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Aug 9, 2008

Shri Amarnath Land issue – What is the Problem…!!!

For last 38 days, the region of Jammu has been burning. Well, you have already read enough about it… and probably already formed your own firm opinion about it. And if you have been following it in the national media – well most probably you are already a victim of the pseudo-secular campaign…


But then if anyone reading this post believes they have a clear idea on what the problem is – please enlighten me.

Enlighten me – because the explanations and stories perpetrated by the leadership from Kashmir valley – Mehbooba, Mirwaiz Umar, Yasin Malik or Omar Abdullah’s – has a lot of politically suave rhetoric and well crafted statements – but no logic nor any real answers. Unfortunately, the national media – both electronic (NDTV, IBN-CNN, etc) and the press are too over-awed by the separatists and blinded by their word – that the real reasons don’t hit their ear drums. The NDTV, TIMES NOW and CNN-IBN’s are busy branding the agitating masses of Jammu as communal.


Irony of modern India – people holding aloft Indian tri-colour and demanding justice are shot at with contempt.

Yesterday, I asked the very same question – what is the problem – to Omar Abdullah on his post about the issue. This morning – I realize he has decided to step out of the blogosphere – to avoid any such uncomfortable questions. I challenge Omar to republish those comments and questions in his blog again – if he has the honesty to prove that there was a single word of personal abuse in those questions. Maybe Omar realized that its easy to sermonize on TV and in Parliament – where no one cross questions you and no one calls your bluff. The TV anchors are more concerned about their image and the next TV awards – and thus there is a urge for competitive pseudo-secularist journalism. After all, Barkha Dutt and Rajdeep wouldn’t be getting stars and brownies from pseudo-intellectuals if they were to cross question the terrorists of the valley – Yasin Malik and Umar Farooq’s – on their self-certification of secularism. Only in India – can a Shabir Shah or a Yasin Malik come on national TV and claim that the Kashmiri Muslim is secular by nature – after having silently eliminated all of Kashmiri Pandit population from the valley 20 years ago.


The beginning


We all know how we got to the current situation. So I am not going to waste more bytes going through the chronology of events.


The PDP-Congress govt issued the order for temporary allocation of land to Shri Amarnath Shrine Board for use of creating facilities on a temporary basis for the yatris.

The fundamentalists in the valley felt infuriated by any attention being paid to a Hindu cause – something the Talibani element of the valley has already been working against right from the days of ethnic cleansing of the valley – when they purged all the Kashmiri Pandits from the valley in 1990. They have so meticulously been working on destruction of all temples and Hindu religious establishments in the valley in last two decades, completing the Talibanization of the valley. (Read more about that…)


The objections of the jihadi elements were taken up by Hurriyat – who promptly went onto the streets in the valley protesting against a mere 40 hectares of land being allocated for the yatra.

Why? What was the argument they were protesting against – None!

Well – they tried many illogical reasons and arguments – as Lalit has dissected and proven how absurb each of them are in his write up here


With Hurriyat taking a lead on this issue, PDP was forced to eat its own words and do a volte-face on something they were responsible for. Typical of PDP anyways, isn’t it. Mufti has always been hand in glove with the terrorists – right from the days of his Home Minister-ship – when the much doubted drama of his daughters adduction was enacted to facilitate the release of terrorists. Mufti could not be seen doing something terrorists don’t approve of. So on went Mehbooba and other PDP leaders – sharing space with other terrorists and separatist leaders – Geelani, Mirwaiz and Yasin Malik etc…


Well, with PDP grabbing the vote bank so fast in the valley – Omar Abdullah and his National Conference was too forced to compete for the communal agenda. Didn’t matter that it was NC government and act led by his father – who instituted the SASB…


Well… when it comes to competitive appeasement of Muslims – how can Congress governments be seen lagging behind - and so Ghulam Nabi Azad withdrew the order – and succumbed to the communal terrorists and separatists without a fight.


