No to injustice
In solidarity, I join this peaceful resistance
WORDS WITHIN BY FIRDOUS SYED
The merciless killing of a nine year old child is simply unbearable. The dance of death is reaching its macabre proportions and crashing over the threshold of our tolerance. Even to the levels where we doubt that we may have turned immune to the new tragedies. However the death of a child is too much of a pain, it is enough to overwhelm us. Burdened with grief, one may loose his sanity and start hurling stones to whatever comes to one’s way. Current conditions resembles to a pressure-cocker without a safety valve. With each passing day the pressure is building up, it is ready to explode any time. Nevertheless choked with emotions, sanity is not to be lost. With determination and gathering spiritual strength, Kashmir shall produce an intellectual energy which will burn to ashes the shackles of slavery; Kashmir will be free soon again. Kashmir is fighting for justice, hopes are not to be lost, in the eternal struggle of good and evil, truth has always prevailed. Let us remain steadfast and true to our belief: Say: “O my Lord! Let my entry be by the Gate of Truth and Honour, and likewise my exit by the Gate of Truth and Honour; and grant me from Thy Presence an authority to aid (me). Truth has (now) arrived, and Falsehood perished: for Falsehood is (by its nature) bound to perish.” Quran 17:80; 81.
Can India erect larger security paraphernalia than the present colossal repressive apparatus already operating in Kashmir? India is a huge country, whence three quarters of a million jackboots are occupying literally every inch and controlling (though in vain) every soul in Kashmir, it has the capacity to flood Kashmir with lacs of more trigger-happy troops. However question remains, will it be able to destroy the zeal for Azadi. No never and not at all. It can suppress, subjugate through use of naked force or deflect by means of inducement (temporarily) the Kashmniri aspirations; it will never succeed in destroying the innate desire of a nation to be free. In order to tame struggling masses, let India nuke Kashmir, which is the only weapon left in its arsenal, innocent blood of 17 year Tufail is enough to rekindle the flames of dying fire. It is not a rhetoric or loudmouth bragging, it happened exactly few weeks back. Didn’t we hear Prime Minister of India boasting from the ramparts of Red Fort, elections have proved there is “no place for separatist thought in Jammu and Kashmir.” Moreover during his previous visit to disputed region of Kashmir, in utter hubris dismissing the political aspirations of Kashmiri masses by putting insurmountable conditions he virtually killed any prospects of peace in Kashmir. Because he was made to believe, serpentine queues before the poling booths, chugging of railway, so called 24000 crore economic package, has changed the political reality of Kashmir. When a local boy owing to his brilliance and hard work was able to stand first in a competitive exam, PM may have finally believed, mood in Kashmir has changed for the good?
This self conceived notion of normalcy in Kashmir has proved to be a momentary relief. Edifice of peace built on the soft sand was swept away by the blood of innocents and flood of emotions the last week. With it also drowned the fabricated structure of dysfunctional democracy. This has happened time and again, but mandarins in Delhi refuse to reconcile with the ground realities. Surprisingly Home Secretary G K Pillai in an interview has said, “Situation will normalise in the Valley once the unruly mobs realise that the government is not going to cow down to the separatists’ tactics---The tension will not last for long.” One is amazed with this self assuring tone, is 63 years period not a long period of time to convince New Delhi all is not well in Kashmir? Has Kashmir since 1947 and particularly after 1989, experienced any sense of normalcy? After partition peace has never prevailed, 1989 onwards a bloody conflict has been raging in Kashmir.
