Frozen mindset

The leadership must break the shell and move on



Kashmiri leaders  are extremely fond of using the term of  “making Kashmiris partners of Kashmir  solution.” Who  are these Kashmiris- not Abdul Rehman of Lolab or   Ghulam Qadir of Kulgam. These are the names of  ordinary Kashmiris, who want as much good life for themselves and their children as also for their children who are looking at future with blank  looks.    Frankly speaking, these leaders, be they living in Gupkar Road  or Hyderpora or Nageen, are the same people who have picked up for themselves  the tag of true representatives of the people of Kashmir. Some claim it on the  basis of flawed elections, others live in a self belief that their calls for the general strike have made them the popular figures  in the eyes of the people. All are wrong.
The truth of the matter is  that  most of these leaders look toward Delhi. They draw their strength from Delhi and its leaders, not from the people of Kashmir. One word from one top leader of the oldest party of the  country, wipes out all worries and smiles start playing on faces and everything is forgotten about the 12 million people, who are currently engaged in a struggle to  gather the energy – new or renewable  to cook their food. There is no power, no  gas and no kerosene. A question that might be asked of these leaders- a diversion though- if a LPG cylinder cannot be arranged for the people living in Kashmir Valley, how can they deliver a political solution   to Kashmir crisis  to the satisfaction of the 12 million people of this state of Jammu and Kashmir. They are beholden to Delhi  for their survival, whether they are in the ruling elite or the Opposition. One indication from Delhi for these leaders can change the whole scenario.
When National Conference talks of the Kashmir solution – it has many questions to answer. It has been talking of Kashmir solution for decades now, where is that solution. Exasperated  people want to know, whether this solution will come by  sitting in the lap of Delhi as a coalition partner  or criticizing  it day in and day out.  There should be some explanation whether 1953 was an abominable act or was the  1975 Sheikh-  Indira accord  or call it by another name, Beg- Parthasarthy accord. Two experiences were quite bitter, then why 1986 Rajiv-Farooq friendship  accord  was  accepted. Even when it was accepted and  Farooq Abdullah resigned on January 19, 1990 as Chief Minister of the state at the behest of the then Congress leadership, which backed him  against the re-appointment of Jagmohan as Governor, why  was that accord dubbed as “ biggest blunder” by the National Conference right from Farooq Abdullah to Omar Abdullah, Sheikh Nazir and Mustafa Kamal in between.
Not that the main Opposition Peoples Democratic Party  doesn’t have to answer any of the questions. No doubt that this party has established itself as  a voice  of the people in some parts of Kashmir, particularly south Kashmir, but  what it needs to explain is that, why it is watching  each and every move of Delhi. Sometimes it reacts, on other occasions it keeps quiet.  Its leaders vociferously  speak about the problems of the people, but when the  opportunities come, those are squandered  away.  If National Conference is responsible for many things that have gone wrong in Kashmir, PDP too, has to answer why  2008 happened. it has left a permanent scar between the two  major regions of the state. Indeed, the PDP is gaining ground in Jammu now and its positive impact is surfacing in the Valley, but the old wounds are yet to be healed.  Delhi  is not panacea for all ills of  Kashmir, but  it has sensed one thing quite  ably, and that is that  it can change the course of political directions in Kashmir  any time at its own will.
It is better that this column spares other leaders of the embarrassing questions. They would never answer those, they might be sitting in Delhi or globe trotting  seeking Kashmir solution. Ask a common man in Kashmir, he wants life with dignity – not standing in endless queues for LPG cylinder nor he wants his or her fate to be decided by the leaders who  have failed to stick to a particular line. It is good to change with the times and find pragmatic solution but  that change  should not be  for  self comfort.

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Lastupdate on : Mon, 29 Oct 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 29 Oct 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 30 Oct 2012 00:00:00 IST

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