It’s engineered disempowerment: Naeem Akhtar
GK NEWS NETWORK
Srinagar, Nov 15: The former Secretary, General Administration Department, Naeem Akthar, on Sunday cautioned against what he termed as disempowerment of Kashmiris through social engineering.
Speaking on the topic, “The reality behind regional disparity,” at the GK Foundation seminar on “Discrimination in Services – Kashmir Perspective,” he said the mind of Kashmiri youth was being driven into class-IV jobs. “If the present trend continues, disempowerment of Kashmiris is inevitable,” he said.
Tracing the genesis of discrimination, he said, “Three-four generations back reading room party was fighting for the rights of Kashmiri Muslims. Now their great grand children are facing the same problems. Those days it was Muslims versus non-Muslims. Today it is Jammu versus Kashmir.”
Quoting an anecdote, he said, “A journalist friend whose name I can’t reveal here shared a story with me. He said ‘Meher Chand Mahajan (who later became Chief Justice of JK) had floated the idea of creating parity between Jammu and Kashmir. In 1947 there were 80 per cent Muslims and 20 per cent Hindus in the state. After the massacre of Muslims in Jammu in 1947, someone had asked Mahajan how could parity between Muslims and Hindus be created. He had pointed towards Tawi river where bodies of Muslims who had been massacred were lying.”
“Though 70:30 ratio between Muslims and non-Muslims still persists, but 50:50 policy has been adopted when it comes to allotment of funds or jobs. The 50:50 fraud has been established by the operational help of Kashmiri leaders,” Akthar lamented.
He said that facts couldn’t be sacrificed for political reasons. “The day isn’t far away when Kashmir will be disempowered completely. In 2005 out of 3.52 lakh employees in the state, 30 lakh Hindu population occupied 4.61 percent jobs while the share of Muslims having 68 lakh population was only 2.85 per cent in government jobs. Hindus outnumber Muslims in state government,” he revealed.
He lamented that Kashmiri youth had been hankering after class IV jobs. “It is a ploy to dis-empower us. Concept of right, wrong and dignity has been taken away through social engineering. We have to apply our energy to be the best and make ourselves indispensable. When we can do well in MBBS, there is no reason why can’t we do better in KAS. We have to realize when in adversity, one has to rise to the occasion,” he added.
“We have to go for much needed self-introspection. Our najars (carpenters), gilkars (masons) and barbers feel shy about their work. They only flaunt their profession when they need category certificates for class IV jobs,” Akthar said.
Quoting example of Jews he said, “In best Jew institutions, Jew students have to score more marks than others to get an admission. Similarly, we have to raise ourselves if we have to fight against the discrimination.”
Akhtar congratulated GK Foundation for organizing a debate on this vital issue. “Greater Kashmir is the only second institution Kashmiris have been able to establish in last century,” he added.
Earlier, while welcoming the guests on behalf of Editor-in-Chief Greater Kashmir and Kashmir Uzma, Fayaz Ahmad Kaloo, senior GK columnist Ajaz-ul-Haque said that the motive of the seminar was not to find the reasons, but the array of reasons.
“It isn’t that we are pitting Kashmir against Jammu. We have no problem if Jammu prospers, but it shouldn’t be at the cost of Kashmir. We have no problem if we fail to make it to top due to our inability and incompetence. But we have a problem if we are left out for no sin of ours,” he said.
“One question haunts us. Normally demography and power go hand in hand. But statistics are horrifying. In administrative services, judiciary and police Kashmiris lag far behind.”
Quoting figures from newspapers and magazines, he said, “In 70 per cent Muslims majority state, out of 96 IAS officers there are only 23 Muslims. Since 1947, out of 24 Chief Secretaries only eight have been Muslims. This makes one thing clear that something is wrong somewhere.”
In question-answer session, various people raised questions. Senior Editor Greater Kashmir, Z G Muhammad raised the issue of Kashmiris being discriminated by the Public Service Commission. “We accept there was no disparity in past. However, since 2006 not many Kashmiris have been able to qualify the KAS exams, either our Intelligence Quotient level has gone down or the PSC has tailored procedures to oust Kashmiri Muslims,” Z G observed.
He said that retired bureaucrats were made members of the PSC as they “promise to follow the dictations of the government.”
Prof G R Shah termed the discrimination in services as offshoot of “something else.” “It is communalism not the discrimination in services. The communalism trickles down from Delhi via Jammu,” he said.
Dr Abdul Ahad, Dr Abdul Wahid, Showkat Shafi and Nisar Bhat also raised various questions. `
Senior Correspondent Greater Kashmir, Faheem Aslam conducted the proceedings of the seminar.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 15 Nov 2009 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 15 Nov 2009 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 16 Nov 2009 00:00:00 IST
- MORE FROM FRONTPAGE
- Address discrimination: Wajahat to Govt
- Proud of KU marking standards: Prof Punjabi
- It’s engineered disempowerment: Naeem Akhtar
- Kashmiris out of decision-making: Shah
- Fewer Kashmiris in KAS: Pandit
- Real issue deprivation: Drabu
- No discrimination, just grievances: Sheikh
- Renzu hails local officers’ role
- China blocks India’s move
- SRTC agitation deferred
- SHRC recommends relief for Army informer
Srinagar, Nov 15: Several residential houses near Hyderpora square have developed cracks due to the ongoing construction of flyover, the inhabitants complained. According to the residents, the work More
Asks Geelani to join negotiation table
Jammu, Nov 15: Asking Hurriyat Conference led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani to join negotiation table, the former deputy chief minister and senior Peoples Democratic Party leader Muzaffar Hussain Baig Sunday More
Islamabad, Nov 15: The Pakistan Peoples Party after merging as largest party in Gilgit-Baltistan legislative polls has hinted at formation of government in coalition with Mutahida Qaumi Movement More