The red events  

S Rehman

Elections are back with the spate of killings. The precursor to the event is just the ‘reminder of the bullets and blood’ that witnessed the parliamentary elections early this year. The killings uncannily assume proportions whenever some big event is in the offing.

While parliamentary polls in Kashmir were ‘decorated’ with the deaths of scores of Sarpanchs and Panchs, the state polls have started with the volley of bullets being pumped on teenagers, leaving two of them bloody dead. The innocents become soft targets of the bigger game plan. The plan that unceremoniously has an impact on the multiple lives associated with them.

But how does that matter. To achieve a bigger goal, the lives of incipient people hardly could be a matter of concern and re-thought. And why should that be? The inferior people, the second rate citizens, who always crib upon one or the other issue could be treated as slaughter animals. Being nothing better worth than that!

The amazing factor in the whole scenario is that the people oblivious of the hidden plans run in flocks on the finger signal of those who craft the net fabric for their death traps.

The prelude to the Lok Sabha elections this spring witnessed the similar pattern of deaths and threats. Is it something to do with the elections? The threats, at that point in time, to the Panchayat members and then the ‘trail of killings’, days before the actual election days came to a sudden halt once the elections were over.

No threats, no deaths after elections! Does it mean the protagonists of ‘the Kashmir Freedom Movement’ stopped its operations after elections? Or, the presence of Sarpanchs and Panchs stopped pricking the balloon of ‘love for freedom’ after elections? Or, the ‘Freedom Fighters’ become active only during elections and rest of the time they are in hibernation? Or, there is some ‘Master Plan’ from the opponents who use the ‘Freedom Movement’ to their favour by furtively cloaking their identity by slipping into the mantle of ‘Freedom fighters’ during elections to push their clandestine agenda?

In this case, no clarification did come from the ‘Freedom fighters’ either, which construes that they either let the opponents play ‘their role’ (though to their sheer disadvantage), or do not care even if the opponents embark upon their plan to their success.

Both the prepositions connote lack of planning and counter-planning on the part of ‘Freedom fighters’ when the struggle hinges less upon peripheral matters and is more of a mental fight.

Going a layer deeper, it seems that the value of human life in Kashmir is precariously hanging on the planning of those who hold the strings and determine the postures of these events in which they ought to unfold. The planners are, however, the ones who plan on mathematical terms without taking into cognizance the real facts and in the name of scientific planning: pump the bullets without rhyme or reason.

The killings prior to parliamentary polls had an impact on the voter turnout; and had its own expected political ramifications, though, the outcomes are yet to be understood.

Whatever the reasons that would have been discussed during brainstorming sessions leading to ‘decision of killings’, the result seems to outplay the purpose. Every time the killings have taken place with some hidden purpose, the manifestations have proved the planners wrong.

But in all cases, the losers have been the common Kashmiris. It has been all along, and Kashmir has been witnessing for the last 25 years now: whenever an event is in the offing, some heads are destined to drop, and blood is supposed to colour the soil.

(The author is Srinagar-based financial expert)

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