Prof (Dr.) Nutan Kumar Resutra
I am a big fan of Abdullahs ! I am an admirer of Muftis. I have developed a great liking for Tarigamis, Sajjad Lones, Shabir Shahs; Madnis; Akhtars; Engineer Rashids and Mirs; but above all, I have become a religiously staunch devotee of the Laddakh people, be those from Kargil or Leh. For, all these above mentioned persons have one thing in common. And that is : the interest of their area and their people!
We find lot of hue and cry in print and electronic media regarding the so called Gupkar Declaration. All the learned readers know very well about it, so I will not waste their time and interest in explaining it. Personally, I do not think those leaders and parties who have signed this Declaration need to be criticised; instead they need to be appreciated for their bold step !
I know I am going to be under fire from my Jammu people for uttering these anti national sentiments. I welcome that. Now let us try to see and read in between the lines about this whole issue.
There is no denying the fact that Kashmir based politicians feel threatened and are scared to death because they think the superiority of Kashmiris is now finished as also their political career; a statement that may be just an exaggerated imagination or a supposed fall out of Jammu and Kashmir becoming a Union Territory.An all out war of words has been let loose to make every one believe that with this Constitutional change, Jammu is going to get everything. More so, Jammu is going to rule over them and – though not spoken openly- now we will always find a Hindu Chief Minister that too from Jammu! Now not mincing any words we can say that in order to save Kashmir and Kashmiri, we find this Gupkar Declaration.
And the most beautiful part of this Declaration is that it clearly reflects strong bond of unity existing among all the Kashmiri leaders; be they from the National Conference, their arch rival Congress, Peoples Democratic Party, individuals, or any other small political group: across the board they forcefully say hum saath saath hain and Jammu will not be allowed to be accepted as an identity.
But what about Jammu? We will talk about it a bit later, let us first have a look at the scenario that prevailed in Laddakh.
As I said earlier, I am a staunch worshipper of people of Laddakh. Not going too far back in time, their ‘Union is Strength’ was seen just when the elections to LAHDC were declared. Cutting across party lines and across the board, all persons from all areas of Laddakh firmly announced to boycott the polls en mass if their Constitutional safeguards were not ensured by the Government of India. And astonishingly, the lead was taken by the ruling Bhartiya Janata Party, supported by its sworn enemy the Indian National Congress ! For days, not even a single person filed nomination papers for the elections. This badly jolted the policy makers sitting in Delhi. Initially they rushed their two ambassadors, but in vain. Then the Union Minister Kiran Rijjuju was roped in to defuse crisis. With hectic parleys and interactions with representatives of Leh as well as Kargil, the Central Government had to dole out assurance of providing Constitutional safeguards to the newly carved out Union Territory of Laddakh. It was only after this that election process had to be rescheduled and was ultimately conducted in appropriate manner. And I salute those people for standing united !
Now let us take the issue of Bechara Jammu! We are deeply religious people, to say the least. We accept every thing treating it as the will of God Himself. We just do not bother to open our mouth what to talk of raising voice. We are very apt at the art of trying to surpass each other and leg pulling. Let some one from Jammu become prominent, we will find a dozen ready to cut him to pieces. We are ready to accept the downfall of one of our own even if at his cost some one from outside gets benefit. We will do any thing and everything for others, but we will never unite for our own people, our own land. It will not be inappropriate to say that we live in false Duggar pride; boasting, day dreaming ,imagining, hoping but never ever uniting for the cause of Jammu. We happily sing Us Dogreyaanakhney aa shanneykanney, but where is that glory, that shaan ? To single issue we find hundred voices, each in conflict with the other trying to score his own point. Unfortunately the purpose turns out to be not the welfare of people in general but the welfare of a few. And I am not going to name any person or political organisation since everyone knows everything.
Alas ! I have been hoping and hoping against hope for Jammu people to learn from Kashmiris, from Laddakhis to unite for the cause, for Jammu. Each new day brings new ray of hope with wishful thinking that one day we will also unite, we will also stand for a cause, for Jammu; we will also get our much deserving and much awaited dues: in short we will get real freedom. But that each day sets with the same old rhetoric from all those who matter. And I am reminded of the famous couplet from great Urdu Poet Mirza Ghalib : Yeh na thi hamari kismet ke…… !