Hollow slogans

File Photo [Image for representational purpose only]

Peoples Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) is claiming that it would get everything back, including Article 370. It’s the slogan that has been coined to make a comeback. When the Kashmir based parties, including National Conference, Peoples Democratic Party, Peoples Conference and others, entered into an alliance, and named it as PAGD, they announced that their fight is for a bigger cause and power is not their aim.

Soon after the District Development Council (DDC) elections were announced in Jammu and Kashmir, the PAGD took a U-turn and announced its decision to contest these polls. The move surprised many people. The alliance which had claimed that it has got nothing to do with power politics jumped into fray for the elections for development boards. These boards have no role except to frame up the plans, but these boards get lot of money, and if the PAGD candidates win these elections they can once again become rich. Someone needs to ask the PAGD leaders, is money the cause they are fighting for?

The PAGD is claiming that it will get everything back and jumping into the DDC poll fray is the first step towards it. Someone needs to tell these politicians that the DDC members have no role in framing laws, nor are they empowered to take any important decisions. So how come it’s the first step towards getting the Article 370 back?

When the Centre announced its decision to revoke Article 370 on August 5, 2019, National Conference had three Members in the Parliament and Peoples Democratic Party had two. When five MPs couldn’t do anything to prevent the revocation of the Article 370 what can DDC members do to bring it back.

Mainstream leaders in Kashmir should stop telling lies to people. For seventy years they kept on telling lies to the people and sold illusions to them. Till August 5, 2019, these leaders used to tell the people that autonomy and self-rule are in offing and Kashmir can become a bridge between India and Pakistan with soft borders. When they used to be out of power the same leaders used to talk about Azadi and Pakistan.

After Farooq Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti were released they issued controversial statements. Abdullah went on to say that Article 370 could be restored with China’s help, while Mehbooba said that she won’t hold the tricolor till J&K’s State flag is restored. These assertions triggered backlash and the voices to book both these leaders under sedition had become shriller.

Leaders of the Gupkar alliance should bear in mind that times have changed and they can no more hoodwink the people. They stand exposed and are in no position to sell dreams again. Their time has ended. They can no more blackmail the Centre nor can they hoodwink the common people anymore.

Kashmiris are aware of the fact that these leaders are fooling and deceiving and misleading them and New Delhi for the past seven decades, just for their own vested interest. They are only interested in power and for that they can go to any extent. They can manufacture issues, create fear and even instigate people to ensure that they remain relevant.

Everyone is aware of the fact that forthcoming DDC polls are no big elections and these are being held for empowering the grassroots democratic institutions, which have got nothing to do with the Article 370 or J&K’s conversion into a union territory.

These leaders till date have not even explained the purpose of the DDC elections to the people. They are projecting only one reason for their participation i.e., they will get Article 370 back and J&K would once again be the same. They are once again indulging in the politics of deceit. During the past one year it has become crystal clear that the Centre won’t restore J&K’s special status and the case filed by Kashmir based mainstream parties in the Apex Court to seek restoration of the Articles 370 and 35-A will keep on going.

The PAGD leaders have come together only to seek access to power corridors so that they don’t remain deprived of the benefits which they have been getting for the past 70-years.