Why the Gun and not civil disobedience?

“It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled “                                                    

For some time in some parts of the valley, especially South Kashmir, activists of LeT, Jaishe Muhammad and Hizbul Mujahideen are martyred in encounters with the army. Properties are destroyed. A new situation has arisen in which the youth, both males and females, of the adjoining localities come out in crowds and throw stones at the security forces. Some civilian lives have been lost. In Kakpora a girl and a boy were killed in these tragic events.HQ

Thousands of guns taken up by the Kashmiri youth could not change the situation in Kashmir. Security forces have seized about 95 thousand guns and huge quantities of ammunition from active or surrendered militants. It springs me surprise whether a few gunmen of LeT or JM coming from Pakistan or about a hundred odd HM gunmen can change the status of Kashmir. Some questions arise:

  1. Does the international community consider these few incidents as our struggle for freedom?
  2. Can we defeat the might of the Indian military by these stray incidents?
  3. Can we foster unity among the people in Kashmir by undertaking these few activities?
  4. Is the use of gun considered struggle for freedom or terrorism?
  5. Do those, especially the Hurriyat, who give outright support to the gun, think that they will realize the purpose of accession of Kashmir to Pakistan? Is it not their political compulsion or political business?
  6. Political organizations supporting the gun too had their armed outfits. If they earnestly thought that armed struggle would bring success to their mission why did they disband their armed outfits then?
  7. Is not political representation a symbol of dissension?

Do the people doing gun politics believe that gun is the only source of their liberation? Can Pakistan continue to support Kashmiri gun wielders in the light of international scenario?

Let us try to answer these questions: Nobody on international level is going to support the struggle waged in Kashmir either with or without the gun if it is for accession to Pakistan. During last 26 years not a single nation out of 200 of them supported us whether our struggle was a freedom struggle or terrorism?

No international organization stands by us, not even a single Muslim country? However, some human rights organizations did occasionally speak about us but at the same time they denounced violation of human rights by some of our organizations even if we were among the oppressed. All that they did was to advise India and Pakistan to resolve their dispute through peaceful dialogue.

Kashmir Diaspora in foreign countries especially from PoK could not make any effective impact on international organizations. About 15 lakh people from PoK and IoK are settled in England. PoK Diaspora has formed some organizations there. Not more than a hundred persons attend their gatherings. At times other than the President and the Secretary, there is some who attending the meeting. Their activities are limited to staging a demonstration in front of Indian Embassy in London. Some of them based in the US may make a stray demonstration in front of the UN. They are usually sponsored by the Pakistan Embassies. Remember world community rendered help to freedom struggle in Palestine, Vietnam and East Timor. Kashmir could not register international support. The reason is that their cause is not freedom but accession either to Pakistan or India.

Ordinary people in Kashmir should, by now, understand that they cannot throw out 12 lakh Indian troops from Kashmir. Their leaders and thinkers should have understood it much earlier but they refuse to do so. Ordinary people are becoming the victims of destruction. It is not going to work. If it did, Pakistan’s 6-7 lakh soldiers would have launched attack on Kashmir and thrown out Indian troops. Pro-Pakistanis consider Kashmir part of Pakistan. As such Pakistani army should snatch Kashmir from Indians if pro-Pakistanis want accession to Pakistan?

Division of the State placed Gilgit-Baltistan and Pok in the hands of Pakistan and Pakistan further divided the two parts namely PoK and GB. India retained Ladakh, Kashmir and Jammu. In 1962 China illegally occupied Aksaichin. The State was divided into four regions. Previously there was no regionalism though sometimes very feeble voices were raised in Ladakh and Jammu. After the armed struggle in Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh began to feel more insecure. Jammu began demanding separation from Kashmir and Ladakhis demanded union territory status. Pakistan created wedge between the Shias and Sunnis in Gilgit and Baltistan. Seeds of hatred were sown against Kashmir and Pok. Sentiments of nationalism were sacrificed at the altar of communalism and factionalism. Hurriyat supported this line of thinking with the result the State was distributed in three parts on our side of the LoC and in two parts on the other side. This indeed was the big conspiracy behind the launching of armed struggle in Kashmir. Conspiracy was given a go with the extirpation of the Pandits from the valley.

 

In 1970s Maqbul Bhat introduced armed struggle for freedom of Kashmir. People of Kashmir were under the spell of Sheikh Abdulla and they called Maqbul Bhat a “murderer and criminal”?. That was a time when freedom struggles in Algeria, Vietnam and African countries were advancing. But here in Kashmir, people gave no importance to the ideology of Independent for JK trough of armed struggle of Maqbul Bhat. Pakistan crushed National Liberation Front through the Ganga hijacking case. Pakistan never wanted struggle for independent Kashmir to succeed. They do not accept it even today ?

 

The world considers gun as the symbol of terrorism. How come that we become scapegoats of terrorism by handling a few guns.

 

My article titled “why not Civil Disobedience in place of Armed Struggle,” written in 1993 is included in my book The Unveiling of Truth. But some people were day dreaming that freedom is round the corner. I had then predicted the destruction that gun would bring in trail.

