Paradise in “Omnishambles”!

The Oxford’s word of the year for Britain aptly describes Kashmir’s present situation in all respects!



The word “Omnishambles” is a combination of two words, Omni meaning all and shambles meaning total disorder. It describes a situation which is in total disorder from all perspectives. According to Wikipedia the term was coined by Tony Roche in the BBC series on political satire, “The Thick of it”. The term was popularised by the Labour leader Ed Miliband while describing the budget which according to him had every type of tax in shambles and was thus an omnishambles budget. The word became internationally famous when Mitt Romney criticised London’s preparations for Olympics. The word was first picked up by Collins as a political phrase and on November 13, the Oxford English Dictionary named it as the word of the year!
Had all those people been observing Kashmir situation for past sometime, they would have coined the word long back! Kashmir’s political situation landed itself in omnishambles right from 1947 when it got locked up in an ideological war between the two newly created neighbouring countries. In fact, the British had a major role in ensuring that the place lands in omnishambles for their own larger and long term strategic interests! Well, the political situation has now turned into a Gordian knot which no one is able to untie. However, what is most relevant in the present context are the daily living conditions of the people. These are truly as described by Mitt Romney for Olympics and Ed Miliband for U.K. budget, in true sense of the word, in omnishambles.
The first of the omnishambles has occurred in LPG on which these days almost entire Kashmir depends for cooking and heating. Kashmiris had been traditionally used to hearths burning firewood. Our grannies would cook food on the hearth and use burning charcoal from it to fill the kangris, another Kashmiri innovation to warm oneself by keeping it under the pheran, the robe commonly used by people in winter. Then we were modernised and the gas replaced everything. All sorts of gadgets worked on gas. Cooking ranges, heating stoves, and lately even the automobiles used the now famous LPG. Before the advent of LPG we had been attuned to putting everything on the electric power. Unfortunately, in spite of the fact that we have the largest resources for generating hydropower, we face a power famine especially during the harsh winters. Our own so called leaders mortgaged our power resources to outsiders which resulted in its going into omnishambles. People had somehow reconciled to the power famine and had found LPG as a good and viable alternative. Suddenly, without any warning, the people were struck by a bolt from the blue. The issue of the subsidised LPG cylinders were capped from 12 to 6 and then a general verification of all the consumers was initiated. This resulted in LPG shambles. The companies stopped verification when even 30% are yet to be verified. All new subsidised connections have been banned.
If one counts the shambles in Kashmir, there are umpteen of these! The healthcare is in the worst shambles. Traffic is in mother of all shambles. The roads are in shambles. The education is in shambles. Panches and Sarpanches are in shambles. All public institutions are in shambles in one or the other way. The courts are in shambles. To top it all, the system of accountability which could sort out the shambles, is itself in total shambles!
The Oxford Dictionary which has adopted the word as the Britain’s word of the year needs to give a foot-note in its explanation. They should say that if one really wants to understand the true meaning of the word, he should visit Kashmir which is now a “Paradise in Omnishambles!”

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Lastupdate on : Mon, 19 Nov 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 19 Nov 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 20 Nov 2012 00:00:00 IST

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