Kashmir: The ‘azaadi’ road to slavery

The security of well over a billion Indians cannot be jeopardised by the short-sighted suicidal attitude of a misguided few who espouse the Kashmiri secessionist cause

The recent events regarding sedition, azaadi and similar slogans espoused by Sajjad Gani Lone and his ilk in Kashmir fail to take some basic facts into account.

Let people of India which includes J&K, roll back to 1947 when the marauders aided by Pakistani paramilitary forces invaded J&K and came up to Baramulla.

How they razed the nunnery there and how they tortured and killed the nuns is part of history. For Pakistan, this is an unfinished story. If Lone takes into account what is happening in Pakistan today he will see that the Shia sect and the Sufis of Pakistan have been systematically targeted and killed by the Sunni-dominated majority in the army and the administration.

The Muslims of Kashmir are quite different from the Sunnis of Pakistan. They are gentler, more cultured and similar to the Sufis. Is it difficult to imagine the fate of the Kashmiri Muslims under the tutelage of the Sunnis of Pakistan? It will be the irony of ironies if in the name of azaadi, they walk into the Sunni trap from which they cannot escape and will have to be reconciled to be treated as slaves and subordinate citizens for all time.

Do the Kashmiris really want this one-way road to slavery in Pakistan instead of the special treatment they are now getting in India? This is what the interloculators should put to the separatist groups in Kashmir.

Secondly, even if the Muslims want to form part of the Sunni hegemony, what about the other religious groups in J&K and particularly the four lakh Kashmiri Pandits who have as much right as the Muslims to reside in their state? Surely they have a right to be part of Kashmir — in India.

Why should India not press for the return of these people to Kashmir?

Thirdly, the right of secession does not belong to any constituent group. At the time of Independence, there were over 500 states which had acceded to India under Instruments of Accession similar to that of Kashmir. There is no reason why J&K should be treated differently from other states.

There are ten times more Muslims in India than in Kashmir and they are well-integrated with the rest of the population, allowing for some misguided persons toeing the Pakistani line.

Fourthly, the rest of India has to have a say in the matter. They have sacrificed over 20,000 lives and spent over Rs20,000 crore over all these years in defending J&K.

The price for all this should not be the real danger to India’s security with the Pakistanis sitting over the enslaved population across the border. And let us not forget the Chinese who are close allies of Pakistan. If they are now in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (POK) in the thousands, they will swarm into the valley under the guise of aiding them in various projects.

In fact, no one will dispute the fact that if India withdraws its army from Kashmir within the next two weeks, 2,000 terrorists waiting across the border, aided openly by the Pakistani army, will overrun Kashmir and enslave the people of Kashmir.

Is this why the people of India sacrificed their young men and spent thousands of crores over all these years to keep out the Pakistanis?
   
And what happens to Nagaland and Mizoram if they also want to follow Kashmir? They will come under the tutelage of the Chinese in no time.

No part of India can secede without the rest of India acceding to the proposal. Will the rest of India agree that Kashmiris alone should decide as to where they should belong? Should not the safety and territorial security of India be a major consideration even for the Kashmiris who talk of secession?

It is time that these implications of the azaadi groups’ demand are explained frankly and fully to everyone and in all of India. The security of India of over a billion people cannot be jeopardised by the short-sighted suicidal attitude of the Kashmiris.

Will the interlocutors explain all this to the Kashmiris? Will all the other political parties explain all this to the people of India so that they can deal with all those who espouse the secessionist cause at the hustings? The political map of India can then change and our approach to J&K can be more purposeful and helpful to the gentle — though misguided — people of the beautiful valley.

(The writer is former SEBI chairman, former chairman-Disinvestment Commission and former member, Planning Commission of India)

