Quaint Ironies in Kashmir Politics

Omar Abdullah, the young energetic and upright Chief Minister of Jammu & Kashmir State has belied all hopes and expectations that he would be able to withstand the pressure of the vested interests of separatists and their sympathizers. When he took over, it was hoped of him as a sincere politician to play a more important role at the national level. However, sadly, like Mufti Sayeed and others in the State, he seems to have adopted short-sighted, narrow-vision, populist ways in order to placate disruptionists and stabilize his political clout in the State. He has persisted to persuade the Government of India to grant amnesty to those Kashmiri Muslim youth who crossed the Line of Control and International Border into Pakistan during the last two decades to seek Islamic radical indoctrination and training in subversive techniques and the use of arms.

It is estimated that more than 10000 Kashmiri Muslim youths after their indoctrination in rabid fundamentalism and arms training are stranded in Pakistan due to effective ceiling of borders and deterrent anti-terrorist measures adopted by our security forces. These youth have plans to infiltrate back to instigate armed revolt in the valley and subversion in other parts of the country. It is now believed that Omar has succeeded in persuading the GOI and the Home Minister to grant general amnesty and resettlement to such youth so that they can re-enter the State. This is also reported to be one of the recommendations of a Working Group constituted by the Prime Minister on Kashmir, which has otherwise adopted a tactful silence on the return of half a million internally-displaced, suffering Kashmiri Hindus to their places of origin.

The Home Minister seems to have forgotten the huge personnel and material costs that the country has suffered to restore some law and order in the Valley. Only due to the incessant, valiant efforts of our security forces, Kashmir, which had otherwise sunk into anarchy during the last two decades, now has a semblance of normalcy. The Home Minister of India has confirmed that more then 3000 trained and indoctrinated militant youth are lying in wait to cross back into the State. How he has arrived at just this number is not known. It is even more astounding that the Home Minster has already declared that GOI has agreed to the suggestion of the J&K Chief Minister to grant amnesty to such youth and rehabilitate them back in the State.

Assuming that the GOI grants such amnesty and amenities to rabidly octrinated youth who are trained in arms, ammunition and terrorist sabotage, how will the Home Minister ensure that they do not start their game of loot, arson and mayhem again. Consider also that these youth have not acquired any employable skill other than warfare. The basic question in such repatriation will also be how the Government can condone the crimes and criminal deeds of such youth who broke the law of the land, crossed over to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir and Pakistan and then participated with an enemy in an armed, subversive campaign in the Valley.

If it is that easy to engage and rehabilitate law breakers and criminals who are a menace to the society and disgrace to humanity, why is it then difficult for the Government to resettle half a million internally displaced Kashmiri Hindus in the valley. This community, on which an exodus was forced, is highly qualified and emancipated, believes in secular values and respects the democratic way of thinking and living. It can contribute substantially to the growth and development of the State as it did in the past. This community is loyal to the country and faithful to the constitution, unlike the terrorists. But as is well known, the Government has developed cold feet on the issue of their return to their homes and rightful place of origin, fearing an adverse reaction from Muslims of the Valley. The gross human rights violations against these half a million Kashmiri Hindus by fundamentalists have neither moved the Central Government nor motivated the Human Rights Activists. The position of GOI is exposed in stark nakedness; High claims of morality and secular ethos on one hand and immoral succumbing to sectarian sentiments of Kashmiri Muslims on the other. It is an irony of Himalayan dimensions, which exposes the Government and speaks volumes about its vote bank prejudices, for which it is ready to sacrifice half a million suffering humanity and risk security of the country.

Though human rights activists are gaga on such a “radical” move of the Government to placate the vested interests of militants and separatists by rehabilitating criminals in the Valley, the inherent risks to the security of the state and political fabric of the country can and need not be ignored. There needs to be a relook at the matter and the ramifications of such a measure have to be seriously considered. A sane and serious Government cannot afford to act in a cheap manner just for its political ends, risking the security and solidarity of the country. The most that the Government could offer is to allow surrender of such people on the borders and put them to fair trial under law for their crimes but in courts outside the J&K State because courts in the State can not work impartially in this matter. The people of India need to research the matter and get involved politically. This is a matter of grave concern for India.

Those “human rights activists” who believe that their existence is to advocate a one dimensional view in support of the causes of terrorism from a high pedestal should know that they can only do so in a free country where they are provided security. They are not giving up their lives, nor are they suffering like the victims of terrorism and our defenders, the armed forces. They need to research the issue thoroughly and speak for the half a million displaced Kashmiri Hindus against whom human rights violations were committed as they were forcibly uprooted from their homes by the terrorists and not for the terrorists who have only forcefully followed their choices..

*P.N.Ganjoo was born in a modest Kashmiri family about 7 decades ago, lost his father early and was raised by his honest, hardworking mother. With her efforts he received his education in Srinagar and went on to serve in various Government Departments before retiring as a senior grade KAS officer.

Presently he is working on his varied interests besides being a consulting Director of a software services company.

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A well researched article on the present scenario in Kashmir. I hope that Govt. of India as well as Omar government in Kashmir are listening and aware of the grave dangers of the failed policy of appeasement at the cost of hapless kashmiri Hindus.
Added By Deepak Ganju
It is important to get these hard core personnel back to India in a well controlled and usefull manner if for mothing else but to prevent them from entering the valley in clandestine fashion to forment further trouble .They could be well trained for anti naxal operation . Regarding the internally displaced persons the laws of minority donot apply to them . They are soft targets and donot think of facilitating their sacrifice for any lager game .
Added By roop peshen