Betrayal of Kashmiris, once again

The puppet Chief Minister of Indian held Jammu & Kashmir (IHK), Omar Abdullah met Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on December 30, 2009 in New Delhi to discuss the Justice Sageer Ahmad’s report (Fifth Working Group) on centre-state relations. During the meeting reports of all the five Working Groups, which were set up following second Round Table Conference on Kashmir in May 2006, were discussed and Omar Abdullah insisted on implementation of these reports. The issues discussed included special status of the IHK border state within the Indian Union, methods of strengthening secularism, rule of law in the state and democracy. Both the leaders discussed steps leading to decentralization of powers and replacement of regular India Army with Para Military Forces. Another important point of discussion was secret, quiet and off the table talks with various independence seeking groups and examination of the question of autonomy in the light of various formulas. Ironically, despite strong opposition from Kashmiri Muslims, Hindu Pandits and other groups across the state, Omar Abdullah is unable to hear the voices of the masses and still insisting on implementation of Working Groups reports.

It is interesting to note that while all other Working Groups presented their reports at the third roundtable conference in Delhi in April 2007, the fifth Working Group, headed by Justice Saghir Ahmed failed to submit its report in time. There was not a single meeting of this group since September 3, 2007, however out of the blue, the Group submitted report in the last week of December 2009, at the time when controversy over separate state status to Telegana is in full swing. There is no doubt that it was a golden opportunity for New Delhi to fool the Kashmiris once again. The Kashmiris, irrespective of the fact that they are Muslims, Hindu Pandits or Sikhs, want to get rid of Indian occupational forces and New Delhi-sponsored dictators out from IHK. It is an open secret that they are not likely to compromise or agree to any deal less than complete independence from India Union. Kashmiris want to express their right of self determination in the shape of free and impartial plebiscite. It is worth mentioning here that since partition in August 1947, thousands of Kashmiri Muslims were forced by India to migrate to different Pakistani cities and Azad Jammu and Kashmir. The India government and its security forces also expelled the Hindu Pandits from their ancestral houses and orchards which are presently under occupation of Indian Armed forces. Today, the forced-homeless Hindu Pandits are living in miserable condition in various refugee camps in India.

It is quite depressing to note that the Indian government is not interested in providing an opportunity to Kashmiri Muslims and minorities to live with harmony. The Working Committee Reports have authenticated presence of Indian Armed forces by mere relocating the security personnel from agriculture lands to other locations. Indian state-sponsored propaganda machinery is propagating that the recommendations of the Working Group regarding Article 370 is inconsistent with the spirit of the declarations made in the Constituent Assembly at the time of incorporation of the Article in the constitution and that these recommendations will reduce the minority communities of the Jammu and Kashmir State as second class citizens in their own home state. The fact cannot be denied that Article 370 is illegitimate and is in clear violation to 3rd June Plan and United Nations Security Council Resolution. The recommendations in the report regarding the appointment of the Governor in IHK by the Centre would account to depriving Kashmiris of their democratic rights for ever and the state would be directly governed by Centre through representative of Indian Union.

Kashmiri youth

Kashmiri Muslims groups have strongly rejected the Working Committee reports and are not ready become part of the Indian conspiracy once again. Hindu parties including BJP have rejected Justice Sageer Ahmed Report and demanded its revocation. They have also demanded the Prime Minister’s intervention. BJP has announced launching of awareness campaign in entire Jammu region on January 4, 2010 and have threatened that if there will be no response from the Centre over the report, mass agitation will be carried out. BJP is also demanding abrogation of Article 370 that gives special status to Jammu and Kashmir. Panun Kashmir has also rejected the recommendations of the Working Group and termed them as a complete sell-out of the interests of the displaced Kashmiri Pandits, the people of Jammu and Ladakh. Panun Kashmir is of the view that the recommendations of the said report have the potential to take the State back to 1952-position and plunge the State in a constitutional and social crisis of an unprecedented dimension. Panun Kashmir claimed that proposal regarding doing away with the Article 356 of the constitution is dangerous manure since IHK is a frontline state. And in the event of an emergency, the Centre would not be able to invoke the provisions of the Article 356 while people of the state would be left at the mercy of the situation. Jammu & Kashmir National Panthers Party (JKNPP) has called Justice Shageer Ahmed report as biased and is of the view that it deserves to be dumped into the dustbin without any further discussion. The Panthers Party Chairman appeal in person the leadership of BJP, Congress, Jammu State Morcha, Left parties and other social groups including Chamber of Commerce, Trade Unions, Bar Associations, Sangarsh Samiti, students and youth organizations and all those who share our view on the fraudulent report of Justice Shageer Ahmed to put their collective efforts to teach and central-State government a lesson forever.

There is lot of opposition to Justice Shageer Ahmed report from every corner of IHK, irrespective of the fact that they are Kashmiri Muslims, Hindus or Sikhs. With the exception of National Conference (NC) and some symbolic Centre-backed parties, everyone is dagger drawn to the recommendations in the report. Generally speaking, it seems that the recommendations are in favour of Kashmiris especially the Muslims but there is a big conspiracy being hatched against every individual linked with Kashmiri freedom struggle. If we trace back the conspiracy, the Indian government at Centre and its Intelligence agencies through a systematic plot divided the people of IHK on ethnic and sectarian lines. Hindu political groups in India exploited the situation to create situation that lead to exodus of religious and ethnic minorities in IHK which in couple of months lead to a very dangerous situation. New Dehli sponsored mass migration of Hindu Pandits and Sikhs and created such conditions in IHK that it became impossible for them to live in the state. Indian security forces ruthlessly massacred Hindus and Sikhs so that mass exodus takes place and blame is leveled on the Muslims. According to Indian official figures, there were three lakh Kashmiri Pandits in IHK prior to 1990 Indian military operation against Kashmiris. In Jammu Valley there was mass migration and their number decreased to 9000 in 1990 which further come down to around 4000 in 2008-2009.

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visited Jammu in April 2004 and ordered construction of 5,442 flats at three locations at Jagjiti near Nagrota, Muthi and Purkhoo. His second visit took place in May 2008. There are around 30 organizations/groups representing the Pandit community, many among them are playing in the hands of Indian and foreign intelligence agencies. The increase in activities of Mossad, MI5 and MI6 as well as CIA in IHK has even alarmed Indian agencies. There is a plan to move as many Hindus in IHK, especially in Jammu as possible. The Indian government has made an open offer that those who have sold their properties in IHK prior to 1997 and do not possess any house there are entitled to reimbursement of same amount as cash assistance for construction of houses or collective housing societies. Those who would avail this offer would also be given other incentives including 6000 jobs for unemployed migrant in which half the jobs would be the responsibility of Central Government. Similarly Indian intelligence agencies and their agents have penetrated inside Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJ&K) and have arranged migration of number of Kashmiris, especially refugees from IHK on attractive incentives including cash to each family member and job security. One wonders, how long Indian government would suppress the voices of Kashmiris. The acceptance of offer by some of the helpless Kashmiris is projected as great triumph, forgetting that it has been achieved on bayonet of the gun and blackmailing tactics. It seems that the International Organizations (IO) such as United Nations Organization (UNO) and Non Governmental Organizations (NGO) have sold their conscience and are mere spectators waiting for the extinguishtion of all those who are fighting for their rights.(Afshain Afzal)


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