Comments
Er S C Thukral
1 decade ago
It should have been the first priority to deal with those Indian people who spread hate, instigate people to revolt for armed conflict like Andhurita Roy geelani and others without any cause taking undue advanyages of Indian democracy softenness and tolerance of Indian public, pose security risk for the country Govt.is bound to take actioin under law, internal threat is more serious than external country must realise this
shiraz
1 decade ago
RNandakumar
1 decade ago
The only solution for Kashmir problem is its integration with India. For that first divide Kashmir into effective small zones and appoint a Lt.Col as in charge and administer it through the army giving no scope for any interfereance from Politicians. Declare curfew for six months restricting people's movement only in specific areas. Instead of bullet Army could use water cannon to quell mob frenzy if any. Finally bring 2or3 lakh voluntiers from various parts of India belonging to different relegions and settle them in all the zones formed. If the above suggestions are not possible send Modi from Gujarat and make him the CM there.
shiraz
Replied to RNandakumar comment 1 decade ago
Fascists of India.... Likes of you shall bring its demise sooner than expected. When people like you write stuff like that it makes the resolve of Kashmiris harder and harder. Modi who should have been tried for crimes against humanity will turn into a Fodi fuddu in Kashmir and your security forces have already tried your tactics.... didn't work.
Good luck any way.
shadi katyal
Replied to shiraz comment 1 decade ago
one often notices that when Pakistani/Muslims loose their arguments, they start with abusive words like fascist and worst. Why Mr. shiraz you can continue to argue but must have some substance and not abuses.
Pakistan tried 3 wars and Kargill and got the reply.She tried terrorist attacks but got no where and now same terrorist groups are killing your own every weak. Time to first restore your own nation.
BBC or any other broadcasting doesn't know the ground reality. Dont forget British always favored Pakistan and were the creator of it.
I suggest you should compare development of both nations.India is not living on the charity of US and Zakaat money.
We need peace and it will benefit all.
RNandakumar
Replied to shiraz comment 1 decade ago
When muslims of other parts of India find peaceful co-ehistance possible why shoud Kashmiris think that they are very special. Christians or Budhists or Parsies are not demanding Azadi. A Nehruvian mistake need be corrected. Gujarat muslims recently have demonstrated their secularistic opinion in panchayat and municipal polls. Start thinking as an Indian first then you will be alright from your present fever.
shiraz
Replied to RNandakumar comment 1 decade ago
It would have been so much better if Indians would have stayed under British rule.All Indians would have be forced to think that they are British first and they would have been alright from any fever.... Kashmiris are Kashmiris just as Indians could never be British!!
Check out the BBC link i posted earlier... and enlighten yourself with the reality you will have to face very soon.
R Nandakumar
Replied to shiraz comment 1 decade ago
The whole problem with you that you have schizophernia. You are under the illusion that Kashmir is not in India. Europe have started implimenting uniform civil code more strictly now not allowing special muslim dresses. But for Nehru's family India too would be by now truely secular. Once Congress realises their past mistake then elements like you will fall silent.
shiraz
Replied to R Nandakumar comment 1 decade ago
Go through this and ask yourself " Are you worth the salt"
http://news.bbc.co.uk/today/hi/today/new...
http://news.bbc.co.uk/today/hi/today/new...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cOzgPEb0a...
Don't go beyond your borders. Stop talking about Europe and other countries. Put your house in order.
