Towards peace

An urge for violence-free Kashmir is taking roots in the people
Towards peace

The huge 2019 mandate in favour of BJP and NDA under theleadership of Narendra Modi leads to a new history in the making. The Lok Sabhaelections in 1984, which were swept by the sympathy wave (due to theassassination of Indira Gandhi by her own security guards) erupted into anunprecedented result in favour of Congress in the political history of thenation. But that was an extraordinary election which cannot be compared withany other normal or ordinary election in India.

Since 1984, the country saw eight general elections to theLok Sabha

upto 2009, that led various political parties to a belief ofcoalition politics. The Alliances were accepted by all as compulsion of Indianpolitics. The jinx was broken in 2014 when a single party, the BJP, got a sufficientmandate with 282 seats (for the first time in history) under the stewardship ofModi. He gave a new meaning to the electoral politics of India when he askedpeople in 2014 to trust his promises (vaadey) to them. People did the same andexperienced five years' BJP/NDA rule for five years. The year 2019 brought anentirely different scenario before the voters of India ie, the people wereappealed by Modi and BJP, this time to trust their intent (Iraadey) on thebasis of their experiences with the government for the last five years. Thoughthe opposition at regional and national level made it a fierce battle with thehelp of a divided combination of media, intellectuals, known and unknownpolitical pundits yet the BJP and the enlarged NDA swept the polls. It wasvirtual rout for most of the political entities. People voted overwhelminglydefying the so-called anti-incumbency factor and the negative campaignunleashed by the opposition.

The Mandate2019 is a phenomenal result, 45% plus votes infavour of NDA in a multiparty parliamentary democracy is a huge mandateparticularly when it got translated into a near two third majority in the LokSabha for the NDA. The moral of the story remains that the Modi Charisma workedand worked to the hilt. Such a huge Mandate is a big responsibility on theshoulders of the new establishment and BJP has assumed a special responsibilityto fulfill the people's aspirations and deliver accordingly.

People in general have expectations on a number of frontsfrom the dispensation in the saddle and Kashmir is one of them. Jammu andKashmir has been bleeding for the last three decades unabatedly despite anumber of intermittent attempts to bring calm. The whole nation wants Kashmirto be peaceful and relieved of the menace of terrorism that has been the causeof bloodshed in Jammu & Kashmir.

It is a welcome step that many in and outside Kashmir haveexpressed their desire for peace in Jammu & Kashmir. The establishment ofpeace is incidental to elimination of terrorism in the state. Amarnath Yatra ison our head and its success will speak for itself about the situation onground. Anybody with an illegal gun in Kashmir or outside Kashmir or a personhaving even the slightest sympathy with the men with gun needs to realise that30 years of bloodbath has killed more than one hundred thousand people in thestate, resulted in the exodus of the indigenous people of the Kashmirvalley-the Kashmiri Pandits, radicalized the Kashmir society, destroyedthousands of houses in Kashmir including the temples and shrines in the valley,dismembered the tourism industry and left a scar on the image of KashmiriMuslims throughout the world. It is time to introspect, review, reconsider andreform. Kashmir has lost three generations to achieve the unachievable.

The political leaders of Kashmir ab initio committedthemselves to two fault lines i,e, One was pro-Pakistan line and the second waspro-India line. Their interpretation of the first line led to the secessionistpolitics and consequently to terrorism having religious goals as guidingpostulates. The second line led to the so-called mainstream politics wherein itwas suggested that the accession was "limited and conditional" andJ&K was a special state which needed special status and treatment. Article370, 35-A and the other such dispensation was considered sacrosanct and anychange in it was made to believe as the political blasphemy. The second linewas also guided by the religious dictum presuming that the J&K was a Muslimmajority state and its Muslim majority character and precedence in all walks oflife needed protection.

It was the Congress which succumbed to these two lines andhobnobbed with various catagories of people in J&K for it's own survivaland vested interest and made a total mess in the state. BJP kept opposing boththe lines and talked in terms of total integration first as Bhartiya Jan Sanghand then as BJP.  BJP which has a strongbackground of RSS has come to the centre stage of the Indian politics at alllevels and it stands committed to its ideology and election manifesto. Peopleall over India and also in the J&K state flooded its ideological dams withvotes and aspirations which are core to J&K state being an integral part ofIndia. No government in India can muster guts to oppose the aspirations andmandate of the people of India that vividly describe Accession as full andfinal and speak in terms of abrogation of Article 370 and Article 35A.

The peace seekers who would like to cease the opportunity,whether it is the so-called mainstream circle, secessionist camp or the civilsociety, need to bear two things in mind. One that with the appointment of AmitShah as the Union Home Minister and the BJP's focus on Kashmir through variousappointments and plans, the party in power has authored its preferences.Second, politics is a game of patience, consistency and intent…..the Kashmirwatchers and activists cannot ignore the writing on the wall.

The new urge for peace is for some a mirage, but those whomake history convert mirages into reality. Kashmir beckons its lovers to thinkafresh and give this urge for peace a real and affordable chance…….!

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