Thread: Kashmir | The vision of Indians
- 23rd August 2010 #1
Kashmir | The vision of Indians
Recently I read an article on Kashmir on the Times of India, authored by Mr. Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar. Here it goes:
On August 15, India celebrated independence from the British Raj. But Kashmiris staged a bandh demanding independence from India. A day symbolising the end of colonialism in India became a day symbolising Indian colonialism in the Valley.
As a liberal, i dislike ruling people against their will. True, nation-building is a difficult and complex exercise, and initial resistance can give way to the integration of regional aspirations into a larger national identity — the end of Tamil secessionism was a classical example of this.
I was once hopeful of Kashmir's integration, but after six decades of effort, Kashmiri alienation looks greater than ever. India seeks to integrate with Kashmir, not rule it colonially. Yet, the parallels between British rule in India and Indian rule in Kashmir have become too close for my comfort.
Many Indians say that Kashmir legally became an integral part of India when the maharaja of the state signed the instrument of accession. Alas, such legalisms become irrelevant when ground realities change. Indian kings and princes, including the Mughals, acceded to the British Raj. The documents they signed became irrelevant when Indians launched an independence movement.
The British insisted for a long time that India was an integral part of their Empire, the jewel in its crown, and would never be given up. Imperialist Blimps remained in denial for decades. I fear we are in similar denial on Kashmir.
The politically correct story of the maharaja's accession ignores a devastating parallel event. Just as Kashmir had a Hindu maharaja ruling over a Muslim majority, Junagadh had a Muslim nawab ruling over a Hindu majority. The Hindu maharaja acceded to India, and the Muslim nawab to Pakistan.
But while India claimed that the Kashmiri accession to India was sacred, it did not accept Junagadh's accession to Pakistan. India sent troops into Junagadh, just as Pakistan sent troops into Kashmir. The difference was that Pakistan lacked the military means to intervene in Junagadh, while India was able to send troops into Srinagar. The Junagadh nawab fled to Pakistan, whereas the Kashmir maharaja sat tight. India's double standard on Junagadh and Kashmir was breathtaking.
Do you think the people of Junagadh would have integrated with Pakistan after six decades of genuine Pakistani effort? No? Then can you really be confident that Kashmiris will stop demanding azaadi and integrate with India?
The British came to India uninvited. By contrast, Sheikh Abdullah, the most popular politician in Kashmir, supported accession to India subject to ratification by a plebiscite. But his heart lay in independence for Kashmir, and he soon began manoeuvering towards that end. He was jailed by Nehru, who then declared Kashmir's accession was final and no longer required ratification by a plebiscite. The fact that Kashmir had a Muslim majority was held to be irrelevant, since India was a secular country empowering citizens through democracy.
I'll present my own views first.
The article is brilliantly written and it makes everyone aware of the ground realities in Kashmir. However, there are points on which I don't agree. For ex: it is comparing the Indian Government's rule of Kashmir with the British rule of India. Remember British invaded India just for utilizing its resources. The English period of India is the darkest in its history.
Going back a bit, the Mughals invaded India too. However, they were here to stay. They didn't loot the country's resources and shipped back to Arab or from wherever they came. Of course, they killed and oppressed the Indian natives and rebellions too. The glory of the Mughal empire of what we read in the schools is only one side of the coin. ;-) But that is part of the empire building game. You can't rule people unless you've the heart to eliminate the resistance. Apart from that, you've to focus on the development of people and educate them, which they did. In short, Mughals or Mohammedans became one of us, INDIANS. They brought their own culture to India and embraced the Indian customs too. Similarly the native Indians finally accepted them as their own. 30 corore muslims currently living in post-independence India is a testimony to that fact.
I would say that the current Indian Government rule in Kashmir is equivalent to the Mughal's rule of 700 years over India. We're here to stay. We'll not tolerate if any other country keeps its evil eyes on Kashmir or any other part of India. Mr. Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar says in the article that he has lost hope of Kashmir integration with India after 6 decades of effort. Someone needs to remind him that resistance to the Mughal empire was there till the famous emperor, Aurangjeb too. He suppressed it, tried to eliminate all the rebellions.
I just hope that Kashmiris understand the situation that like India's security, it's Kashmir's security which they will have if they remain with India. Else some bigger force will invade and rule them, and then threaten other parts of the country. I just hope that our grand-children will be able to go to Kashmir for higher education and jobs freely like we go to other parts of India now. If not my grand-children, then their grand-children...
Till then, Indian government should continue to eliminate the terrorists, negotiate with the rebels, educate the people and do more development work in Kashmir. Jai Hind!
P.S.- I suggest all the guests reading this post to sign up on the forum and express your views about Kashmir and the above article.