RNandakumar
Replied to shiraz comment 1 decade ago
The problem you have is that your mind is already made up of views and you do not want to be confused with facts of present day life. BBC as a mouth piece of British is bound to splash misinformation as it is envoious of India, a one time slave of it, is posing competetion to it. In You Tube any video could be posted. Contact your fellow muslims of Turkey or Iraque to know what they think of Islamic rulers of Pakistan to whom you seem to be very fond of.
shadi katyal
1 decade ago
It is evident that most of pro Pakistani are talking only for their cause. They had been brain washed from childhood.Why dont they talk that how Pakistan govt took Millions of Dollars for Kashmir earth quack and 60% or more never reached the sufferers. Is this what Kashmir wants ??
Kashmir educated and well of are out of the state because of this continents terrorist attacks by Pakistani trained terrorist. A very small minority has made the life of majority a living hell.
I dare to challenge let us compare the development of both sides of Kashmir?
Every Friday prayer meetings in some part of Pakistan is bombed and this killing goes on but pro Pakistan being even one killing by police as a rule of terror. They forget that if you break the Law you pay. Stone pelting is as dangerous as bullets as they both kill .Did these misled children not learned from similar situation from Palestine.
India should allow all Indians to settle them in Kashmir as Pakistan did from very first day and thus the peace.
faiz
1 decade ago
Ravindra Shetye makes a good point I live in Azad Kashmir pakistani controlled Kashmir.
We don't what theft is let alone murder.
But still the best future for Kashmir is Independent Kashmir.
Shiraz
1 decade ago
Kashmiris are talking about accession that never happened because India occupied Kashmir.Kashmiris got rid of the Dogra Chieftian from the front door but the wolves from India entered and occupied Kashmir from the back door.
It is so bothersome to hear about a few nuns and the razing of a nunnary in 1947 but no one talks about the 2,37,000 muslims of Jammu who were massacred.
There is no justification for India to hold onto Kashmir by mere brute force. For any civilized country which itself was enslaved for centuries, it is difficult to comprehend the logic.
Ravindra Shetye
Replied to Shiraz comment 1 decade ago
Khan's brother. Same advice as Khan. Migrate to Pakistan and experience the 'azadi' as long as you want.
Shiraz
Replied to Ravindra Shetye comment 1 decade ago
Is that the best you got. Unfortunately that only shows the mindset. Give a reasonable logic, if you have any that would convince the Kashmiris to accede to India.
India has a choice to free Kashmiris on their own accord and ask for forgiveness. May be the Kashmiris would like to accede to India on thier own terms and conditions. The window of opportunity for India is closing very fast.
jim
Replied to Shiraz comment 1 decade ago
Dear Shiraz, The arguments on rape and killings are baseless. We can go on arguing and counter arguing about the number of killings and massacre. But what we need to assess is today's situation. Today Kashmiris are talking about independence, but they forget the question about Independence at what Cost?? will you survive as an independent nation. If that is the idea, then do you think the Pakistan govt. will allow you to survive as independent nation, especially after sponsoring such costly terrorism for all these years. Surely they will want their pound of cheese. If you are thinking of joining Pakistan, then realistically what are you ganing, A terrorist state, Islamic Law state, Shariah Law enforcements, closed mindsets, country which has been declared as terrorist state AND what are you losing, World's growth engine (INDIA), democratic country which respects all religion, best of educational institutes, cost effective healthcare facilities, amazing job and business oppotunities and the list goes on.

