The question of relevance
Have we really gone irrelevant. Certainly not.
WORDS WITHIN BY FIRDOUS SYED
The fellow and senior columnist of Greater Kashmir, Z G Muhammad by asking the question, “Am I still relevant?” has posed themost pertinent question. Had it been the case of an individual having qualms about his relevance or otherwise, the worthy columnist in his own erudite style has tried to find answer to the question in his column only. The question asked and the answer discovered, hence the debate ideally should end there only. However the question “Am I still relevant?”, goes much beyond the relevance of an individual. This question has a much larger ramifications; it entails the relevance of the entire Kashmiri nation. And what lies ahead of us, glory or gloom?
Individuals come and go; few make their imprint some disappear from the scene without leaving any traces behind. The celebrated ones due to their intellectual prowess or having exceptional leadership qualities are able to change the course of history. The historical figures too are not immortal; very few people continue to live beyond their lifetime. The quest to remain relevant has been the uppermost desire of the human beings. Nevertheless individuals caught with the dilemma of relevance and irrelevance is indicative of an extremely insecure mind. At times we come across awfully arrogant persons; actually these men and women are paranoid due to a profound sense of insecurity. However individual relevance is not the topic of this column.
The changing geo-politics has turned irrelevant; our political struggle is the real question. The answer to this question is in both, yes and no. There is no confusion or any intellectual ambiguity--- an effort to play safe as most of the pseudo intellectuals here have developed a habit of pleasing all. Yes is the answer; in case we regard our political struggle subservient to the external elements, as has been the case historically. Our struggle despite immense sacrifices of both men and material rendered has lost its relevance, rather completely. And no, movement will never be irrelevant; if we believe that instead of becoming an unworthy appendage of the outside powers, we are a nation [mainly] relying upon our internal strengths. As a nation I will never become irrelevant, if we hold the belief that our collective strength makes us relevant and not the rise and fall of external factors.
Let us face the brute realities. There have been many adherents to the idea of accession with a Pakistan based upon two-nation theory, in the valley. Till recently, it was a popular demand. We may differ with the ideology of Pakistan, the idea of Pakistan still excites many in the valley, is a hard fact. Ideas, in a society particularly since our minds are drilled day in and day out with the propaganda that we belong to a democratic society, are to be debated and not derided. And ideas can never be destroyed, people with conviction have every right to pursue their ideology, albeit peacefully. Lately, precisely since the advent of armed struggle the slogan of independent Kashmir became popular, here. Two-nation theory based upon religion has well defined contours; the proponents of Independent Kashmir have failed to fully develop the idea of independent Kashmir. In case the unique identity of Kashmir draws its inspiration from Islam, then why not to merge in Pakistan instead of striving for another Muslim state, in the close proximity of a Muslim state. If Kashmir has to emerge as a secular democracy consisting only of Muslims----the Dogras of Jammu and Buddhists of Leh will never like to break away from India--- why not to join India straightway? Whether we agree or not, India as a democratic country has better credentials. Can we afford another partition? And why to undergo a bloodshed? If the dream is to have secular independence, for half a state, consisting only of valley? The proponents of independent Kashmir are not the only confused ones. The greatest votary of accession to Pakistan Syed Ali Geelani also wants to have some sort of internal autonomy once Kashmir becomes part of Pakistan. The Jammu and Kashmir was granted special status within Indian union in order to safeguard the Muslim character of Kashmir within majority Hindu population of India otherwise a democratic country. Either Kashmir has to remain with India off course having a significant autonomous status with greater constitutional guarantees. Or else Kashmir should strive hard to join Pakistan on the basis of its religious identity. Kashmir has to decide between Islamic ideology and secular democracy anything in between is sheer confusion.
The hybrid kind of status----Islamic identity as well as secular democracy--- a influential section of the intellectuals here aspires is confusing, the mother of all ills plaguing Kashmir. The profound intellectual perplexity is highly indicative of the ideological bankruptcy. Pakistan armed JKLF,--- not the local boys directly but likes of Aman Kahn and other stalwarts of independent Kashmir ideology based in Rawalpindi had worked out an arrangement with Pak military establishment---- to wage an armed struggle against India. Is it not ironical that idea of independent Kashmir was imported to our part of Kashmir from the training camps situated across the border, in 1989? The emotions against New Delhi are real, but 1990 uprising was directly sponsored by Pakistan. The movement in Kashmir after every passing day is becoming weaker and weaker solely because Pakistan badly embroiled in its internal critical crisis even threatening its very existence, is not able to support armed struggle in Kashmir, is point in case. That is the reason why Geelani has suddenly discovered that gun has failed to deliver. In the heydays of militancy he otherwise issued long fatwa’s branding as traitors anyone daring to question the utility of the gun. Likewise, since Pakistan has lost clout to strike a hard bargain with India, suddenly our intellectuals have discovered that Kashmir has become, irrelevant.
Why blame the present breed of intellectuals, who in December 2010 had gleefully predicted the coming year to be year of reckoning for the resolution of Kashmir, and in the middle of the year are suffering from the pangs of irrelevance. The towering Sheikh Abdullah was forced to sign on the dotted lines, described as 1975 accord. Only after Indira Gandhi and Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto had reached an agreement in 1972 in Shimla that Kashmir is a “bilateral issue” and changed the 1949 UN Cease-fire Line dividing the Kashmir’s into the Line of Control (LOC), after the dismemberment of Pakistan. Who can deny that the 1972 Shimla agreement is not the harbinger of the so called sale out of 1975? After the Bangladesh war only, is it not true that Plebiscite Front became obsolete? Pakistan faced with another existential crisis, Kashmir’s political struggle has become irrelevant? Our resistance is not based upon any conviction, ideology that would have provided it inner strength and force to keep momentum, irrespective of Pakistan’s ability or inability to support the freedom movement. Pakistan due to its own internal problems could not support the movement any longer, we surrendered in 1975. Again Pakistan has lost steam and is floundering; we run the risk of becoming irrelevant.
India has never accepted APHC as a respected and separate entity. It considers movement in Kashmir extension of Pak ISI. Ideological people even believing in the idea of Pakistan, through determination and strength of their conviction may be able to acquire the respect of their adversary, not the agents on the payroll of an intelligence agency. In our case most of the so called APHC leaders accept brief as well as briefcase from the intelligence agencies of both India and Pakistan. Why we grieve to have become irrelevant?
“Kashmir leaders- tall or dwarf”. There is no tall leader in Kashmir, all due to their ideological inconsistency and mercenary antics have proved to be dwarf and pygmies. When armed struggle was at its peak even Prime Minister of India not to speak of home minster or host of other Indian politicians were keen to shake hands with an area commander. Now when militant pressure has substantially eased out for India, New Delhi wants tall Hurriyat leaders to contact the three interlocutors. Statements made by these leaders are not taken seriously in Zena Kadal now. Living in fool’s paradise we still expect that paper missiles to have any bearing in Delhi, or Islamabad.
Ideology based movement again in order to emphasize the point, even for Pakistan, will draw its strength from its conviction; occasional setbacks will hardly make it irrelevant. On the contrary, movement solely dependent upon the external factors for its existence will surely depend on the foreign elements. When Islamabad gains strength, resistance against New Delhi in Kashmir gets strong. Similarly movement in Kashmir loses its impact the moment Pakistan becomes weak. This question is for not pro Pak elements alone but mainly directed to the proponents of Independence Kashmir, does this movement still qualify to be an indigenous struggle?
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Lastupdate on : Fri, 15 Jul 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 15 Jul 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 16 Jul 2011 00:00:00 IST
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