Kashmir Truth Be Told Blog
Yus neereth gassan, pheereth cha yevaano: morda che gassan zinde (Kashmiri saying)

12/26/08

A beautiful theory slain by an ugly fact

The recently concluded elections does not change a thing. Only India, the so-called "democracy" can claim the distinction of imprisoning a whole nation and then to add salt to injury, claim that "free and fair" elections were held. As if the people had a choice. Kashmir is a large army barrack. There are more than 1.5 million Indian army occupation forces here! for what? because most Kashmiris seek Independence by peaceful means? There are no more than 800 armed militants in Kashmir. Far less than the number of underground gangs in any other Indian state. So why have this outrageous presence of occupation forces here?

To illustrate my point, here is what the Indian colonial master of the "Kashmir" police had to say, "The number of militants operating in the state has fallen below 1,000 for the first time. It is 808, including 577 locals and 231 foreign militants..." (Source: The Telegraph)

The Indians are just fooling themselves. Their media is giddy about the current turnout in rural Kashmir as if that is the end-all for the freedom movement. As if they are suffering from amnesia and cannot remember that just six months ago Kashmiris were out on the streets unanimously voicing their demand for freedom from India.

As if the 40 unarmed protestors who were killed will ever be forgotten by the Kashmiris. What would have had a shred of legitimacy to the outcome of these elections is if there were no Indian forces to coerce people into voting. Their mere presence makes a mockery of any democratic system.

Blackmailing Kashmiris into participating in farcical elections is not going to fool anyone. We have witnessed the dilapidated condition of our civic amenities and one can only draw comparisons with what is happening in Gaza. The Israelis keep holding the Gazans hostage by blocking the Gazan's only road to the outside world, thus preventing any basic necessities such as food, medicine and fuel from entering Gaza. Similarly, the pro-India parties blackmailed rural residents into voting by threatening that the development of their villages is on the line if they didnt vote. For rural Kashmiris, it was a choice between getting basic necessities such as proper drains, water connections, and roads so he can get his produce to the markets. Does that mean he has any affection for the occupation forces or India? Indian editorial journalists can keep dreaming.

13 comments:

  1. Any democratic process or elections need to be done in proper security. It is quite unfortunate that the Kashmir valley is so boiling with tensions that there has to be 1.5 million soldiers to supervise these elections, but more security will only enhance the sanctity of the democratic process.

    Of course, there could be electoral abuses such as rigging. But these need to be monitored by independent observers. International observers from various countries step in to inspect and judge the fairness of national elections . India should invite such observers even for provincial elections, because this will only add to the prestige of the process.

    In democracy, there is no distinction between day-to-day issues like roti-kapda-makaan and more subtle issues like azaadi. All have to be achieved through the same type of politics - and every person should participate in them to make his/her voice felt !

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  2. For India to state that it's the worlds' largest democracy is a sham. If India does not respect the right of self determination and self governance of Kashmiri's, then all these claims ring hollow. How can India man a half a million strong army and then say that the elections were fair???

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  3. i think its time to remove all the ' hate ' imbibed in the letter . lets remember Mao Zedong's famous quote . ' we all are lacking in maturity to solve our current problems ..lets leave it to future generations , and carry on WITH OUR LIVES ......

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  4. right of self determination has already been asked by some eastern states in India . soon Tamilnadu ( for the Tamil, Srilanka problem ) and Maharashtra ( for unchecked migration from North ) may ask for independence .
    should India heed to all these calls ? there is a limit to absurdity .

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  5. nice blog
    ur doin a gud work
    please visit mi blog
    www.timezofkashmir.blogspot.com

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  6. I do not know what choice Kashmiris really have.

    The conditions of the natives in Azad kashmir is far worse than the average Kashmiri in Indian kashmir. The Punjabis are a clever lot and they have ruled with an iron fist and really reduced the kashmiri to a minority- forced to carry Id cards and all.

    pakistan is far worse choice than india. Azadi may be the best but most of your intellegensia is sold out to the pakistanis so they will always linger on.

    lost cause maybe. best interest may be to carry on with the one who is most progressive and in this case likely to be india by a wide margin.

