The king said, 'damn you'
Khojan Dopum Phatekhai!
OBAMA’S VISIT TO INDIA HAS PROVED THAT WE, THE SOUTH ASIANS, HAVE NOT YET BEEN ABLE TO SHUN OUR MINDSETS OF COLONIAL ERA, WRITES KING C BHARATI
Barack Obama, the President of United States of America has gone but the euphoria surrounding his visit is still visible among Indians who are busy in analysing the outcome of his visit in their own individual ways.
The grandeur of the whirlwind tour of the most powerful man on earth to India brought the glamour of the Bollywood epic Mughl-e-Azam to fore with Obama enticing the whole nation with his over 3000 strong entourage as if the great Mughal emperor Akbar’s carvan was on a roll.
However the silence during his Mumbai visit and the reactions after Delhi speech reminded me of the famous Kashmiri proverb ‘Khojan Dopum Phatekhai’ with everybody who matters in Indian sub-continent giggling over the imaginary fact that Obama vindicated his stand.
This ‘Khojan Dopum Phatekhai’ syndrome has gripped us in such a way that we forget to use our brains to draw the real conclusion of Obama’s ‘great’ visit and tend to pat our own selves over his utterances as if this was going to solve all the problems of the South Asia particularly that of Kashmir in a wink.
For the information of those who are not familiar with ‘Khojan Dopum Phatekhai’ syndrome, it was my legendry father RK Bharati who used this famous Kashmiri proverb ‘Khojan Dopum Phatekhai’ quite frequently to comment on weak-kneed people, at home in his writings and on Radio.
Once during my childhood I asked him what this ‘KDP’ was all about and he explained that during the days of yore big landlords called ‘Khoja’ used to roam alognwith their entourage of yes mans through their ‘Jagirs’ (villages) where they used to collect the ‘Jazia’ and indulge in some eve teasing in the process.
Since the ‘Khoja’ was a big and powerful man even his eve teasing was taken as a boon by the poor village girls who would giggle over the wink of the ‘Khoja’ taking it as a big compliment for their beauty.
While ‘Khoja’ used to wink on every beautiful girl the one who wanted to catch his special attention would do something to which Khoja would respond mischievously with ‘Hai Phatekhai’ (literary meaning go and explode but in local parlance indicating a personal humours and romantic touch). On hearing this, the village belle would go head-over-heels and proudly tell her friends how ‘Khoja’ winked at her and said ‘Phatekh’ little knowing that ‘Khoja’ meant nothing but his own pleasure thus establishing the proverb ‘Khojan Dopum Phatekhai’.
Well this ‘KDP’ syndrome is evident in India, Kashmir and Pakistan right from the time the ‘Khoja’ from America finally uttered the K-word terming it a longstanding dispute and in the process sending the entire Indian sub-continent into a tizzy as if the God himself had pronounced to resolve the Kashmir dispute forever.
First it was the ruling UPA, then the NDA followed by Pakistan and finally our own so-called hardcore and moderate separatists announcing loudly how Obama had vindicated their stand by uttering the K word and asking India and Pakistan to resolve the longstanding dispute; with offer of mediation only if they wanted.
Since ‘Khoja’ had finally called them ‘Phatekh’ why should anybody lag behind in satisfying his constituency terming it their victory? One wonders whose victory is it anyway. If India has won how come Pakistan and separatists are also happy? If Pakistan has won how come India is dancing to the hilt and if separatists have won how long is it going to settle the issue forever? Now if this is not the ‘KDP’ syndrome what else is it?
In fact all the three parties are lying to their respective constituencies because if anything that Obama’s visit has proved it is that we the people of South Asia have not yet been able to shun the mindsets of colonial era where everything that ‘Saheb’ says was the word of the God and for Indian’s including Kashmiris it is nothing but ‘Khojan Dopum Phatekhai’.
Leaving aside the ‘KDP’ syndrome for a while let’s examine what have we (India, Pakistan and Kashmiris) gained from Obama’s visit except the utterance of K-word and the established US response towards Kashmir dispute? Well nothing, neither practically nor virtually.
What we the slave minded people of South Asia did was to spend a few hundred cores on his visit to keep the ‘Khoja’ in good humour and remain in his good books while he like the invaders of yore came here got thousands of jobs for his people back home, orders worth billions for his own country and in return he offered established political responses without any guarantees.
Obama proved to be a fine businessman who traded words in exchange of billions of dollars while we Indians failed even to extract an assurance of full US backing for UNSC seat, easy Visas or a strong line (in favour or against) on Kashmir which he himself termed as longstanding dispute.
Obama came, he conquered, he filled his coffers and left keeping us happy saying ‘Phatekhai’; then what on earth are we celebrating over his visit?
Come on! Get out of this American hangover and realise that Obama has given you nothing instead he got everything he wanted.
It is time we leave this ‘Khoja’ syndrome and depend on our own ‘Khoja’s’ who can deliver if they really want to settle the Kashmir issue for ever.
Please understand no foreign ‘Khoja’ can help you in your problems. What can this foreign ‘Khoja’ deliver to you whose own country has been bullying the world for decades? What has America delivered to Pakistan, Iraq, Afghanistan except the fact that it bullies them the way it wants to be?
Our own ‘Khoja’s’ like, Sayed Ali Shah Geelani, Dr Manmohan Singh and Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gillani are the best bet for Kashmiris only if they come closer, forget the past and start all over again with open mind and invite all the parties to the dispute including all shades of separatists, militants, Kashmiri Pandits, political parties who matter etc to discuss the issue without any pre-conditions and work sincerely to resolve the problem.
Since Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has also said that India was not afraid of discussing K word and the ‘Khoja’ Obama has also talked about this making it an internationally acknowledged problem then what is hampering these people in discussing it openly. Heavens would not fall if India, Pakistan, PoK, Militants, Kashmiri Muslims, Kashmiri Pandits etc sit together and discuss the issue threadbare? Well instead it would be the first and the most sincere attempt to actually resolve the crisis bringing much need respite to Kashmiris be it Muslims or Kashmiri Pandits.
Till then feeling elated by a few utterances of K word by the heads of the other states is nothing but ‘Khojan Dopum Phatekh’ and we have to come out of that syndrome. Quickly we do the better it would be.
(King C Bharati is Editorial Advisor, Delhi Vision. Feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Lastupdate on : Wed, 10 Nov 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 10 Nov 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 11 Nov 2010 00:00:00 IST
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