded in Lok Sabha: “Today, I am surprised that nobody has talked about Kashmir under Pakistan occupation which they call Azad Kashmir, nobody talked about Northern Areas of Gilgit Baltistan and Skardu, nobody talked about the territory Pakistan gave away to China,” “it was the time to tell Pakistan “in one voice that it should return to us the part of Kashmir it has occupied and given away to China”. “Kashmir has not acceded to India by force… It chose to become a part of India belonging to Gandhi and Nehru,” ” Jammu and Kashmir had not joined the Indian Union due to threat of bullets or any other force , but the decision was swayed by the principles of Mahatama Gandhi and then Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru” if Kashmir has to remain an integral part of India “you will have to open your hearts to us”. .”But today, I regret that when we open our hearts to you, you don’t even recognise us”. Every corner of our heart has India written over it. ” Hindhustan is in our hearts and there is no machine available today that can open our hearts and show that our sentiments are with Hindustan” “When we brought the autonomy resolution, I thought we will join hearts. But you let me down,” “Vajpayee told me he had not even read the autonomy. I pleaded before him to read it as it is all well within the ambit of the constitution,” “You have to win the hearts of Kashmiris…People who have laid down their lives don’t want jobs or money. They want justice,” “Dil Pe Raj Karna Hai Zameen Pe Nahin”. ” Most Kashmiries want to find a solution to the problems within India…not in Pakistan, China or America. We want Jammu and Kashmir of Raja Hari Singh”. ” Those in Kashmir demanding Azadi have not realised the consequences of such a demand ….”

Dr Farooq Abdullah did not end there itself , he even shed the appeasement policy that politicians these days carry towards the media men when he dared to opine that the role of media in the Kashmir Valley was disappointing and some newspapers published from Srinagar were adding fuel to the fire; and pleaded to the journalists sitting in media galleries to be objective and report facts from the Kashmir Valley.

Next day Sayeed Ali Shah Geelani reacted so quickly by challenging Farooq Abeullah to walk in Lal Chowk for just five minutes and suggested New Delhi for holding referendum in case what Farooq has said is to be believed. The reactions from leaders like Chairperson of Dukhtaran-e-Millat, Syeda Aasiya Andrabi, Chairman of Hurriyat Conference (M) Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front chairman Muhammad Yaseen Malik could be no different. I see what Geelani has said not a challenge to Farooq Abdullah but a challenge to Man Mohan Singh and his government. But what impact Dr. Farooq could create on the Indian Parliament has still not come worth quoting here.

Last I had made some suggestions to Dr Farooq on 15th Dec, 2007 as regards NC’s AUTONOMY / Autonomy Resolution of JK Assembly. No “response” did come. Benefits of Autonomy within Indian Constitution need be spelled to those who oppose it .In case National Conference feels that Autonomy Resolution of J and K Assembly (2000) can bring some peace and prosperity to the people of J and K, let him carry the contents of the Autonomy also for discussions at the grass root levels in all the three regions of the State. Let there be Niabat level seminars if not Panchayat level. Otherwise only thing that would be inferred would be that National Conference simply wants to use the slogans of Autonomy to lure the innocent common masses of Kashmir Valley not for common good but for simply fleecing them for securing power reigns. Open objections from Jammu and Ladakh Regions for return to some thing like pre 1953 position are raised and many people from these regions even want total integration into Indian Constitution ( even abrogation of article 370). Such living controversies are surely not in the larger interest of the people of J and K. Otherwise one day J and K State will have to be reorganised under its own Constitution into smaller units.
Government of India too needs to spell out very clearly the objections it has to the 2000 Autonomy Resolution of JK Assembly.

All these years the political leadership in J and K has not suffered that much ( they have both personal security and power cover for them) but common man has badly suffered. 

(The author is a social activist and leading columnist on J and K Affairs).

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