More reprehensible is the remark, “I think there is a misnomer of civilians getting killed.” If civilians are not getting killed who are these teenagers being hunted down randomly? Were Zahid, Inayat, Tufail, Rafiq, Shujaat, Imtiyaz and nine year Asif, AK 47 wielding terrorists? Even if this theory is to be believed that all those who were killed were part of a stone pelting crowd, is the bullet only answer to the stonepelting. Going by this yardstick, hundreds if not thousands should die every month in the violent protests being held in the length and breadth of India? But there are double standards; citizens are to be pacified, occupied killed mercilessly. Why in Kashmir only youngsters die hit by teargas canisters? And why peaceful protests in Kashmir turn out to be violent? People turn violent only, when forces using lethal force try to disperse a peaceful assembly. Sopor Chalo march was entirely peaceful until it was not stopped by the forces. Violence begets violence, when people are denied their right to express, obviously they will protest. And is protest not part of the democracy? India claim to be the largest democracy of the world, why it continues to deny people of Jammu and Kashmir their fundamental rights?
Previously, Kashmiri was slaughtered in the name of terrorism, now he is being killed, while asking peacefully for his rights. Instead of recognizing the underpinnings of Kashmiri aspirations they are accused of acting on the behest of (outside) militant forces. It is a sinister agenda--- give dog a bad name and kill him. Home Minister of India needs to verify his facts--- “Trouble started with the killing of two LeT militants in an encounter in Sopore.” Present phase of uprising was not triggered by Sopor encounter; valley is simmering since January, and precisely from the day when Wamiq Farooq was killed. The unending cycle of deaths and Michil fake encounter added fuel to the furry. Death of Tufail proverbially proved to be last straw on the camel’s back. Pakistan did not engineer the fake encounter or the repeated excesses being committed by the forces. And nor fringe elements can force tens of thousands to protest on the streets, that too when there is ever possibility that they might be killed by the marauding forces. People are protesting out of their own conviction and driven by the excesses carried out by the brutal forces. If the aspirations are not indigenous and people are not genuinely agitated, why government is afraid of protests? Why a reign of terror has been unleashed against the people? Why entire valley is reeling under curfew, why people are caged inside their homes, forced to live under the shadow of gun? What are the gun-toting troopers doing in every nook and corner of valley, restoring order or controlling lives, perhaps suppressing people? Why forces accused of committing grave human rights violations have been given clean chit? And why local regime was chastened for protesting against the ‘unbridled forces’? Puppet Chief Minister was forced to defend indefensible; in the process he lost any semblance of people’s trust. The answer to all these pertinent questions is very simple. India is afraid of struggle; by sheer use of force it is desperate to curb the freedom movement.
The three remarks, ‘agitational terrorism’--- Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) is a ‘holy act’ and ‘misnomer of civilians getting killed,’ needs to be read in conjunction with the Home Minister’s statement—“Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT), which was fomenting trouble.” Once these statements are juxtaposed together, a horrible pattern emerges; first, even peaceful agitation in Kashmir is described as terrorism, next AFSPA is declared ‘holy act’ and ‘misnomer of civilians’ makes every Kashmiri seeking Azadi a combatant. Finally home Minister’s certificate that trouble is fomented by LeT leaves nothing for imagination. This statement makes every Kashmiri a potential Pan-Islamic Jihadi. These statements provide license to forces, any Kashmiri is a legitimate target; he can be killed at will. Home minister of India is said to be an intelligent person, by creating imaginary greater linkages where there exists none, whose interests he is serving, one is completely bewildered. Whatever the game plan, one thing is clear; it only indicates a closed mindset, India is not yet prepared to respect the political aspirations of Kashmir. This hegemonic approach closes all doors for a dialogue and negotiated settlement of Kashmir dispute. This will only deepen and enlarge the conflict, Kashmir will continue to suffer, but peace will also not prevail in India. No body is in favour of continued death and destruction, unfortunately rulers are unable to learn the lesson.
Endnote: I am too timid to protest on the street, yet in solidarity with the people I raise my fists symbolically, while sitting in my home----no to injustice----long live the peaceful resistance. Active resistance is too precious an affair; no power on earth can snatch from us the passive resistance.
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Lastupdate on : Fri, 2 Jul 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 2 Jul 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 3 Jul 2010 00:00:00 IST
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