So it is for the Kashmiris to decide...
Shiraz
Replied to jim comment 1 decade ago
If you think that denial of the mass killings,massacres,rapes, forced disappearances, razing of houses,torture, shootings, destruction of properties and what not could force the Kashmiris to accept accession... you are sadly mistaken. On the contrary a truth and reconciliation commission and an apology from India could change the way things are in Kashmir.
There is an element in Kashmir which thinks of a merger with Pakistan.No denying that factor. India needs to think in terms of what it is losing by forcibly keeping Kashmir under occupation by sheer force. Half of Indian security forces are deployed in Kashmir to keep it under its military boots. India is not only brutalising Kashmir but creating a monster for itself as well.Let us not talk about religious tolerance in India. There are far too many examples of that.Latest was the saga of Gujarat. In economic terms, it is only 20% of Indians that are enjoying at the cost of the deprived others. Some one can build a house for 2 billion dollars where 40% of the population survives on less than 2 dollars a day. Education is again only for the rich and the elite who can afford to send their children to where ever they like to. Most of them sends their children abroad.Jobs... nepotism, corruption and buglings is the order of the day.
To conclude, Kashmiris would be very happy to conclude an agreement to accede to India on their own terms and conditions but not vice versa. It is their basic human right.
Ravindra Shetye
Replied to Shiraz comment 1 decade ago
You talk about Gujarat. Look what is the voting pattern in the recently concluded elections in Gujarat. Kashmiris need to learn from that rather than going by the instigation of the Pakistanis and supporters like you and Arundhati Roy et all, who are only looking for cheap publicity. Kashmiris have to recall the olden days when they were well off on Indian tourism and the market for their handicrafts in Indian Metropolises. This is exactly what Pak has destroyed to their political benefit but sufferings of Kashmiris. Pak cares too hoots for the Kashmiris sufferings in the process.
Similar thing was taking place in Punjab but the officers like KPS Gill handled it carefully and Punjabis also realised their mistake in time.
Shiraz
Replied to Ravindra Shetye comment 1 decade ago
Well then, when India fought for it's independence from the Brits;it must have been for cheap popularity as well.... It fought for well over 90 yrs from 1857 onwards. Kashmir is not Punjab or the seven sisters of the North east. If Pakistan played it's game, India didn't use it's head. Indians just walked into a death trap because they were on a power trip. India and its security forces thought... well we have subdued the Nagas, the Manipuris, the Assamese, the Sikhs and are still fighting the Maoists in the heartland....let's take on the Kashmiris as well. Instead of respecting Kashmiris, it took away their self esteem, ruined their culture, their ethos by brutalising them and subjecting them to the worst kind of human rights voilations ever on this planet. As i already stated , 80% of Indians can not afford to buy the Kashmiri handicrafts and its fruits nor can they visit Kashmir.
As long as there is so much obduracy on the part of Indians like you who are India's worst enemies; the struggle shall go on. Almost three generations of Kashmiris have seen nothing but the Indian guns and the killings of their near and dear ones. I still stick to my earlier suggestion... let the Kashmiris decide their future with India on their terms or else the future of India and its people would remain bleak and the day will come when their leaders would have to face trials like the Nuremberg ones.
Ravindra Shetye
Replied to Shiraz comment 1 decade ago
Yes Sir. When it comes to the loyalty to the nation that is all I have got. All other arguments are secondary.
shiraz
Replied to Ravindra Shetye comment 1 decade ago
That is indeed very sad and depressive. The biggest democracy in the world with a GDP of over 8%, future economic super power house and all it has is loyalty! Kashmiris are human beings and not dogs....
Ravindra Shetye
Replied to shiraz comment 1 decade ago
You have hit the nail on the head. People like you should convince the Kashmiris that it is in their and the interest of their generations to integrate with a state which the world looks forward to for clues for growth. They are far better off integrating with India than looking for a failed state like Pakistan or look for independence which has no strength, neither economic nor military. They should learn from North Eastern Indian states whose populace is far better of after they adopted peaceful means. Look for any mall in Mumbai or Delhi or Bangalore and you will come across hundreds of North Easterners earning good living and living happily.
M R Borkar
1 decade ago
Sir, what u say is 100% true. This idea of interlocutors and what they have talked is most dangerous to we Indians. The politicians espouse any idea for short term benefits. They want to win an election n sit in Sansad and collect their bounty. How many times we are going to divide this country? Why I cannot own a property in J&K? Why this special statusto J&K? Are the sacrifice of all inocent citizens n JAWANS to be trown down the drain? Why Why Why?- Borkar
Ravindra Shetye
1 decade ago
I entirely agree with the views expressed in the article. Moreover dealing with these kind of separatists needs to be done by the seasoned politicians and not by the naive armchair writers and their ilk. It is obvious from the utterings of the so called interlocutors.
thekashmiris
1 decade ago
Shame India Shame...
Khan
1 decade ago
do you only remember the 20000 Indians who died, what about more than 100000 innocent kashmiri who were brutually killed by the Indian Army, why dont you talk about them, why dont you talk about the rapes by them, anybody rapes your mother or sister how would you feel ? You will still want to be with them ?????
Nagendra
Replied to Khan comment 1 decade ago
Khan, when you can expect Pandits to stay out of Kashmir , it is high time you move to Pakistan.Live your dream for a year or two . Sure you will then realise those were best as dreams, as if you wake up , you will have to live a nightmare.
Shivkumar
Replied to Khan comment 1 decade ago
Why muslims have to see everything thru Islamic lens. Every killing is abominable and should be condemned. But what about the killing of Kashmiri Pandits by militants forcing them to leave the vallery. Where were u and your ilk when such a tragedy had befallen the Kashmiri Pandits, courtesy Pakistan. If you feel so miserable why dont you go to Pakistan and stay there for few months and experience the reality under the Islamic law. Good luck to you.
Ravindra Shetye
Replied to Khan comment 1 decade ago
Mr. Khan,
Are your loyalties with India?. If not please migrate to Pakistan and experience first hand the 'azadi' which the Kashmiris want.
shiraz
Replied to Ravindra Shetye comment 1 decade ago
"Loyalties" ask yourself this question. Are you loyal to the human race first? How can you live with justifying torture, rapes, massacres of innocents.....the list is endless!
Ravindra Shetye
Replied to shiraz comment 1 decade ago
For me the Motherland is first. The human race comes afterwards. Looks like for you the Motherland comes last since you fancy the British rule so much better.
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