Talibanisation 1 – Secularism 0


And the valley celebrated – the whole of India saw the celebrations on the withdrawal of the orders. It was hailed as the victory of Kashmiri Nationalism.


What? Yes, you read it right…

No one dared question and ask – what victory and for what issue? Least expected from the Indian media anyways…

So – again – if you think you know what the problem with the land transfer is – please enlighten me. Because even Omar Abdullah doesn’t seem to know.


First – they argued about environment – then about demographic changing designs of India and Palestine-style resettlements – and many other stupid excuses which they themselves couldn’t justify.

So as a last resort came out the diatribe of Kashmiri nationalism - as Omar and many other politicians from the valley have parroted –


‘It’s a matter of our land. We won’t give land for the yatra’


And this was the crux of their Kashmiriyat and Kashmiri Nationalism. Omar said this in the parliament and Mehbooba and others several times in the media. “We wont give our land”. But who is this ‘we’. The land of Jammu and Kashmir doesn’t belong to Kashmiri Muslims alone. So how did the government of the day unilaterally assume that the objection to the transfer by muslims of the valley was the objection of the whole state. The Kashmiri Muslim leaders – mainstream and terrorists alike – didn’t give a damn about the sentiments of the Kashmiri Pandit’s – already bruised and hurt by their ethnic cleansing – or that of other Hindu population of the state.


Who is this ‘we’ when they talk of this land ownership? Its only a segment of the Kashmiri Muslims – no one else and the objection is purely religious bias. Then how is it that they are not branded communal? The problem was communalized by the valley from day one… Yet no one will dare call spade a spade.



What is this objection of letting Shri Amarnath Shrine Board use the land -for even just two months of the yatra duration at a cost? Its not about environment, its not about settlements – its purely about letting life to a last Hindu vestige in the valley.


The Talibani elements so prevalent within the valley – in form of Hurriyat and others – have almost completed the Nizam-e-Mustafa agenda. Allowing revival of any Hindu symbols is totally unacceptable. They have been already pushing for curtailing of the yatra – which Mufti has been on record for demanding. Mufti has for years been pushing for cutting down the yatra to 15 days – in garb of Nitesh Sengupta recommendation. Yet, he and rest of them have a problem allowing land under the same commission’s recommendation.


I asked Omar the very same questions yesterday – what is the problem with the use of land. Answers he had none.



‘The yatra is already going on and uses 32 km route along the way. Then what is the need for 40 hectares of land. Let the state govt provide the facilities – why do you need the Shrine board?’


But what Omar argued instead was – what’s the need for 800 kanals to be set aside for creating facilities, when the yatra has been going on for so many years – and using 4000 kanals.

True – the yatra has been going on – and been using the entire route from Lakhinpur in Jammu to the sacred cave…not the 32 km route from Pahalgam to the shrine or the 14km route from Baltal, along the route. And something the Kashmiri Muslims readily take credit for allowing even today… Should the Indians be grateful for them for having allowed the yatra so far? Maybe, that’s what they imply…

The 40 hectares of land were meant to provide temporary pre-fabricated shelters to the yatris’ – along the treacherous route which is prone to hostile weather every year. Facilities which don’t exist today – or have been abysmally insufficient. If the state govt were capable and interested in providing these – they would have done so already. But that has not happened. And that was not the case either in 1996, when 256 people died in hailstorms and snow during the yatra – due to lack of proper shelters and medical facilities. We all know how pathetic JKTDC is in its existing role – and entrusting them with taking care of yatra would be absolutely ridiculous.


Forget 1996, even last month – three people died on the yatra route due to weather calamities – forcing the suspension of yatra for some days. Had those ‘facilities’ already been existing as claimed by these leaders – these lives wouldn’t have been lost.


The 40 hectares or 800 kanals are meant for improvement and better facilities – but seems the leaders of the valley can not digest anything better for this purpose. Either they want repeats of the 1996 tragedy to happen often or are too scared to see something new done in name of a Hindu religious sentiment.


