The wonder that is Kashmir : where Minorities become Majorities and Majorities become Minorities and then nonexistent

Posted on August 17, 2008. Filed under: Hindu, India, Kashmir, Muslims, Politics, religion, terrorism |

While speaking in the Rajaya Sabha on 17-08-2006 Dr. Farooq Abdullah had questioned the Government of India on the steps being taken by it after Pakistan refused to grant permission to Kashmiri Pandits for visiting Hindu Shrines or places of religious importance in Muzaffarabad. Dr. Man Mohan Singh appreciated Farooq Abdullah for raising the question and said that he would surely raise this question with Pakistan. Carvan e Aman Bus had first left for Muzaffarabad on 7 April 2005. Lt. General ( Retd ) S. K. Sinha had said in an an interview that the Bus will also carry the historical and spiritual message of Sheikh Noor-ud-Din Noorani and Lala Ded. After 60 years of accession of Jammu and Kashmir with India, spiritual message of Noor-ud-Din and Lala are still awaiting to be transported from one part of Kashmir to another, and the Kashmiri Pundits are still “Migrants” from Kashmir Valley.

For Marxists, or Thaparite Hindu historians, all terrorism in Kashmir or by Muslims stem from exploitation and economic hardship or enforced displacement. Why the Pandits did not become terrorists? Many lost everything they had and finally settled down in Jammu and not all were top bureaucrats or rich businessmen or professionals as they have been represented by historians, politicians and the media. They did not become militants because they were Indians, and they were not brought up in a religion whose fundamental principle is relentless “physical” warfare against “unbelievers” until they “submit”.

The regime dependent and supported political analysts, historians as well as sections of the media treated Kashmir as an “Islamic state” and therefore its “Islamic features” to be “protected” at all costs. This recognition and acceptance of “Islam” as the sole claimant of “Kashmir” immensely played into the hands of Islamic revivalists based in religious centres in India and Pakistan who had been carefully nurtured under the culture of “tolerance of minorities”. Islams agenda in Kashmir succeeded in confusing the common Kashmiri Muslim and their religious sentiments which contain early exposure and brainwashing with not only an inveterate hatred of all non-Muslims, but sanctions and exhortations of violence against them in opportune moments as natural and “Allah” ordered (thereby any personal human regret or conscience can be bypassed) together with a blatant falsification of Kashmir’s pre-Islamic past [in this their greatest allies were of course the Thaparite school of Indian history, who did everything possible to suppress the real role and mechanism of spreading of Islam, and paint pre-Islamic or non-Islamic cultures of India in the worst possible comparison with Islam]. These were exploited to create doubts about completeness of 1947 Accession to India.

The economic backwardness was explained to the poor and unemployed as a result of  being a Muslim living under Hindu majority “rule”. Hindu Thaparite historians were most prominent in describing militancy as being out of neglect, unemployment and communal hatred by Hindus. Kashmiri Pundits were blamed for their part in this mistreatment of “Islam” and just as in Bangladesh the “missing Hindu populations in the census” are tried sometimes indirectly to be ascribed to the “economic opportunism of Hindus and their hatred of Muslims and hence their stealthy migration” the Pundits’ mass migrations of flight to safety was represented as an opportunistic Hindu-communal betrayal. All of this had to be done because the Nehruvian strand of Congress politics [Nehru himself had declared that he felt himself culturally a Muslim] possibly also under Western pressure to encourage Islam as immunization against communism, took it upon itself to not only preserve Islam but also to try and help it grow in India. In the “Muslim majority” state of Kashmir, the “heart bleeding for the repressed minorities” political elite of NewDelhi could not recognize the Kashmiri Hindu Pundits or Buddhists as “minorities” – since doing so would have been an embarrassing contradiction and not suitable for their strategy of using Islam as a double whammy – something to tame Hindu pan-India cultural consolidation which would have gone out of the control of the small UP based coterie of Congress as well as an immunization against Left or progressive forces [Islam has proved to be the best antidote against modernization in social and human rights].

Our eminent historians of the Thaparite school of Indian history, never discuss the circumstances that made the campaign posters threatening Kashmiri Pundits a common sight in 1989-1990 in Kashmir Valley, showing the extent to which the anti-Hindu Islamic forces had been allowed to strengthen. The Kashmiri Pundits and many Muslims felt that the militants could actually carry out their threats where as they were not sure about the capacity or political will of the “democratic government” to guarantee security to life and property of those who did not support merger with Pakistan.

