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Faulty Signals From Kashmir


Satwant Singh Rissam

The summer of 2016 again has seen crisis which kept under curfew for more then 2 months and caused loss of several precious lives. There are many people, by now, in J&K who since their childhood or youth days are hearing about the Kashmir crisis. But something contrary is continuously happening between the ‘people of J&K' and the ‘issue of Kashmir'. On one side the ‘people of J&K' are getting older with every passing day while on the other hand the ‘issue of Kashmir' is getting younger day by day. This suggestion that Kashmir issue is getting young is that crisis keeps coming again and again especially in Kashmir region of J&K after every few years. All those who have grown old while witnessing this Kashmir crisis will agree that the situation seem to stand there only where it started from. This context may not be wrong as Kashmir issue is yet young because Kashmiri people are giving their energy, in one form or other, to keep it in continuity. When we go through the pages of history over Kashmir crisis then we see many political personalities who tried their best to settle Kashmir issue but failed to do so. Let's not just peep into history as we have a future ahead which is needed to be saved.

The era of Nehru-Sheikh, Indira-Bhutto and Vajpayee – Nawaz is over. Surprisingly these names define a very large portion of J&K history, especially relating to Kashmir crisis. Saddest part of this whole history is that nothing came out which could have ended the darkness to add a new bright morning to this issue of Kashmir crisis. But this time the Modi led central government at present has the best opportunity to educate the militants and their think-tanks that Indian portion of Kashmir is a closed chapter. Moreover the Modi led govt came to power with the promises of keeping country safe and united during their campaign in 2014 general elections. Interestingly, the PoK matter has been raised by the present centre govt. in order to put Pakistan on back foot. It is significant to mention here that at present PoK is a burning political issue in after the surgical strikes by the Indian Army in PoK. Presently, this political move has been liked by many, but only time will tell whether this move helps in moving Kashmir out of crisis or it too ends as a political ‘pulse raising method'. Now when such an approach has been raised then Indian government should also start efforts to get vacated the PoK as the whole of PoK is a grabbed land. Moreover, till today India had been slow in its approach towards PoK and now onwards it should gain momentum. Many chapters were witnessed to Kashmir dispute and one such was Accord but even after this accord the Pakistan has never ever changed its approach towards India and always instigated unrest in J&K.

Importantly, the present govt at centre has tremendous numbers in Parliament and can take a decisive stance over Kashmir issue. This fact has been supported by CM Mehbooba Mufti who has recently declared that if Modi govt won't solve the issue of J&K then it won't ever get solved in future. The word of present CM holds a lot of significance as she has witnessed similar situation in 2010 too. In a way she must be going through a small déjà-vu. However now her political role has reversed and all she has to do is work positively and not just blame opponents as she earlier had done. Interestingly, the BJP is an alliance partner in J&K govt and should now undo this whole controversy around the state of J&K. It feels as if the time has come for the BJP to complete the work started by the Shama Prasad Mukherjee. This will be their tribute to him but they have to tread through difficult political structure of country to reach this milestone. If they take certain more steps either with the help of ‘word power' or with the ‘power of strong government' then definitely the ever longing demand of bringing peace to J&K could be achieved.

This unrest of 2016 has reminded us of 2010 as similar situation erupted then also. We need to see that, irrespective of govt of any political party the emotions of Kashmiri people are intact and firm. What all we saw in past more then two months has not built overnight and reflects much more which was witnessed. They seem to carry all this in their minds for last many decades. This time people in Kashmir were so upset that they wanted this unrest to end only when a permanent solution comes to Kashmir problem. For many this vicious cycle of unrest coming after every few years is more harming then a continuous bandh of several months. This hatred with India and the passion for Kashmir issue is seen to be passed socially to all people irrespective of their age and generation. All that is required is to settle their minds which are ignited with passion which make them do so much. It has been witnessed that unrest of 2016 had its impact in Muslim dominated districts of region also. We cannot deny that their sympathizers have penetrated in such areas too which made govt agencies to implement curfew also in some areas and we saw some youth detained under PSA. The signals of unrest are not new but repetition of such signals from Kashmir has started fragmenting the whole state of J&K on social as well religious basis and we need to check that it doesn't tear the fabric of oneness in years to come.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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