By uncovering Hari Singh's statue they are obliterating our history
WORDS WITHIN BY FIRDOUS SYED
Why we have been asked to observe a strike today? If at all the myopic leadership was feeling compelled in view of Ghulam Nabi Fai’s ongoing ordeal to call for a protest, the best course of action was to ask a protest in solidarity with Fai instead of registering a protest against a criminal prosecution that too when convict has consciously pleaded guilty to the charges of “conspiracy and tax violations”.
Due to their little appreciation of the issues, the resistance leaders have repeatedly belittled themselves. Fai’ intentions may not be questionable; his controversial dealings are under scanner. Despite the best intentions Fai becoming a conduit even to serve the cause is a serious issue. However the topic of this column per se is not Fai’s prosecution, the misplaced priorities of the so called resistance leadership is the haunting question that needs to be probed this week. (In one of the columns in the coming weeks, it may be worthwhile to explore the question; how Fai very nearly through his high profile wheeling and dealing blurred a fine distinction between a freedom fighter and an intelligence operator.)
The most pertinent issue that demands the undiluted attention of the leadership is how to strengthen and protect Kashmir’s political character. On the contrary by focusing over non-issues that hardly serves any national interest, precious energy is being wasted. Last week all of sudden, as a symbol of Dogra misplaced assertion, a statue of a former ruler Hari Singh was unveiled in Jammu. What does this entail? But more important is the question, can such an act of political vandalism, solely directed at to undermine Kashmir’s heroic resistance against the one of the most oppressive ruler, easily be tolerated. Statue of Hari Singh is an insult to the martyrs of 1931. It is an effort to mock the cherished memory of enormous sacrifices made by the people of Jammu and Kashmir to over through the autocracy. It is unbecoming of Congress leaders that fully exposes their cheap mentality and dirty vote bank politics. Before uncovering him why the present breed of Congress leaders like to forget the history, is it not a fact that Hari Singh in 1946 got arrested Nehru while he tried to enter the state as a mark of solidarity with Quit Kashmir movement against the Dogra rule? What has changed today that could justify the glorification of a king, why this affront to Kashmir’s freedom movement. Don’t tell us that this is the compulsory cost Kashmir has to pay in lieu of a failed rebellion.
The small minds are playing with fire. Hari Singh’s statue is an endeavour to rewrite the history. Forced and fabricated narratives cannot change the character of a movement. Hari Singh’s statue will not change the reality. However, the clowning-around of the political jokers only reveals that how petty the small minds have now become. Regardless of petty mindedness, why the National Conference leadership has stooped so low and lost the understanding of historical processes? The power has incapacitated the National Conference leaders to the extent that a murmur of protest against the vandalisation of political heritage seems to be beyond their reach now. Struggle against Hari Singh’s regime is the only worthwhile contribution of Sheikh Abdullah, everything else he did is controversial that only brought miseries upon his people. NC divorced from its rich past may still survive as an opportunistic ruling clique; unable to script anymore the destiny of Kashmir NC has already been consigned to the dustbin of history. No regrets, NC’s fate is making of its own. Way back discarding its historical role, it chose power over people’s welfare. Ironically the resistance leadership too is unable to learn from history; soon they will also discover themselves in the oblivion.
Struggle against Hari Singh is not only Sheikh Clan’s legacy, its part of our freedom movement and collective memory. The present resistance leaders including the civil society and so called intelligentsia failing to take notice of the attempts to distort the historical processes will ultimately lead to devastation of Kashmir’s political character. How Congress leaders will respond to the suggestion of erecting a statue of Gen. Dyer in Jallianwala Bagh? Obviously that will amount to nullifying the incident of a human slaughter or else glorification of carnage. Likewise the statue of Hari Singh means that Kashmir never ever waged its own struggle against the autocracy and the present political arrangement is the outcome of greater political developments taking place in the sub-continent. Isn’t it an effort to obliterate the history of Kashmir’s freedom struggle and in the process also deprive it of its unique character? Otherwise what is the palpable reason behind his glorification?
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Lastupdate on : Fri, 6 Apr 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 6 Apr 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 7 Apr 2012 00:00:00 IST
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