 

Hurryat does not do anything beyond issuing statements or publicizing their photos during participation in condolence meetings. They do support armed activities because if they don’t do that, “their politics will reach the dead end.” They also get the quota for engineering and medical seats in the name of orphans. Therefore we are right in concluding that their superficial activities bring them only material comfort? Propagating among youth to participate in armed conflict is meant only to further their political ends and status?

 

Some political parties are part of the Jihad Council of Muzaffarabad. It is not compatible with the thinking of a political thinker. Political organizations that have abandoned armed struggle or are not indulging in armed struggle but are represented in the Jihad Council? What does it mean? Maybe they are accomplices in the funding which Jihad Council receives from Pakistan?

 

Speeches delivered by political leaders on the occasion of burial of martyrs reflect that they have full faith on armed struggle. But when we cast a glance and their own character we find that they have kept their children and themselves away from the gun but have also managed to obtain medical, engineering and business opportunities for their wards and children? Their business runs in hundreds of millions. For the kids of poor laborers, artisans and wage earners they deliver sermons of fighting jihad and finding beautiful girls in paradise as promised? For their own sons they make the paradise in this world and help them find beautiful damsels here and not wait for the paradise?

 

Foreign pressure on Pakistan has increased to the extent that Pakistani defence minister categorically stated Pakistan is not in a position to help Kashmiri jihad’s. Only the other day, the Security Adviser of Pakistani Prime Minister former General Naser Junjua conveyed to the Indian NSA, Ajit Doval the information that ten Pakistani terrorists had entered Gujarat. Call it whatever we may, one thing is clear that Pakistan is no more able to lend support to armed and terrorist activities?

 

I appeal to all well-meaning persons including serious media persons to pay attention to my above mentioned article without prejudice and without anger. I appeal to them to pull this nation out of the clutches of gun. In the course of civil disobedience there is no rationale of keeping AFSPA in place. India will have to account for each killing happened in a civil disobedience movement? We have seen the happenings in JNU. The gun has taken our struggle as hostage? It is for the people to decide whether they pay heed to my article written in 1993 or whether after gaining experience of twenty six years of struggle they will shift to civil disobedience movement? But remember the civil disobedience movement has to be disciplined and organized and active in all the regions of the State. If you are going to thrown a stones during encounter on security forces and they open fire on stone-palters, leading to bloodshed, then those supporting violence will find a pretext to give calls for strikes. By doing so they will be able to get additional pecuniary benefits from their beneficiaries? But under the international law, Indian forces cannot be held responsible because you are standing with “Militants” at the time of encounter? It will be a situation of war? If your adversary rains bullets on you he has a justification in self defense during a encounter?

 

Government has kept a prize of 7 to 15 lakh rupees for informer giving information us about militant movement? We most of the Kashmir’s are known for corrupt morals? The story makes rounds that one who has informed the police about the movement of militants are the first person to be in the funeral procession of the militant? What is the outcome of a struggle which you are unable to win through gun?

 

I was returning from my visit to Europe. At Delhi I boarded the airplane for Srinagar. Some big officers were also seated in the plane. Just to engage them, I asked them that they would be regretting the death of their soldiers in fight. The senior officer replied that “not to speak of their soldiers they even regret the death of the enemy.” I asked why authorities don’t think of solving the issue through dialogue. The senior officer replied that “they had neither the shortage of men nor of material.” He said “they had been fighting for last seventy years and they were prepared to fight for another 140 years.” He said that “India had no international pressure nor was there a fight against us like the one in Afghanistan, Syria or Iraq. If we Indians donate one rupee per head per day for war expenses, we shall collect 1.20 thousand million rupees in one day.”

 

I do not mean to stop people from bringing out peaceful demonstrations. But do not make demonstrations at a place where two parties are engaged in a gun battle? I would like to make it clear that if there is stone pelting at the place of encounter, be that Jama Masjid, Nowhatta or Khanyar, neither the Indian government nor the State government and nor the international body will consider it civil disobedience It is so because two crore people of the State are sitting silently in their homes, work places or offices? Eighty lakh people should coolly consider whether by stone pelting in downtown Srinagar, or South Kashmir or Sopor, does it means India will quit a go away by considering it a freedom movement?

 

The truth is that those running this movement have not considered programme and plan of running the movement? They raise slogans which can take anybody nowhere? Of course those who give call for the slogans want to be projected at the centre of the movement. All they do is to engineer the killing of innocent youth. Call for strike effective only in areas where shopkeepers apprehend damage to their shops. Shopkeepers of Lal Chowk appear to the most affected victims. Government functionaries consider strike a holiday and enjoy it. India has no impact of these strikes. Economists say that Kashmir has suffered a loss of 13 lakh crore rupees, J&K is a consumer State and it had to bear the brunt?

Keeping in view the suffering that we have gone through during past two decades and half, we should something to protect our future generations. We should hold seminars very frequently and we should open debate on this issue in each household, each street and each locality. We need to ask questions from those who give call for strikes and hartals?

 

ع۔   ًسچ کہہ کےکسی دور میں پچھتائے نہیں ہم۔ کردار پہ اپنے کھبی شرمائے نہیں ہم ً

 

“ Sach kah ke kisi daur main pachhtae nahin ham

Kirdar peh apne kabhi sharmae nahin ham.”

 

THE KASHMIR MAGAZINE

 

Hashim Qureshi

Chairman JKDLP