With New Delhi’s Machiavellian reaction to the Muslim United Front’s endeavour to use democratic institutions of India for the resolution of Kashmir quagmire in 1987, it was stark and blatantly conspicuous that the prototype of any person from the state, wishing to contest elections has been pre-determined. An important characteristic of this Delhi-made-archetype is to recognize India’s claim on the entire territory of J&K and that there is no dispute about Kashmir, except that Pak-administered-Kashmir needs to be reclaimed by India. Although, United Nations does allow us to contest elections for running the administrative affairs alone but then, India has back-paddled and retroceded from its UN promises, long back. This is the reason Hurriyat Constitution, in 1993, didn’t allow any participation in Indian elections, from that point onwards. It was perceived that after such an open revelation by India about its stance, why would any of us give legitimacy to such an exercise, especially when it is to be used as a product for sale, in international markets, to petrify Indian stand on Kashmir? Majority of people concluded that the only people, whose hunger for power and love for temporal riches superseded their conscience would be ready for such a trade-off. This is why ‘Nashnel (National Conference) and Kangreas (Congress)’ became widely-used pejoratives for them.
However, with the advent of People’s Democratic Party (PDP), some simpletons in the state, out of their optimism, saw it as a lesser evil. Not because of any track-record but simply because a long treacherous era of National Conference (NC) had shown so much blood to the people, that anyone opposing them had a natural advantage. Due to the lack of knowledge, such people even forgot Mufti Sayeed’s Home Ministry tenure, in which notorious governor Jagmohan was appointed and thousands were massacred to suppress the movement. Under the influence of Mufti’s green colour, ‘Self Rule’ document and desperate to see a thaw in Indian approach, they elected PDP to power in 2002. Apart from distance signs to Muzaffarabad and Musharraf’s photo on few banners, there was no headway viz-a-viz political dimension of Kashmir. Of late, NC-Congress rule again oversaw hundreds of children being killed in peaceful uprisings and failed to deliver justice. This gave a fillip to anti-incumbency, which worked in favour of PDP again, in 2014 assembly elections. This factor was coupled with the fear psychosis of BJP’s entry into the power corridors of the state. People’s participation in the election was unprecedented, to keep the BJP out. Confidence would exude from many people about the success in elections and then the subsequent performance of the PDP in office.
Their supporters used all the arguments to portray PDP as the saviour of Kashmir’s identity and the only force in Kashmir which could stop BJP’s entry into the state. This is what made them the single largest party with 28 seats in the state assembly. Interestingly, now they are about to marry the same BJP, which they said needs to be resisted. BJP has never been in power in J&K and has no constituency in Kashmir valley. It is being invited by the PDP which will enable it to establish itself in the valley. This is like a typical trap of a Bollywood flick where a close relative of an orphan girl pretends to be her protector from the villain, earns her trust and then betrays it by selling her off to the same villain, for a bottle of wine. How unfortunate and innocent are my people? I wish they were treated as humans rather than expendables.
Ironically, these politicians are fully aware that they are wrong and do have a speck of guilt in them. Let me substantiate. DNA on Jan30th, 2015 reported “the PDP wants the swearing-in ceremony to take place around February 15, to avoid the date to coincide with the death anniversaries of Afzal Guru and Maqbool Bhatt”. Why would these dates be politically incorrect for them, if they knew their politics was pro-people? And if the dates on which Kashmiris have been killed by the powers that be, are inauspicious then there is not a single date in the calendar on which an innocent Kashmiri has not been murdered. The point I want to make is that at least, as far as my opinion goes, the main job description of the local government in J&K is merely to exist, which is what legitimizes Delhi’s viewpoint on Kashmir. The state is run by the Home Ministry. The development, which should have been the main thrust, is just a façade. The little development work, which they do, could have been done even by the governor, had there been no elected government in place. This is why I believe in my theory of predetermined archetypes, which you have to fit yourself in, in order to be what we call ‘a pro-India Kashmiri politician’. May peace with dignity prevail!
Mehboob Makhdoomi is an MBA from Pennsylvania University (IUP) United States with a research degree from Cardiff University, United Kingdom. Email: [email protected]