-Dr. Mohamamd Aleem
Kashmir is one of the beautiful parts of India and also very integral like an organ of our own body. And it is very nature of human life that if one part aches, the whole body feels it.
These days we have been getting constant news about fighting and killing on almost the daily basis. Not a single day goes without such killing. Sometimes, our young soldiers fall to the bullets and sometimes, it is the militants (mostly homegrown and disgruntled Kashmiri youth), and innocent civilians who bear the brunt. Sadly, in all cases, many precious lives get lost.
But the question arises here so naturally that when these killings will stop. What is the remedy of this long held political problem? When will the valley experience a normal life as it used to do before the 1990s when the militancy had started spreading its vicious tentacles?
I have many friends from the media and television industry from this beautiful state. Most of them I found as patriotic as any other Indian. They want to live peacefully with the rest of the nation as a true Indian. But they are also fearful about their own safety and they fear to opine their views fearlessly and boldly due to the stifling nature of the political voice there.
When the PDP and BJP government was formed three years back, it was said that this alliance is unholy and it will not last long. But it continued three long years rather smoothly, except a few incidents like infamous Kathua incident and killing of the senior journalist Shujat Bukhari, of late. In fact, these two major incidents helped in unhinging the solid base of the alliance.
Who forms government in the states and at the center doesn’t matter much, I think, because, most of the political parties have their own vested interests. They seem much inclined, most of the time, to cling to power and money rather than serving the country in true sense. If it was not so, BJP and PDP or Congress and Secular Janta Dal in Karnataka or JDU or BJP would not have formed the government together in their respective states. It means that these types of unholy marriages in politics will keep continuing until our political leaders and masters continue to live with their narrow political mindsets. Unfortunately, there is not a single political party in the country which can boast of practicing pure and sacred politics which love to adhere to the larger and sacred goals related to the interests of the nation. Even Shiv Sena can come on board if such an opportune time ever comes to form the government with the help of the most secular parties of India like the Congress and the Communist Party of India etc.
The question here comes in mind that these kinds of alliances will keep continuing and it will hardly impact the national polity in the long run. But what they do and what they achieve will surely impact hard. If the BJP has broken this alliance with the PDP only for political benefits, aiming mainly the gains and losses of the forthcoming Lok Sabha election in 2019 and the state elections like Rajasthan and Madhaya Pradesh, where it is due, then, this break-up will surely not be remembered as a sacrificial break, but an opportunistic one. But if there is an objective of striking hard to the militancy and Pakistan sponsored terrorism and bring peace and stability into Jammu & Kashmir, then, it will be considered a holy one. But there is always a doubt in one’s perception and execution of the plan if the political situation is so confusing and political water is so murky.
The situation in Kashmir is very alarming and it can instigate another war with the arch-enemy Pakistan if it snowballed into a major controversy. This time, it will be much catastrophic due to nuclear capabilities of these two neighbors. In that case, the most sufferers will be the local Kashmiri people and the general Indian citizen at large, what we are seeing in the countries like Syria and Libya or Yemen. Would we like to get our beloved country slipped in that kind of chaos, anarchy and instability? I have a firm belief that if the political leaders and rulers of these troubled countries had acted prudently, raising themselves above their own petty and narrow political gains, then the situation would not have worsened as bad as we see today.
I hope that in Kashmir, it will not be repeated like the same. Who forms the government or it is run by the army or central government, it doesn’t matter much. But the result surely matters.
Kashmir issue demands a non-partisan approach from the mainstream political parties like BJP and Congress. It should not be viewed with the angle of Hindu and Muslim conflict. It is purely a political issue and can only be resolved through negotiations with the concerned and related parties. Gun and bomb can’t solve it till eternity.
(Mohammad Aleem is a national award winning novelist, playwright, scriptwriter and journalist.)