How long do we continue to shift blame on others?
"If someone has Enough Courage to ask you a question seriously, then you should be Brave Enough to Answer truthfully" Cameron Milto
For various reasons I did not write for some time. During this time wanton bloodshed was profuse in Egypt and Syria. Those beating breast for democracy ordered trampling of humans and Muslims under rolling tanks. Some Muslim countries are part of this massacre. They provided more than 16 billion dollars to the Egyptian military dictators to spill the blood of Muslims. Syria is no exception. The Hadith says “If a Muslim in the East is in pain, his coreligionist in the West has to be his sympathizer.” What happened to this axiom?
Contrarily, Muslim is seeking the blood of Muslim and using poisonous gas. Newly-wed brides are minced under the tanks. Kids under impact of poisonous gas, die of breathlessness. Yet the Muslims are tight lipped.
In the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, human beings are torn to shreds by bombs hurled in mosques, Imambaras and churches day in and day out. Communal clashes were contrived in U.P resulting in loss of human lives and damage worth billion of rupee of property.
We the Muslims, instead of doing some souls searching tend to bring the onus of these killings to the doorsteps of the US, Israel or India.
What is happening in our small state? A national daily came out with the sensational news that in its report the army’s inquiry committee had said “that in 2010 General V.K. Singh, the Army Chief had passed on 1.20 crore rupees to the present Agriculture Minister Ghulam Hasan Mir for creating disturbed situation in the State.” Commenting on the report, the former Army Chief said “that Mir was a nationalist leader and doubting him is tantamount to doubting God”. Ghulam Hasan Mir rubbished the entire episode as false and fabricated. But in a live interview to Times Now on 23 September, former Amy Chief did not only defend passing on money to Mir but also added that army has been passing on money not only to Mir but to many more ministers in J&K.
Now after General’s statement it is clear that the Army has been giving hundreds of millions of rupees to the ministers to protect the interests of the army in J&K.
No wonder, many more besides the Ministers and bureaucrats would be receiving the largess from the army. We can only imagine?
World history has many instances of occupational armies providing largesse to local agents and oppressed to subvert economy, culture and heritage of the oppressed people. That is why when sections of Indian civil society beat the drum of democracy, Kashmiris call it mere romanticism. Democracy may be in India but beyond Lakhanpore there is no trace of it.
General V.K. Singh’s revelation proves that India has not allowed her democratic institutions grow in Kashmir. Some times a policeman removed Sheikh Abdullah from power and put him behind bars, and at other times no fewer than thirty assembly seats were filled unopposed. Some times Farooq Abdullah was removed under a conspiracy and at other times in 1988 MUF was humiliated. In final analysis, Kashmiris were convinced that economic backwardness, oppression, incarceration and tyranny were the gifts of Indian democracy.
But the question is why we should not make some introspection. Can we challenge Indian institutions without making an introspection of our own doings? We took up gun in 1989 without a proper plan and without a definite program. The then Jamat-e-Islami chief Sadu’d-Din had clearly rejected General Ziaul Haq’s proposal of armed resistance. I too had opposed because international conditions and Pakistan’s internal situation did facilitate it. With the unleashing of the gun in 1988, a great movement came to fore. Unfortunately occupational forces on both sides created no fewer than 150 armed groups and anybody speaking for the nation was tortured and killed.
We stoked the flames of civil war and contrived the liquidation of our youth in the name of freedom or accession. Groups favoring accession to Pakistan embarked on killing other groups with same program. Many outstanding intellectuals wear killed including a venerable person like Maulvi Muhammad Farooq. Men like Dr. Guru, Mushiru’l-Huq, Qazi Nisar, Adul Ghani Lone, Dr. Ghulam Qadir Wani and Dr. Jalalu’d-Din and others were done away. Indian forces captured arms and ammunition to the tune of 95 thousand AK rifles, 3500 machine guns, and thousands of tons of ammunition either by killing the militants or from surrendered militants.
The surrendered militants thought of fighting the freedom war through slogans and in this way the All Party Hurriyat came into existence. Unfortunately the Hurriyat, too, had no concrete and definite plan for continuing the struggle. The conglomerate partners began to have their own agenda to carry forward. Not only that, they have been occasionally contradicting one another. Some organizations distanced from the united structure and finally the Hurriyat got bifurcated into two groups. Groups with same names comprise each of the two groups. Instead of crushing the occupational forces, the two groups are eager to establish their respective supremacy. People are aware of these things. The tragedy is that if a member of one group received threats, he pulled out and joined the other group. The reason was that General Musharraf was sometimes happy with one group (Hurriyat M) and at other times with the other group (Hurriyat G). The groups of Shabir Shah and Naeem Khan changed their affiliations between the two groups, and these days they have distanced from both.
History tells us that oppressed nations when engaged in freedom struggle have a well-thought out plan of action and are disciplined through solid ideological frame. They broach no confusion about their struggle and if there is more than one organization with same objective, these forge strong unity. They need advisory committees comprising intellectuals, scholars, astute politicians and seasoned lawyers who help make long term plans. Unity among the leadership is of primary importance. The bane of Kashmiri freedom struggle is that one who takes up his pen or opens his mouth on this topic, is branded as an agent. In the agitation of 2008, nearly sixty-four innocent lives were lost. People came out to vote in large numbers for drinking water, electric power and roads. The result was that Congress and National Conference made the coalition government. Resistance leadership sat silently to wait for another episode.
In 2010, the martyrdom of Tufail Mattoo activated the resistance forces. About 117 lives were lost in that year’s disturbances. 2011 and 2012 were somewhat peaceful and resistance forces passed into limbo. Except for sporadic slogan raising or minor protest rally, there was no sign of the destination of the freedom struggle. Recurrent calls for strikes lost their weight.
In the process Kashmir became a consumer state. All goods come from India as we produce nothing. Calls for strike are a loss to us the Kashmiris only, and to none else. Educational institutions are shut down for students. We don’t have super specialty educational institutions in the State, and we are lacking in professional advanced institutions. Thousands of Kashmiri students having sought admission in different educational institutions of India are getting dissolved in wider Indian cultural milieu. Most of them do not return to Kashmir. Shops and small scale industrial units remain closed and they have to pay the interest of the bank loans. It causes great financial loss to them. Artisans are deprived of their daily earning owing to strike calls. Our strike calls have been going on for last two decades and half but to the occupational forces this makes not an iota of impact. It has to be remembered that civil disobedience is an art and a concerted movement. If it is carried along right direction, it can disintegrate even the mighty powers. But the very foundation of our movement is faulty and the entire structure raised on it is faulty. We are torn by ego. We have seen with our own eyes youngsters shedding their blood, and we have seen our women molested and yet we stick to ego refusing to opt for unity and concreted effort. We have forgotten the Quranic injunction:
“That the communities that do not rise to change their condition can never find their condition changed.”
This article was published in'various newspapers including 'Kashmir Uzma', 'Daily Chattan', 'Weekly Pukaar', 'Weekly Shohrat' and 'Greater Kashmir' on 8th October 2013.