The Kashmiri Pundits were Hindu and neither believed in the two nation theory nor did they believe that there could be any thing like an independent nation of Jammu and Kashmir. Hence majority of Kashmiri Pundits left Kashmir Valley along with some Muslims who supported accession to India. Some from the Muslim ruling elite thought that Kashmir should have special constitutional status within India but did not accept the merger with Pakistan as well as Kashmir becoming an independent country. Hence many Muslims and political leaders of the National Conference and Congress also migrated from Kashmir Valley along with the Kashmir Pundits as they also felt unsafe in the Valley. Some Kashmiri Muslims had stayed continuously outside Kashmir Valley upto 1994 and thereafter they gradually returned to the Valley. Dr. Farooq Abdullah had remained in exile for many years under special personal security.

Dr.Farooq Abdullah always described himself as first an Indian and strongly advocated “greater autonomy ” and should be admired for his political courage to oppose militancy and pro-Pakistan groups at the cost of political losses to his party. His political dilemma comes out though on many occasions, such as his allegation that Mr. Jagmohan, a BJP MP, encouraged the Pundits to leave the Valley when he became governor of the state for the second time. Some separatist leaders from Kashmir Valley, some Kashmiri pro India leaders of local political parties and even sections of the Indian media have claimed that Jagmohan wanted Kashmiri Pundits to be out of the way to enable him to deal with militants. To understand this we have to realize that the Kashmiri Pundits never had the tradition of aggressive militant action to defend their rights as the Punjabi Hindus or Sikhs. This is the reason that Punjabi Hindus and Sikhs who have had to survive the worst forms of Islamic violence for at least fourteen hundred years (Sikhs from the Mughal period) did not give up in the face of separatist terrorism in Punjab. About 40000 Sikhs still manage to stay in the Valley.

The Kashmiri Pundits now in exile outside of the Valley, have been excluded from the negotiations on Kashmir. The wishes of the non-Muslim majority areas of Jammu and Kashmir should be taken into account. If this is not done, sooner or later India will have to wake up to a very stark choice – Kashmiri unification has to be then done militarily which may also necessitate the dismemberment of Pakistan, and a thorough wiping off of religious fundamentalist leadership and their cultural propagation systems on the subcontinent.

The Hurriyat wants trade across LOC, and a shaking New Delhi bleats weakly like a lamb that they also agree – only that Pakistan does not respond. This is as I had predicted in a previous post, that NewDelhi will appear increasingly the cornered fool dancing to pro-Pakistani Islamic revivalists’ demands. Indian non-Muslims, especially in the Kashmir and Jammu region should gear themselves for increased Islam sponsored violence and should begin thinking longer term about a permanent solution to the Kashmir problem that safeguards non-Muslim existence and interests indpendent of whatever the Islamophile bosses at NewDelhi promise or say. The ordinary Kashmiri Muslim is an Indian, by origin, by history, by cultural roots. Islamic violence only retreats before an overwhelming force that leaves no doubt about its will and capability to exterminate Islamic “leadership” [the “eradication of Islam” in Spain towards the end of the middle ages for example]- this is the lesson of history, for survival at any cost in order to preserve chances of future multiplication is a fundamental aspect of all Islamic strategy. The American attempt in the middle east is running uphill simply because they do not recognize that the main source of inspiration of Islamic violence utilized by Islamic religious leadership is a primitive greed for biological resources driven by extreme insecurities and intellectual incapability to deal with the complexities of modernizing societies. These religious “scholars” are the main source of selective and opportune interpretations from the core Islamic texts with a shrewd understanding of political manipulations that can satisfy their personal ambitions of power and influence in a world system that goes increasingly beyond their intellectual capabilities. Islamic religious mechanisms and institutions that pretend to preach “peace” for the benefit and division of non-Muslim opinions should have been the first target of the Western colonizing forces in the expansionist phase of European colonialism, and the world would have been spared a lot of pain if instead of concentrating their efforts on destroying the “pagans” they had targeted erasing these Islamic institutions from the face of the earth. Unfortunately we all have to bear the fruits of the West’s long love affair with Islam. But Indians may yet have a way out, as they have always had in the past in overcoming forces that had seemed invincible at first.

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