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  7. Koshur

    I have been following up ur blog for some time now, and it is drifting from sensible to consipiracy theorist(my view, m sure you have yours).
    808 against 1 million is ur question...well the basic premise of insurgency is that it needs little resources to support, and huge resources to oppose....The current wave of insurgency rite from 1989 onwards was supported by pakistan citing the "thousand cuts for bleeding india to eternity" policty....that is why these million troops are required, i m sure if you go through the army gazette(available on the indian army site), there are most of these army people on the LoC and along the international border, and not in the main valley. (If you recall it took over 500 men to flush out 10 terrorists in mumbai last month) Yes Srinagar is a fortress, and so is most of the other towns in the valley....the last i was in srinagar, there were police and army ppl every 50 mtrs, and a army vehicle every 1 km or so, I was initially not allowed to get into the old srinagar area, telling me that it was too dangerous for an outsider, but i did go in, and met up with friends....
    There was a letter from a reader of greaterkashmir, saying "do we as kashmiris know what we want" , please read that, it raises a pertinent question, and so does an editorial about why are there no representation in the IAS from the kashmiris. That should give you an idea of why kashmiri beuarocracy is managed by non kashmiris- may be since tere are hardly any senior level people who get into IAS/IPS and the likes.
    OK, the elections as per you were farced, so why did the APHC say that it was a mistake on their part to underscore the mood of the people, if the army forced people to vote(??) why did none of the foreign TV channels report the same, when they are too quick off the blocks reporting every small move in india and the valley, why did the pakistani newspapers ask their leaders to introspect and not blame the indian machinery to force people, why did with more force in the last elections, did the polling percentage go high...
    You have validly pointed out that we should vote for the people who would stand for us, very true, but then why did your fellow countrymen(??) elect mr. Baig again, who signed the amarnath land transfer, why did the NC win all 8 seats in the srinagar city, why did PDP win these many seats when they were the government when this entire land row erupted?? many questions which do not have answers, and top of the list if why can PDP and NC together not form the government in srinagar, and ask for independence, is it because if they do, they would not be able to shout for soft independence and autonomy, because their political market would close down...because they havenot done anything at all all these years....
    you talk about the indian state depriving you of the basic amenities- the roads, education and water and sewerage, i am sure you know the way indian state works...the state planning department asks the government for funds, the government in delhi reviews the plans and approves funds, the MP and MLA could then use these funds to get development work done in their areas, and now here are some data points (http://planningcommission.nic.in/popup/jk.htm), this is what the central government approved for J&K, and then what happens to the funds is anyone's guess....these are ur people, u elected them - MP and MLA, the engineers and village employees are ur people, the government said we will give 1000 rupees to every girl child, the government gives funds, and the patwari and the BDO of the village are supposed to give the funds to the required people, and they do release funds to the fictitious needy people.....the real poor people do not get anything....the roads repair tenders get floated by the respective engineer, indian government policy says that the works under 5 crore value should go to local contractors(refer PWD works manual ), these tenders are floated and awarded to local contractors, who do nothing but get the completion certificate from the engineers and MLA's, paisa kha liya, sadak bani nahi.....now the moot point is that these patwaris, engineers, contractors, MLA, MP are all your people!!! your kashmiri brethren, who have become rich on the cost of development....please refer to some of the cases(http://jkvigilance.nic.in/VFIR%20Cases/FIR-Cases-Main-Page.htm#List%20C%20: ) they are almost all kashmiri people, and these are only the tip of the iceberg...people who did get caught, there is an army of people siphoning off money meant for you and ur development into their accounts...i agree indian state is not free from corruption, we even in the capital of country see random corruption cases....the only issue is that it is slightly higher(significantly higher) in kashmir.... that is why 60 years into independence you do not have roads, drinking water and amenities in kashmir, and if we feel that azadi is going to change the people from making dirty money, you are worng, in fact there are people who have made money out of the azadi movement itself, who siphoned off money(channeled in from pakistan) for the so called azadi movement and for the mujahids, to make their own bunglaws in sringara and gulmarg....Yaar, aap kis azadi ki baat karte ho....ek aam aadmi ki jindagi mein kya farak pada , kya development hogi, soch ke dekho... ye sab aap ke aur hamare log hain, jo khoon choos rahe hain, why not bash them than the indian state......go through the mandatory affidavits that these MLA and MP have to fill in befor ethey file a nomination for the election, and see for youself the way there "known" asstes have grown.....Koshur, I respect that you are feeling let down with the way things are, but it is upto you to change these things......
    I m not shying away from the fact that it was the duty of the indian state to make sure that these funds reached the intended people....if that is a failure of the indian state, then each of us needs to introspect why things became so sad....not just at ur end, but at my end too.....
    Would love to know ur view on this line of thought

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  8. @erebus and @Ray
    thankyou for the detailed writeup. I will post my thoughts very soon.

    Best regards

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  9. Hi

    Chanced across your blog recently. As a patriotic Indian, while I strongly disgaree with many of the things that you say, I should congratulate you on the way you have maintained this blog - from what I have seen, you freely encourage opposing arguments/criticisms and are very civil to your opponents. It is nice to see someone who keeps his faith in putting across one viewpoint in a non-violent manner in the midst of all this mindless violence.

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  10. @sai
    Thanks. I try to do my best to include all criticism. But some on both sides of the argument are too extreme to be included on my blog.

    Thanks for the comment

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  11. The basis of Pakistan was using - blackmail. the basis of Kashmir was - stealing. Any arguments after that has no basis.

    Kashmir was historically always Hindu. If you chose historical precedence, then you don't pick dates.

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  12. helo
    1> there is difference between other states and kashmir.
    2> kashmir is a UN recognized disputed state n UN has passed 18 resolutions signed by india that give kashmiris the right to self determination.
    3>kashmir was hindu majority but they converted it doe not matter what it was some 200 years back what matters is what it was at the time of partition n now. both of the times a magnanimous muslims majority.

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