Kashmir politicos on the same wavelength

19 Apr 2018 12:51:35

K.N. Pandita

Social media has given extraordinary hype to the heinous crime of alleged rape and murder of a minor girl in the village Rassana in Kathua district. It seems partisan TV channels and electronic media crossed the line of discretion in a bid to garner elusive goodwill of the ethnic community. Vote bank politics is a sickening subject.

BJP higher echelons have fallen in the trap laid out by anti-national elements.  General Secretary Ram Madhav has unwittingly proved his naivety by giving an incoherent and inexperienced interview to electronic media at Jammu on this subject.

Essentially, this is an inter-clannish feud of Bakarwal community in the region. The focal point in the narrative is the narrative related to the murder of the parents of the victimized girl child happened earlier.

The problem with PDP and Congress is that by and large the Gujjars and Bakarwals of J&K have usually pandered to nationalist mainstream politics and not succumbed to the threats or allurements of the ISI sponsored jihadis or the innuendos of Srinagar-based separatists.

The game plan of anti-national elements is to polarize communities in Jammu region. It will be noted that the International Border of Samba-Kathua districts is under regular attacks of Pakistani jihadi infiltrators. They want a link-up with Doda a new route for supply of arms and man power to Kashmir militants.

J&K Chief Minister’s instructions to the police not to force vacation of forest land illegally occupied by the tribal (Gujjar-Bakarwal) people despite court orders to the contrary increased the suspicion of local Hindu community that the government was behaving as partisan to the conspiracy of bringing about a change in the demographic complexion of the district.

People have not forgotten the dubious role of the present and the previous state governments in overlooking the illegal settlement of Rohingya and Bangladeshi immigrants in Jammu. The quick and hassle free issuance of identification-cum-residential documents to these people when compared to 70-year long inconclusive struggle of 1947 refugees from PoK further strengthens the belief of the government working in a partisan manner. This shows that the coalition government led by PDP Chief Minister has no qualms of conscience in shredding Article 370 to pieces.

PDP was born out of the womb of terrorism in Kashmir in 1996. It agreed to a coalition regime with BJP only after receiving green signal from Jamaat-i-Islami to the clauses of Alliance for Accord. The understanding is that once catapulted to the seat of power, PDP would carry forward the ultimate agenda albeit by projecting it as soft State policy in piecemeal.  .

PDP has forged an understanding of sorts both with the separatists and the opposition NC. The demand for the resignation of two identified cabinet rank ministers of BJP originated with Geelani and was forcefully supported by Omar Abdullah. It reminds us of the most vociferous demand for removal of Governor Jagmohan in 1990 made by the then Pak Premier Benazir and then V.P. Singh government in Delhi succumbing to it. The history stands repeated in Kathua case.

Earlier Mehbooba dropped Drabu the finance minister for his statement that Kashmir was not only a political issue. How could Mehbooba stomach Drabu’s statement since she knows that Kashmir projected only a political issue lends legitimacy to her insistence on Indo-Pak talks? Dilution of political factor would mean wrecking the very foundation of PDP’s partnership in government. Amusingly in this she is on the same wavelength with Omar Abdulla, his father Farooq and the Hurriyatis in whose footsteps Farooq (now MP) declared he would be walking henceforth. Ironically, the Modi government cannot think of countering the demand by asking why and what of talks.

‘Operation All Out’ has unnerved the jihadi organizations of Pakistan as well as the ISI. It has impacted state politics. The CM now demands that security operations should be terminated because to use her idiom “our youth are getting martyred.”  In her phraseology a civilian throwing stones on the security forces and supporting the terrorists when confronted by the forces and gets killed is a martyr.  The current situation may be summed up as mobilization of public and harnessing of terrorist violence for the destabilizing of the state. Abetted by the administrative structure Kashmir society seems to have dissolved the terrorist-civilian divide.

 Pragmatic handling of the ongoing situation demands drastic change in the basics of policy on Kashmir. However, given the political chemistry in the country as it is today, one fails to understand why Modi government has left itself with no option but to succumb to the separatists in Kashmir reaching them through aggressive PDP and impotent BJP. PDP has very smoothly managed disintegration of Jammu BJP power house because it has the ability to draw the maximum of leverage from the imbecility of its coalition partner.(The writer is the former Director of the Centre of Central Asian Studies, Kashmir University)       


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