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One more minority killing in Kashmir exposes Hypocrisy

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Post by on Monday, June 7, 2021

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The gruesome murder of Rakesh Pandit sent shock waves throughout and there is a great anger among the people outside the valley regarding this episode


 

FRAGRANCE OF IDEAS

 

ASHWANI KUMAR CHRUNGOO

 

The mass killings in Kashmir valley started when Ashok Kumar Ganjoo was killed at Sathu Barbarshah on April 3, 1987 in broad daylight in the background of the February-1986 carnage of temples in the entire valley. The attack on temples was actually a rehearsal to gauge the impact of the attack on the psyche of the minority community in Kashmir. It was also aimed at, to read between the lines so far, as its reaction in the Hindu majority community living outside Kashmir valley was concerned. These killings were followed by the selective killings of the Pandits by the militants like Pawan Kumar followed by Swami K Nath, who were killed in 1988.

It was in the middle of 1989 that Mohd. Yusuf Halwai, a National Conference worker was brutally murdered at his home vicinity. But later, the killing of Adv. Tikalal Taploo, a senior KP leader and the then Senior Vice President of J&K BJP, outside his residence by militants on 13 September, 1989, ignited the actual fire of brutal regime in the Kashmir valley, thereby enforcing mass exodus on the Indegenous people of the valley, the Kashmiri Pandits in 1989-90. Hell was let loose with the 'abduction' of Rubaiya Syed, the daughter of Mufti Syed, the then Home Minister of India. The nation paid a very big price with the appointment of Mufti Syed as the Home Minister at the centre, by VP Singh, the then Prime Minister of India.

Devastation and death became a routine affair in Jammu-Kashmir and around 1 lakh people got killed in the Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory, including civilians, security forces, tourists & yatris, foreigners, militants of various hues and colour and also the 'disappearances'. Though it is a private figure, the government is of the view that half of this figure was consumed by the militancy related events over the last three decades in the JKUT, which is also very huge. It would be only a repetition to give the details of death, destruction, ethnic cleansing and mass exodus of the Pandits from Kashmir valley in these columns. But the fact of the matter remains that the mass exodus of the Indigenous people of the Kashmir valley, the Kashmiri Pandits, in 1989-90, is the biggest question confronting the Kashmir issue. We have been listening day in and day out that 'Kashmir is incomplete without Kashmiri Pandits' and the 'KPs would be resettled in Kashmir with honour, security and dignity'. Alas, all hypocrisy and brazen lies.....!

 

Ever since 2017, post Burhan episode, some semblance of sanity was witnessed in the Kashmir valley in various quarters. But this sanity was punctured by the following three developments. The separatist and militant organizations many a time issued threats in respect of any idea of resettlement of Kashmiri Pandits back in the valley. A number of political workers were killed in various incidents of terror in various parts of the valley. A number of members of the minority Hindu community were selectively murdered in different parts of the valley over the last more than one year, the latest being the Chairman of the Tral Municipal Council, Rakesh Pandit.

The gruesome murder of Rakesh Pandit sent shock waves throughout and there is a great anger among the people outside the valley regarding this episode. This ugly incident has raised some pertinent questions for everyone concerned. The foremost question is for the intellectuals, religious leaders, community representatives and the mainstream political leaders of the Kashmir valley. There is hardly any tangible condemnation of the minority killings by these sections of the prominent classes in the valley, neither was there any intent visible to protect the minority community by the majority community in Kashmir.

There is not even a single instance that could be quoted for the last 35 years where majority community in the valley came to the rescue of the Pandit minority community, unfortunately. Instead, they remained as silent spectators. We are reminded of the "Sholey" picture of the seventies of the last century in which Gabbar, the bandit Sardar and his men come at will, loot, kill and abduct the selected ones right before the whole village and there is absolutely no resistance from the society at all. The society seems to have surrendered before the extortionists, looters and killers. Almost similar or worse than that scenario has engulfed the entire society in the valley. Such an impression about any society is absolutely unfortunate and depressing. It transcends a message everywhere and worldwide about a society, its morals and ethics. This is the biggest cost that the majority community of Kashmir has been found to pay when the whole world (excepting Pakistan) is fighting terror and terrorism unitedly and with purpose under the UN guideline.

Many a time we witness a few sections of the majority community in Kashmir talking in terms of the return of the Kashmiri Pandits to the valley and they even talk of goodwill, accommodation, friendship and what not...! But the hypocrisy got exposed with the brutal killing of Rakesh Pandit, who trusted his friend than his security.  It needs to be added here as a matter of lesson that political activism and strategic relationship don't invite sentimental or emotional approach. One has to apply reason and be rationale in politics and public life. The emotional display failed, so failed the goodwill since the 'trap' was well set to finish one more Kashmiri Pandit active leader in Kashmir upon the altar of the so-called love, goodwill, trust, friendship and belief in a word of a friend. Success has many fathers while failure is always an orphan. Here, the lessons are stark and visible. Yes, there is no need to cover hypocrisy, it is already exposed and revealed.

 

This author would, however, make an appeal to the intellectuals, teachers, religious leaders, community representatives and the mainstream political leaders of the Kashmir valley to have an in depth study of the situation as an exercise of introspection, review and reform. There is yet time to make the next generation feel that things could be reversed to normalcy, sanity, simplicity, mutual love and affection and shun all varieties of favor with crime, hate, drugs, terrorism, stone-pelting and suicides. Every single section of the society has to answer its conscience, though there is an overwhelming failure in this regard over the last four decades.

I hope and pray for good sense to prevail upon since hypocrisy in the society needs an end, sure, sooner the better....!

(Senior BJP & KP Leader, Incharge: J&K BJP Political Feedback Deptt, Author & Columnist Feedback: ashwanikc2012@gmail.com)

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