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OPINION

Talking Kashmir in the Assembly

Unless MLAs of all political parties don’t do that they have no right to talk about Kashmir
Er Rashid
Srinagar | Posted : Jan 13 2018 1:29AM | Updated: Jan 12 2018 11:32PM
Talking Kashmir in the Assembly
File Photo

Before Mehbooba Mufti could reply to discussion on Governor’s address in Assembly and highlight her achievements, Omer Abdullah announced boycotting her speech, with the argument that she didn’t herself respond to opposition’s hue and cry over civilian killings. Omer Abdullah is at liberty to prioritize the issues of his choice to propagate his political agenda, but questioning Mehbooba Mufti for not speaking even a word over civilian killings means nothing. May Omer Abdullah answer how would her words over killings have helped when Mehbooba herself talks about her helplessness and begged bureaucrats to perform over developmental and governance issues after receiving some bitter advice from Governor at Zorawar Stadium. With house losing fast its credibility, words do matter very little. The politics Omer Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti get indulged in, would have meant something in a normal state but a place where every incident has wide consequences even at international level, action matters more than words. One cannot even believe when Mehbooba Mufti chose Assembly to threaten pro-resistance leadership by saying that whatsoever you will get, would be within Indian constitution, thus sabotaging talk process further and complicating issues for Daneshwar Sharma. Her speech in the assembly was quite contrary to what was heard just two days before her assembly speech at Zorawar Auditorium by her special invitee Lord Megnard Desaie, during his first Mufti Mohammad Syed memorial Lecture. Lord Megnard’s lecture exposed hypocrisy of PDP. Even a layman could understand what Lord Megnard wanted to convey. By citing examples of Northern Island, Scotland and other conflict zones he was indirectly asking for plebiscite to resolve J&K dispute. His sermon was like a word to the wise but it seems that his host turned a deaf ear towards his meaningful and logical advice. What irritated Governor during his address in central hall of Assembly on second January, same words draw praises from him for Lord Megnard at Zorawar Auditorium. Even Dr. Nirmal Singh the Dy. Chief Minister was seen shaking his head in affirmative while Lord Megnard was pointing out how conflicts can be resolved through democratic referendums. However in Assembly Mehbooba Ji threatened every such voice which would dare to say something similar to Lord Megnard’s version. It is a tragedy that almost every mainstream politician has pleaded for a peaceful resolution to Kashmir dispute in accordance with wishes and aspirations of people outside Assembly, but in Assembly, where things matter and cameras are always on to monitor their every word, they speak what their masters in New Delhi want them to speak. Mehbooba Mufti and her proxies in Assembly leveled serious allegations against Huriyat leaders especially Geelani Sahab by calling them arrogant, rigid and non-serious. The allegations leveled by Mehbooba Mufti that resistance leaders including Geelani Sahab did not open even their doors to Indian parliamentarians, may carry some weight but may one ask Mehbooba Mufti if Mirwaiz, Yaseen Malik and even five militant commanders could achieve nothing  except becoming suspicious in the eyes of their own people for the reason that nothing came out of these high profile talks, why should Geelani Sahab or someone else invite criticism from those who sacrifice on the ground for the resolution of dispute. PDP leaders need to be reminded that Kashmiris are not on the streets because Huriyat or Geelani wants them to do so but for the reason that they have a genuine issue pending since seventy years. It is strange, Mehbooba Mufti accusing Huriyat leaders of being rigid on one side but claiming Assembly having huge mandate of people on the other side. Let Mehbooba Mufti and other MLAs, cutting across party lines, catch the bull by horns and persuade Delhi and Islamabad for the resolution that satisfies majority of the people of the state and if they are able to do so, how does it matter whether Huriyat agrees to it or not. If MLAs truly believe themselves to be public representative then they can take any bold step for resolution of dispute without even waiting or caring for Huriyat or somebody else subject to the condition that they are sincere in their approach and seek or reach a resolution that Kashmir dispute deserves. Unless MLAs of all political parties don’t do that, they have no right to talk about Kashmir issue or to criticize pro-resistance leadership.