Even if one were to concede that these facilities can be provided by JKTDC instead of SASB – is the JKTDC going to build the shelters in thin air? They would still need to use the land – unless the promise of JKTDC is a mere eye-wash and a time-wasting argument. Then what is the problem letting SASB use the same land on temporary basis – for 2 months. SASB is formed of officials of the state government machinery and most of the members of last board were state-subjects as well. The land was not be transferred permanently nor was any board member being endowed land for personal use – nor were they going to pocket the land and smuggle the land out of the valley.


Then what is the problem with the land transfer?


For a moment – lets assume the transfer is needless – and that the cabinet ministers of PDP were stupid in approving the transfer admitting the need after spending 3 years investigating the need, and that the same facilities do exist or can be provided by JKTDC…In short – the demand is needless.


Fine – if it’s needless, so be it. But what is the problem?


And there is a fine and serious difference I want you to identify. There are scores of needless things governments do in India or in whole of Indian-subcontinent for that matter. Scrores of needless committees, boards, organizations and cabinet posts exist… and that’s true of J&K too. But have you ever heard of people protesting so zealously about something needless – as did the muslims in valley in June. So the argument that’s its needless isn’t what incensed that crowd either.

The leaders of Kashmir have been for years pretending that they yearn for the return of Kashmiri Pandits. Mufti enacted a lot of drama around it in his tenure as well. How do they expect a Kashmiri Pandit to trust them – when they can not digest a temporary use of land for a reason so emotionally close to every pandit’s heart.


Can I trust Mufti or Omar to support me in the valley when I return to my roots – when they are aiming their guns at me for demanding a mere 40 hectares of land?



Media role


Each channel today – is busy analyzing how communal the people of Jammu are… No wonder they have to be communal – after all they are asking for land for a Hindu shrine. Anything Hindu = communal. Does not matter that the Sikhs, Muslims, Gujjars and bakrwals of the Jammu region are agitating alongside with the Hindus in Jammu.


But not one of these media honcho’s dared call – a Geelani or a Yasin Malik or a Umar Farooq or a Mehbooba Mufti communal – when they blatantly and brazenly turned down land use for a Hindu shrine. But Pranoy’s and Barkha’s IQ is lower than that of a Panchvi-pass – so its tough to expect them to understand this. The valley protested against the land allotment on religious basis in June – they objected to the land transfer for Amarnath Shrine board – something they never did for any earlier land transfers done to other agencies earlier for building railways, power projects or telecom towers in the state. But if a Muslim protests – its not communal. Its Kashmiri Nationalism and that’s all kosher…


Whether its CNN-IBN or Times Now or NDTV, they have been gulping the dramatically scripted sound bytes of the separatist leaders – without even caring to do an iota of homework…


Not one of these journo’s have so far asked any of Omar/Mufti/ Mehbooba/Mirwaiz/ Yasin Malik or Shabir Shah’s – all of whom are their revered guests all the time…

  • What the problem is?

  • How can they claim that the Kashmiri Muslim demand is secular and Jammu is communal – when they started objecting along communal lines first?

  • How can they claim self-certification of Kashmir as being secular by nature – when they forced the half a million Pandit out of the valley 18 years ago?

  • How are the claims of “we welcome the yatris” justified when there is an open fatwa in the valley – against which none of them has raised a voice – demanding all non-Kashmiri’s leave the valley. How is it that none of these leaders have so far said a word of condemnation against the fatwa issued on exiled Pandits by Ahsan Dar?

  • How can they shamelessly claim that yatra has never been touched - forgetting the massacre of yatris in 2000?
  • How are the claims of “not a single yatri has been touched?” even after attacks on yatris at Banihall, Kangan, Phalagam and Gulmarg amongst other places in the valley?


