Hovering Shadows of Sectarianism on Jammu Province
Jammu province is an important region among the three important administrative provinces of Jammu and Kashmir State. Kishtwar, Doda, Ramban, Udhampur, Jammu, Reasi, Kathua, Samba, Rajouri and Poonch are the respective districts of Jammu province which according to 2011 census has 5350811 as the total population, where into 65% Hindu, 30% Muslim and 5% Sikh are its inhabitants. As far as the freedom movement of Jammu & Kashmir is concerned, albeit there are less Pro-Freedom people in Jammu province, but it is not obscured & hidden that the Muslims of Jammu who are living in Chenab zone or Pir Panjal Range or for that matter in district Jammu, are completely supporting the Freedom Movement of Jammu & Kashmir. This is an acrid verity and there’s no way out for the truth seekers except to accept it. Since 1947 to the contemporaneous times, the Muslims of Jammu Province have always presented their evidence of fidelity towards the freedom movement of Jammu & Kashmir and also in present times, when after July 8th, a volcano erupted in Kashmir which still ignites its magma into every sphere of valley, Jammu Province didn’t remain behind, instead all the Muslims majority zones, especially Chenab zone & Pir Panjal Range which have many times mustered their voice aloud with respect to protests & demonstrations and still it is continuum at the present situation.
If a people’s movement will arise in a region of any country, then the rulers of that country should chew their nails after waking up from rabbit sleeping. As far as the ongoing struggle of Kashmir is concerned, it is vividly evident that the people of entire Kashmir aren’t accepting the Indian Occupation. All the time Kashmiris have unequivocally shown it through their everlasting sacrifices and the contemporary continuum movement in Kashmir is an unexpired example of it. However, it has been documented that around 80 innocent young boys, children and elderly have been killed as they fell prey to the bullets of Indian forces. More than 500 people are those who have lost their eyesight either partially or completely by falling prey to the pellet gun, and this time the number of injured persons has crossed over 10 thousand mark. Covering more than two months, many barbaric & heart wrenching events have been occurred in the present uprising. The custodial killing of the College Lecturer Shabir Ahmad Mango or the drowning of many young boys after jumping into the river Jehlum when they were chased by Indian Forces, many events like aforementioned have been occurred in the past two months which leave every heart doleful. Presently more than 2 thousand youths have been arrested and every night, raids are being conducted in order to pick up youths. The struggle has gained momentum through these events and the ongoing resistance movement has turned out be a people’s movement. Albeit Chief Minister of State while speaking in a program organized in Jammu has termed this movement as a mobbish & mischievous which according to her are just 5% (handful) elements fortifying violence. It’s totally wrong statement and it can be challenged through different questions. If this statement has some amount of verity, then the chief minister along with other alliance holders should immediately quit from the Government on the basis of not being able to control these “5% elements” for past two months. These statements only replicates the incapability of Mehbooba and her other alliance holders and, she doesn’t have the moral permissibility & legacy of holding the power of Government. With repudiation, various analysts through their comments & write-ups have termed this statement of state’s first woman CM as ludicrous. In the present masses movement, despite confining Hurriyat Leaders in their houses and jails, the government seems to be in a complete state of helplessness in order to stop the protests, gatherings and rallies. People are arranging & managing the protests & gatherings by themselves after religiously following the continuum protest calendar being supervised by Syed Ali Shah Geelani. From doctors to professors, from Government employees to businessmen, and from elders to young ones, people have become part of this movement completely & irrevocably. This time North Kashmir, East Kashmir and South Kashmir are seen together, united, and the great examples of brotherhood among them are being replicated. Different Islamic Organizations have turn united irrespective of mutual disparities and until now many joint programs under the banner of “Attainment of Freedom” have been organized and its process is continuous. The mass involvement of people in gatherings, rallies and protests gives a feeling that people have firmly intended to lead it to a logical ending. Despite the suspension of mobile & internet alike vital necessities, this movement gives a vivid picture of a well-furnished and organized movement. Government of India is also very conscious & well aware of this unending movement and until now, discussions on part of situations in Kashmir valley were conducted two times in the Indian Parliament. Apart from this, Home Minister of India have visited Kashmir two times during the people’s movement and recently an All Party Delegation (APD) was sent to Kashmir comprising of two political parties which was headed by the Home Minister of India who arrived here with “Jamhooriyat, Isnaaniyat and Kashmiriyat” as his trumpet. But on the same day, protests in Kashmir got the kind of intensity that in just one day; more than 600 protestors got injured during clashes with Indian forces and all newspapers declared that day as a bloody day of the ongoing freedom struggle. Perhaps it was an unambiguous answer from the side of Kashmiris that they’re not ready to talk to the Parliamentary Delegation. Although during a press conference Home Minister of India claimed to have discussions with different delegations. But everyone saw that All Party Delegation (APD) also couldn’t produce a mechanism for returning normalcy and after two days they went back to Delhi. Hurriyat Leaders bluntly refused to meet the Parliamentary delegation and Syed Ali Shah Geelani in his inveterate stand termed these discussions as futile endeavors, and closed the doors of his office cum residential house as a repudiation of meeting with Parliamentary Delegation.
