Home Minister visits Kashmir

K.N. Pandita
Home Minister Rajnath visited Kashmir to take stock of situation in the aftermath of the liquidation of a terrorist commander of a designated terrorist organization.
The Home Minister had no urgency to make the visit even after two weeks of on-going unrest in the valley. The Prime Minister has not reacted. He need not, nor the Home Minister.
The separatist leaders gave call for strike and protest rallies against the killing of the terrorist commander. They always give such calls whenever a terrorist commander is killed. In other words, they are for terrorism and violence. Their sons and wards are receiving education in superior educational and professional institutes outside Kashmir. But they induce the local youth, mostly from poor families, to pelt stones, bring out mass protest rallies, attack police and security force’s camps, and loot their weapons and kots and open fire on army or police.
J&K Government has to decide whether it allows this open call for terrorism to be in place or that it is to be challenged. When the Home Minister says that India will not compromise with terrorism, does it not mean that those supporting and abetting terrorism covertly or overtly must face the law of the land? Has he the determination to act? That is what is to be seen after his two days visit to the valley.
All anti-democratic forces have come together to destabilize the democratically elected Government in J&K particularly after the death of Mufti Sayeed. They are trying to test the steadfastness and strength of Ms Mehbooba Mufti. In other words, they are definitely trying to destabilize democratic process in the State. Will the Indian State allow it to happen? Home Minister and Prime Minister both have categorically said that the Chief Minister will be supported. Support goes to democracy; who is in the chair of chief minister does not matter much.
Entire opposition spearheaded by Congress in J&K has come together to derail the elected Government. In Kashmir people have usually complained of Centre removing or installing the Governments in J&K. Now it is the opposition itself that is engineering derailment of the elected Government. Who oils the engine of defiance, is known to everyone in Kashmir.
ISI works through Kashmir branch of Jamat-e-Islami. Only one killing has happened in the city of Srinagar, rest of 46 in South Kashmir, particularly Anantnag district, the stronghold of PDP. Again, South Kashmir is also the stronghold of Jamaat-i-Islami. Now a sinister alliance between JI, NC and Congress has been forged under the aegis of ISI to set Kashmir on fire.
Pakistan has brought the battle to the streets of the towns and cities in Kashmir, not through external terrorists but through non-lethal legions within the valley, subterfuge.
In view of this, the Union Government should read the writing on the wall. The cry is against the security forces using extra dose of muscle power or the pallet guns etc. What are security forces supposed to do when mobs attack their camps, try to assault the personnel, snatch their arms and ammunition and fire on them or on military camps? Are the forces to let all this happen and stand aside with folded hands and become fodder to the guns?
Why did not the Home Minister have the strength to say the simple formula? Stop pelting stones, violence and mobocracy or face the consequences.
The State has to assert its authority. Asserting authority means asserting human rights — human rights of those millions who are peace loving and do not want violence to destroy their homes and lives. A State that asserts cannot make even the minutest concession. Concessions have to be made when voices are raised in normal conditions through saner elements and within the framework of the constitution.
Kashmiris have the history of inviting others to rule over them. It is after three thousand years of slavery, servitude, and subjugation that they had emerged as free and independent people in 1947 to shape their destiny as a proud free, democratic, secular and egalitarian State. After nearly seven decades of freedom, they want to bring back to their memory their age old slavery, servitude and subjugation. Now they are fighting a battle for the return of that history. If they persist with it, they will get it. A sadist would say sooner they get it the better.
Indian State would not have much hesitation in conceding the irrationality of the people in the valley if it had not international ramifications. What New Delhi apprehends is that while longing for a hug from Pakistan, Kashmiris may find themselves in the embrace of China and not Pakistan. I am reminded of an Urdu verse which is apt to be quoted here:
Shaykh ne masjid bana mismar butkhana kiya Pahle to soorat thi kuchh ab saaf veerna kiya