But then – all this is too much to expect from our pseudo-secular and partisan media…The media which was busy awarding Oscar of parliament speeches to Omar Abdullah for his speech in the confidence vote - and didn't care to call his bluff - and question his audacity in misleading the parliament.




12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Excellent post. I think you have laid out the facts well. You will need to exhibit super-human qualities to keep emotion out of this debate and let the facts speak for themselves. Due to our personal circumstances, 'we' tend to get emotional and fall prey to the political machinations of the very people you are challenging. Of course, the ‘secular’ media will continue to report what increases their ‘TRP’ rating, with no regard to their responsibilities as member of fourth estate.

thirdwave said...

I will not jump into an elaborate rhetoric, but here are my simple questions for your introspection:

Who asked you to leave Kashmir? Ask yourself that question

Are your facts correct when you state that Kashmir has issued a fatwa on non-muslims? Is kashmir not home to millions of sikhs besides pundits who decided to stay loyal to the land instead of being rats deserting a sinking ship. I am a Muslim and the threat of death was real for me too.

when you talk about the massacre you talk about one isolated incident.. muslims have been victims of much bigger massacres at hands of security forces, and I am speaking from first hand experience... should i run away as well? all these years it has been kashmiri muslims extending their hospitality to yatris, which they continue to do even now at the height of this crisis
Dude dont let your insecurities get to you...

!!! said...

Thirdwave...

The question should have been "Who forced you to leave Kashmir?"

Read - the previous posts and you will get the answer in detail at many many places....

For a quick primer...read...

http://soulinexile.blogspot.com/2007/01/kp-exodus-day-19th-january-1990.html

http://soulinexile.blogspot.com/2006/08/nizam-e-mustafa.html

http://soulinexile.blogspot.com/2006/08/maha-fraud-called-kashmiriyat.html

Anonymous said...

GIBBERISH!!!

Anonymous said...

Muslims have been helping keeping the Amarnath yatra alive because it brings them money. Otherwise we have seen what they have done to Hindu temples all over Kashmir. Some have been encroached upon and some have been destroyed completely.

Why is it we are afraid to call spade a spade. We all know the truth of Kashmiri secularism. Force 4 lakh hindus forced to leave kashmir and then say " we are secular" Force Hindu labourers to flee from kashmir and then say " We are secular". Few hindus who are in kashmir are like frightened pigeons. They will do whatever the muslims tell them - Do they have an option? But Kashmiri muslim will still parrot the word of "secularism".

They should look within themselves and be honest to themselves about what they are. They should try to match their actions with words. Not go on loudspeakers and threaten the non-muslims.

Why are they making a big issue of this land. They don't feel any shame while buying land in the rest of India but are against any Indian buying land in Kashmir. Hypocrisy is what they have been doing all long.

They expect to be antinationals in India and at the same time receive the 5 star treatment. Deception can only work for so long and only take you so far.

They give comfort to themselves that it was jagmohan who forced Hindus to leave. It suits them as they can still say " we are secular". Truth is they are no different than wahabi islamists. Check the history of kashmir and you will have all answers.

!!! said...

Dear Third-wave

Firstly - if you are resident in Kashmir, you should be well aware of the fatwa on non-Kashmiri's. Do I really need you to show you proof...? You must be kidding...
Fatwa of your dear Ahsan Dar on Pandits against return to Kashmir - you and your leaders would neither acknowledge it nor condemn it... just like the ignorance you folks showed to the open letters of threat published in local Urdu press against Pandits in 1990...

Finally, your mention of millions of Sikhs and pandits still living in Kashmir valley is laughable at best... Do you know how much a million is?
As per 2001 census, the total Sikh population of J&K state as a whole was only 207,154... of which a overwhelming 90-95% are in Jammu region... You can do the maths... unless you dont know Maths at all, because you just drove out the poor pandit maths teacher.

And - finally, do read about the handful of Pandits live in the valley toward - as scared pigeons...

http://infochangeindia.org/Agenda/On-the-move/Return-from-exile.html

Anonymous said...

