A Jokers Jaunt

As the BJP state president Shamsher Singh Manhas started introducing his party’s delegation of lawmakers on a study tour of the state in the lawns of Srinagar circuit house, his formalities and Hindi left many laughing.

Laughing became a norm after Rajnath Singh started briefing the press about the purpose of the visit.

“We have come to study the situation of J&K,” Singh, a former BJP president, said. The delegation met 25-30 delegations in Jammu and intends to meet as many as possible in Kashmir as long as they will not have to “knock at the doors of the people”.

J&K, he said, is an integral part of India which is non-negotiable. That is why, he asserted, when there is problem in Kashmir it pains whole of India. “But we want to know what are the facts in J&K,” he said. Somebody quipped – “What were you doing since 1947?” – forcing reporters to laugh.

A reporter asked if Kashmir is non-negotiable what the BJP will offer the separatists. Prompt came the reply that the party is not going to meet them but if they (separatists) want to meet the delegation. They eventually ended up visiting the family of slain leader of Jamiat-e-Ahlihadith in Lal Bazar.

BJP wants to settle the problem, said Singh very clearly. “We will do it within the ambit of justice and humanity that is already enshrined in the constitution,” he said and it triggered another series of laughter. “Everybody should get justice, no discrimination with anybody. We will go to Ladakh and come again and we will make a report.” Another laughter.

Somebody asked: “You referred to the problem, is it the Kashmir dispute?” The leader responded: No. And then he started talking about the problems of J&K that obviously had “alleged discrimination” on the top of it.

Rajnath Singh was accompanied by Syed Shahnawaz Hussain, Ravi Shanker Prasad, Ms Maya Singh, J P Nanda and JK Jain.  They said they will create report on J&K that will be handed over to the party president and will also be discussed in the parliament. It will be a vision paper for the party on J&K.

As everybody was ridiculing the utterances, nobody knew that the party was actually investing in its burial in Jammu where its lawmakers were busy selling their mandate!

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