Will this ongoing movement be triumph in terms of getting good results or it will once again turn out to be an unaccomplished as 2008 & 2010 uprising witnesses. Nevertheless it will be decided by time, but according to analysts, this time it appears more different from the previous intifada. The mass involvement of people in protests & demonstrations vividly shows that people want to solve Kashmir Issue as per their aspirations. This time Pakistan is also taking measures gravely over Kashmir Issue. Recently Pakistan sent letters to the heads of many countries in which they have been asked for their assistance with respect to the solution of Kashmir Issue. On Governmental levels Pakistan termed Hizb Commander Burhan Wani as “Hero of The Nation”. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharief devoted his 70th Independence Day to the Freedom Struggle of Kashmir and while expressing utmost sympathy for Kashmiris, President Mamnoon Hussain also resolute to make their struggle a success. From the other side, Prime Minister Narendra Modi while taking austere stand on Kashmir Issue on the Independence Day talked about clutching away Azad Kashmir from Pakistan. United Nations & America in their consecutive statements have also urged India & Pakistan to solve Kashmir Issue through dialogues. Thus, after a long term Kashmir Issue is once again receiving importance in Indian & Pakistani politics.
These were some facts about the ongoing Freedom Movement in Kashmir which were important to mention in order to understand the essence of this article. But my main motive behind writing this article is to make readers aware about the prevailing situation in Jammu Province that began due to the emergence of people’s movement in Kashmir. As I’ve written at the beginning that in Jammu Province, the number of Pro-Freedom people is very less and majority of people are non-Muslims who have embraced their future with India. The unparalleled proportion of 70% non-Muslims and 30% Muslims could create sectarian violence in Jammu Province. Prior to 70 years at the time of India’s Independence, history has witnessed the worst ever violence in which as per various informational sources, 5 lakh Muslims were chopped (like vegetables) who were boarded in trucks in the garb of sending them Pakistan. This is the event which after listening shakes off the soul of all painstaking humanists. All the districts of Jammu have mixed population comprising of Hindu, Muslim & Sikh communities. Chenab zone and Pir Panjal Range are believed to be more volatile among all the districts of Jammu Province. Whenever in Kashmir there is any political progress or loss of human lives through Indian forces, it comes here with a great disturbance which ultimately serves as a threat to peace & security. In both the volatile areas, Kishtwar area is believed to be more volatile where many Hindu-Muslim disputes have been occurred in erstwhile & recent past, whereinto both the communities have suffered great loss of human lives. So, the Muslims of Jammu Province have become a meritless nullified part of the Freedom Movement of Jammu & Kashmir. We get to look its evidence by going in depth in the past records. From the fields of armed resistance to the political struggle, on every level Muslims of Jammu Province have always played a vital role towards attaining freedom. And they are still on forefront in the ongoing freedom movement. Presently, strikes & protests are being observed in Poonch, Rajouri, Ramban, Doda & Kishtwar in order to express solidarity with Kashmiris. This time BJP has acquired 25 Assembly seats in Jammu Province. Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) has succeeded in drawing its influence in the Chenab zone and Pir Panjal Range as well. As per this party, Muslims have extreme negative perceptions & ideologies, and the mentioned party occupies an austere stand on the Kashmir Issue. The associated leaders of BJP are routinely giving provocative statements regarding Kashmir Issue. A few weeks ago Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitely in a provocative speech in Jammu said that, protestors in Kashmir are attackers, they must be dealt sternly. Earlier a provocative statement of a controversial BJP leader Lal Singh (who joined BJP after renouncing the Congress Party membership) has also come forth in which he had angrily intimidated a Muslim Delegation of repeating the event of 1947.
It is very important to take steps in advance so as to annihilate the communalism prevailing in Jammu Province. The demand of prudence is to solve the issues before they get worse. Otherwise! Killings will continue, Oppression will continue and, the edifices of humanity will get down.
Disclaimer: Views expressed are exclusively personal and do not reflect the stand or editorial policy of Oracle Opinions.