Third wave. Yes some muslims died in kashmir. But what were you thinking. You will attack army with bomb blasts and RPG's and AK47's and they will sit silent. I don't think you are so foolish that you actually think that India paramilitary forces will takey bullets when you fire at them. They fired back and in the process some muslims got killed.

Indian paramilitary forces are not like minority hindus, who you were able to ethnically cleanse with deceit and terror. Do you remember muslims saying- we are with you but what can we do if the militants are from other neighborhood. And then using loud speakers to threaten the hindu minority.

If muslims died fighting Indian paramilitary forces - so what, that is expected. Any loss of life is regretted. But you chose this path and you paid the price.

Hindus of kashmir had to suffer for no fault of theirs. Why did you not do mass agitations when hindus were targetted? You were complicit in lending your tacit approval to what was going on. The wahhanbi islam and fanatic islam will destroy you. And you are going deeper and deeper into this abyss.

Anonymous said...

Jammunities - Bravo for standing up against Islamic fascism. Kashmiri muslims spread lies and rumors - that is what they have been doing for last 50 years particularly for last 18 years. Rumors like - No yatri was hurt in Amarnath( total lie), Rumors like -Hindus left because of Jagmohan ( total lie). Rumors like -Kashmiri muslims are not communal ( total lie they are communal to the core). Thanks again for standing upto isalamic fascism. No more concession for Kashmiri Muslims. Kashmir muslims have long made merry on free money provided by India at the expense of starving other regions of J&K like Jammu and Laddakh. They should pay for their evil deeds.

On another note, Lone and Geelani article are not accessible on this blog, This may be hacking

Meenakshi said...

The country respects the people of Jammu. We are indebted to you. Great show of courage and strength by the people of Jammu.

Youth - the Future of India said...

I just came to this blog from google and I just fail to understand why names of religions are to be taken anywhere in India .. I am a Muslim and a proud INDIAN though not from J & K ... I have never researched enough about the J&K region but I always feel very bad for the state .. If anybody is doing wrong please condemn it but please do not take names of religions .. everybody has to understand one thing that we are all Indians

People from all religions have suffered due to these religious problems.. I feel sorry for the Kashmiri pandits.. similarly I feel sorry for the people of Kandhamal, Orissa .. feel sorry for the victims of Gujarar riots or anybody else .. for me any Indian who has to suffer is condemnable .. it pains me when an INDIAN suffers from any state, caste or religion of India

And I am also pissed off with these political parties and religious people playing with people's sentiments everywhere .. And these bastards are playing politics in the name of all religions .. I hate any such political party which is creating blocks for Indian democracy

I have a dream to become the PM of India .. and if I succeed in reaching that position someday then I will make sure that nobody is treated unfairly in India ... I will make sure that every religion is treated equally in every state of India .. I will make India realize that we are all INDIANS at first and then only comes our religions, castes, states, creeds etc. .. And I will also make sure that everybody works for the country's developement and to make it the world superpower instead of worrying about any differences


And regarding the terrorists, I will bomb each and every terrorist out of India .. if needed I will attack Pakistan and end all thier foul play ... the bastards would be heavily dealt with

I can feel the pain of the author and any such person who has had to face the problems but my only request is that please do not fight amongst yourselves on the basis of religion .. remember that we are all Indians and then only our religions come ... I want to see a very stable India as the world's undisputed superpower in my lifetime and guys we have to all work for it

Peace and God Bless

Anonymous said...

i hate this temple - mosque buissness......... i hate more who talk about it....u can't quit smiking if u keep on thinking about cigerettes!!!

Anonymous said...

i hate this temple - mosque business......... i hate more who talk about it....u can't quit smoking if u keep on thinking about cigerettes!!! Those who can write good should write on something constructive....pose more porblems only if u hav solutions..........live and let live........stop beleiving in god, allah, bhagwan,whatever........just be a man/wowan/enunch.......whatever...