Speak to Kashmiris to resolve the issue

– Vidya Bhushan Rawat

 

Remarkable ‘philosophy’. He thanked the people of Maharashtra and Haryana for ‘posing’ faith in BJP despite the known fact that the arrogant ministers in both the states lost miserably. Now, when all the leaders are in Jail in Jammu and Kashmir, all the major political parties boycotted except for BJP, he is hailing these ‘second’ tier Panchayat elections in J & K as ‘historic’. So, they have everything historic without participation of people. Sad part is that secular rationalists too fall in such trap. If you have heard the speech of a so-called ‘secularists’ who said that her Hindu voice was not allowed in ‘secular’ India during the US Congressional hearing, then listen to the speech made by Dr Natasha Kaul, a Kashmiri expatriate who expose the attempt to divert attention from the real issues. Look at the videos after the hearing and how she was harassed by the KPs there.

The narrative of the Sangh Parivar which are being planted through social media and some time used by the ‘liberals’ are dangerous but it is meant to attract the caste Hindus in rest of the country, to feed them continuously with anti Muslim feeling and divert the entire narrative and issue into a Pakistan sponsored terrorism.

Agreed, Pakistan is responsible for many thing including Islamising the entire Kashmir issue but then arent Kashmiri Pandits responsible for using it to create hatred against Muslims. Question is what has government done to win over the Kashmiris. Does it want Kashmiris to be at its mercy and without any credible political leadership or whether RSS is looking for some Khattar kind of leader in the valley.

If you listen to the entire discussion at the US Congressional hearing where the Congress members countered some of the arguments put forward by Arti Tikku Singh, who has off late become fan of the Sangh Parivar and BJP. Strange are India’s ‘secularists’ who can be swayed by the anti Muslim feeling and who look at Kashmir issue just from the ‘terrorist’ view point and as if there are no other issues except for the infiltration and terrorism. They are the issues and must be dwelt with seriously but can be hide from the fact that the Jammu and Kashmir issue remain to be taken care off and resolved otherwise there will not be peace.

Kashmiri Pandits who have become Pawns in the hands of Hindutva can not discuss Kashmir since 1990 but since it was purchased by Gulab Singh and how the rules were framed, how the King helped cronies to become landowners and why the majority of the Kashmiri Muslims faced discrimination during the Dogra Raj. It is also important and perhaps political historians post independent India can do that, make a chronological history of the power of Kashmiri Pandits vis a vis various prime ministers of India. They always enjoyed protection of the power people. Look from Nehru’s time to Indira Gandhi, there were senior officers of KPs in the PMO. It happened till Rajiv Gandhi. Where are they now but then KPs, it seems, today are totally mesmerized by the ‘Gujarat model’.

Kashmir is not India and Pakistan. It is not merely terrorism. It is people of Kashmir and their will too. We say, it is our ‘internal’ matter. Fair enough but what is internal. If people are unable to go to doctors, remain without newspapers, remain without internet and other communication. Can we keep people out of the courts and judiciary. Can Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmbedabad, Kolkata, Banglore, Hyderabad, Chennai be kept without communication, internet and television services for even a single day ? Can you imagine what will happen if the mobile services are disrupted in these ‘nationalist’ places.

What about the judiciary and media. Did we see any newspaper writing a front page bold news and following it up courageously about the ‘arrest’ of Dr Farooq Abdullah and other leaders. Can anyone say that the Home Minister mislead the Parliament and the Supreme Court but then when the courts are not ready to listen and take their time to allow things happen on its own, you cant expect anything. It will need an A G Noorani to speak the truth to our power, our Courts as we all will fear contempt as well as harassment. I know not all in the media are like that and there are many serious voices but they need to speak up though the space is very little.

For the government and its good wishers, it is important to understand that internationally all these tricks wont work as they are used to in India through desi nationalist media which stand completely exposed today. In this digital age, people have their own sources of information and international media has reported this issue seriously. How can anyone think of a solution of a problem without engaging the local people, media, intellectuals, civil society and political leadership. Kashmir issue is not an issue for you to get benefit in Maharashtra and Haryana. It will have to be solve through participation of local people and not through jumlas and rhetoric that is being produced to you through an absolutely spineless media.

In any democracy, it is people who matter and they are represented through their representatives, civil society, activists, academics, lawyers, journalists, media. All have a stake in it. You cant discuss Kashmir without engaging their media, their activists and their political leadership. Building up narrative through the corrupt and communal media will not help India gain any positive responses on the issue. The only way out is to speak to the people, listen to their voices and allow them have a say in their affairs. Any chest thumping may give you votes elsewhere but not help resolve the issue particularly when India is looking for support on the issue from the international community without wanting to ‘internationalise’ the issue.

Vidya Bhushan Rawat