Last edited by itsmemad; 23rd August 2010 at 03:52 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
- 23rd August 2010 #2
Kashmir's freedom movement is just like Khalistan freedom movement. From time to time, people try to break free of laws and strings. Government need to suppress this movement if they want to keep the country united. An Independent Kashmir will be just like Afghanistan were Islamic fanatics will conduct schools of terrorism. You can see this happening in POK. It is in greater interest of Kashmir that it stay in Indian Union.Join the fastest growing travel forum India Travel Forum. Become a member and share your travel experiences with others and also read what others have to say.
- 23rd August 2010 #3
- Join Date
- Feb 2008
its turning more into a religious war most of the muslims over there want freedom not the sikhs and people from other communities the separatists dont have a clear motive they are opposing amarnath yatra for no apparent reason they are telling students to boycott schools and are shutting them down giving stupid reasons like not attending classes for some time wont harm you on the other hand they are sending their own kids abroad to study
- 23rd August 2010 #4
The anecdotes given by Mr. Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar (Kashmir vs. Junagadh) are quite relevant. One can even add Hyderabad to the list. Mr. Nehru wanted to be known as a World Statesman and not just as a leader of newly formed democracy. These misadventures led to the current problems with Kashmir, Pakistan, China. etc. and the now defunct non-aligned movement.
Be it as it may, one should ask the question, "Why is that Indianization failed in Kashmir but succeeded in places such as Hyderabad, Junagadh, Goa and Tamil Eelaam?". One obvious reason is that in the other parts mentioned, the populace in general wanted to be with India. But that to me is a very simplistic counter argument. There were large pockets of communities in these areas that were anti-India too. The whole point is that the fruits of independence reached these areas far more than Kashmir.
By having Article 370 which gave Kashmir a special status, the basic accession to India was undermined. In India, a person can make any state his home but not kashmir. No industries or urbanization took place in Kashmir save some roads and railways. Till early 70's, Pathankot was the terminus of all north bound trains. And then the railway line was extended to 70 km north up to Jammu Tawi. It is just three years ago that Jammu-Srinagar line came into operation. As far as roads were concerned, the less said the better. Basically roads in the valley were developed by the Indian Army and for the Indian Army.
After sixty years, Kashmir does not have a single industry to speak of, save tourism. The people who are not in trade are jobless. And whatever trade happens is almost non-existent. People are unable to create wealth. They are still stuck in early 1900's. Had the Article 370 not been there, the valley too would have developed. People would have been occupied with their jobs and not with guns. EMPTY MIND IS A DEVIL'S WORKSHOP, as the saying goes. But lack of political will and shortsighted policies killed the dream of the local people. Naturally, they feel that they are better off seceding from India. Even if the Article 370 is abolished today, it will still take a lot of courage for people/industries to move to Kashmir.
The North-East also faces a similar situation today.
Itsmemad likens the Indian rule in Kashmir to Muslim/Mughal rule in India. But as said that Muslims/Mughal conquerers became Indians later. Have we tried to bridge the gap between Kashmiri muslims and the rest? Pune receives a lot of students from North East? It may amuse (and perhaps sadden) everyone to know that many locals refer to them as Nepalese or even Chinese. How can these people ever identify themselves with India?
Gradual Indianization and industrialization of Kashmir is the way. It is road laden with difficulties and challenges. It may even require some force in the beginning. But ultimately the trees will ripen with rich fruits.
- 23rd August 2010 #5
I completely agree with the views of the J4X on the Article 370.
Mr. Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar says that after more than 60 years of independence, Kashmiri people still think they are not part of India and want to be an independent nation free from colonial law of India. But this line of argument is plain stupid. History is witness to the fact that when ever Kashmiri government wanted extra goodies from `Center', they have created protests, increased separatist movements etc. Even Kashmiri people do not want to join Pakistan. POK is a living example of how Kashmir would have been if they had joined Pakistan in 1947. Every time Kashmiri leadership wants more money, they start a free-Kashmir motion, blackmail India and take money.
The reason for this is Article 370. Which gives extra privileges to Kashmiri leadership. For example, any law that Indian government makes has to be approved by Kashmiri government before being implemented. A non-Kashmiri cannot own property in the state.
Important snippets about this article
* Muslims from other parts of the country become successful in getting the citizenship of the Jammu and Kashmir but about one lakh Hindus, who had been uprooted in the neighborhood at the time of the partition, have not been given citizenship so far.
* UN was against this article and so was initial Kashmiri leadership as it was more dividing. The Government of India too had assured people that when the time comes, the Article would be scrapped. But our political interests and the mean and directionless politics of vote bank based on appeasement have not allowed this to materialize.
* A former Chief Minister, G.M. Shah, had said that the aim of the Government family planning programme was to convert the Muslim majority into a minority. Such type of false propaganda has given birth to separatism which received shelter under Article 370
* On the question of Ayodhya and the consequent Babri Masjid episode the Union Home Ministry had been issuing threats to the Uttar Pradesh Government and ultimately the Government was dismissed under Article 356 of the constitution but this article cannot be implemented directly in Jammu and Kashmir.
