Dogras Lack A State, Dr Karan Singh Regrets

SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir’s last and the only Sadr-e-Reyasat, heir apparent Dr Karan Singh has said the Dogras are the only ethnicity that lacks a state and they have always been seen as an attachment to Kashmir. A veteran Congress leader, Dr Singh had delivered the second Kunwar Voyogi Memorial Lecture on Role of Dogras in Indian History in the Jammu University.

Dr Karan Singh

“Dogras never got their due share because they have no State like Tamils, Banglas, Kannadas etc that would further their interests,” Jammu newspaper Daily Excelsior quoted Dr Singh saying. “They (Dogras) are always seen as an attachment to Kashmir although they have distinct culture and identity.”

“Describing Dogras as half the Union Territory and only ethnic community in India without the State of their own, Dr Karan Singh said that lack of political leadership was responsible for failure of the community to get its due share,” the newspaper reported. “He reminded that except Ghulam Nabi Azad, all Chief Ministers of J&K State in the last 70 years were from Kashmir.”

Dr Singh took a few jibes on the fellow Dogras. “They are so individualists that they don’t want anybody to emerge. We have never been able to get together even in past and present,” he said, according to the newspaper.

At the same time, however, Dr Singh admitted that the importance of Jammu is being recognised in the UT. “Kashmir is still perhaps the main focus but the importance of Jammu is increasingly recognized,” he said. Dr Sngh asked Dogras across the world to keep their identity, language alive and suggested the use of social media in “setting the narrative right”.

Dr Singh hoped that the new textbooks now being included in the curriculum will acknowledge the role of Dogras towards the consolidation of India. “It should be presented in the correct light so that people can know about the important role the Dogra warriors played in the History of India,” he has said.

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