So why the article 370 is not removed ? The Kashmiri leadership does not want to remove it. It gives them complete power over their spendings and have no one to answer to. As a result most of the developmental money Kashmir gets from India ends up in the pockets of politicians. Who from time to time hire goons to carry out protests against India. The Indian government then sends some more goodies or drops the topic of Article 370.
As mentioned by J4X, in Kashmir and North-East, the infrastructure growth is minimal since 1947. The main reason is not that India does not send them money. It's the corruption in the politics. It is something like George Orwell's `1984'. The government feeds people false information about India, keeps the public in dark and just forks for its own selfish powerful few. "Since the beginning of militancy in 1990, the state has managed to get the lion's share of Central resources-over Rs 35,571.3 crore in grants and assistance. In 2001-2, for instance, Jammu and Kashmir got Rs 4,577 crore from the Centre or over 10 per cent of the assistance to states. It has got more than any other state every year since 1995. Add to this projects in the state worth over Rs 25,000 crore being funded by the Centre."
The sad thing is all these fundings are not given to Kashmir because it is poor. But because it is a muslim majority and partly due to weak government in center based on purely appeasement of all. And now the Amarnath issue. For those who do not know the details, The state government issued some land (i think 40-60 acres) so that resting place for Amarnath tourists can be made. Some of the separatist groups branded this as anti-muslim move. They blamed the government for making the state pro-hindu and encouraging hindu settlement in the area. They argue that this would make them majority. As a result, violent protests against hindus followed. Hundreds of people died. This issue led to the fall of Kashmiri government in July 2008. BJP retaliated with violence. Which was used as an excuse by the extremist hurriyat leaders to paint india as anti-muslim nation and fuel more communal riots. The result, protest by Kashmiri people in Delhi.
So is there a solution to this mess? I think the only solution will come if we have a strong government whose aim is the welfare of people and not appeasement of politicians. I think such a government will not be at mercy of fanatic leaders who can withdraw support any time. Such a government must revoke Article 370 and reach out to the people in Kashmir. Making more central schools, colleges, etc. This is not much different from what is already happening. Instead of using middle men (Kasmiri politicians), India must directly invest in Kashmir and reach out to people who are blinded by their corrupt state government.
It's simple human nature. Suppose that Kashmiri politicians are running an orphanage in which the Kashmiri people are the orphans. This orphanage is owned by India. The managers of the orphanage take money from India. They use to make their lives better, they keep the children locked in the orphanage compounds all day. The only out side world interaction is what the orphanage managers tell the children. The orphanage managers tell the children that the owner is not sending any money and hence they are unable to even afford food for the children. I am sure after 60 days, the children will have tonnes of hatred for the owner. In the case of Kashmir, this has been there for the past 60 years. It will not go away in 1-2 months. Solving this issue requires a strong government with the will to do welfare for people.
- 25th August 2010 #6
i have just one thing to say...
"Doodh mangoge to kheer denge,
Kashmir Mangoge to 'Cheer' denge" ...
i have no questions or answers or debate for anyone...my idea is " i will chop off f*** Porki rebellions if they bring trouble to our Kashmiri People..."
"Maulana Masud Azahar" was a defeated Constituency aspirant of late 80s.. now he is a terror org chief..
thats the whole story....
i read a legend about Hyderabad( at those times Telengana was known as it was) that Communists leader of the region were with the Nizam of Hbad for Independence from the Union of India. They wanted an armed triumph for the red flag to the region..they cursed Indian leaders of those time. They tried to discourage indian leaders by saying that they had enough resources and arms from Pakis and S. Arabia..
Indian govt. hinted of an armed war with the Reddish..
soon the Communists of India went to meet the international chief of communists..Mr. Stalin..
they told him of the situation..
Stalin was a brilliant situanist.. he quotedly asked his political and strategic deputy on this issue "That how many arms were there in the October rev. of 1917"? .. he got reply that "Thousands of arms and Millions of men"..."And where can we see the Telengana on the Indian subcontinent"??stalin replied..
so this was the situation.. Communists were and are dividers. just like the porkies in Kashmir.. Thanks to Sardar Patel ji, who gave us a one land and not a country like S. Africa-Lesotho.. i couldnt gulp a nation with nation inside it.. and there were going to be three of them, Kashmir, Rampur, and Hbad..
Last edited by mickey; 25th August 2010 at 12:56 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepostjob takes the child away.
- 25th August 2010 #7
Hmm. Mickey. I wondered where you were.
No. I do not support separating Kashmir from India. It must remain integral part of India. I am just playing the devil's advocate here.
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