Tuesday, June 2, 2020
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B L Saraf

At the end of the day what happened ought to have happened sometime back . Governor Satya Pal Malik has dissolved the Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly . The order to the effect came in the evening of 21st instant .This has come after Peoples Democratic Party and Peoples Conference staked separate claims to form a government in the state . Among other reasons , the Governor put forth “ impossibility of forming a stable government by coming together of political parties with opposing political ideologies , reports of extensive horse trading and fragile security scenario in Jammu Kashmir ” , to dissolve the Assembly .

Earlier in the day we witnessed a strange political drama unfolding in the Valley ,where Farooq Abdullah , Mehbooba and the Congress tried to come together, supposedly , to defend Article 35 A and 370 . This was nothing but a ruse because Central government has indicated that it wasn’t for the abrogation of these Constitutional provisions , public posturing notwithstanding . Their repeated request to SC for the deferment of the case reveals the realty .

Complexities being the hall mark , nothing seems unusual in Kashmir . Everyone here has been fed with the distorted sense of reality . Some live in preferred illusions , some find it easy to conjure dreams in the opposite . So, one has to grant it to the Governor Malik that on 15th Nov he couldn’t visualize what may happen just a week ahead , when he categorically ruled out dissolution of the J&K Assembly anytime soon . In a print media interview he said “ House will remain in suspended animation . Governor rule will end on December 19 ; thereafter President’s rule will come in force .” He said , to keep House in animated suspension is a sort of political process where MLAs get funds and spend in constituencies . “ Why should we kill this political process ,” Governor stressed the point .

The dissolution of the Assembly is , indeed , a welcome step , though some of the reasons given by the Governor beg explanation . We can’t be sure whether “coming together of political parties with opposing ideologies “ or “ fragile security scenario “ could be valid reasons to disband the Assembly . After all it was in the begging of the dissolved Assembly that we saw , in coming together of BJP and PDP ( North Pole meeting South Pole ) , hard’ nationalism’ co-habitating with the “soft separatism “ to form the government . The “ fragile security scenario “ remains a constant factor whether it is Governor Raj or a popular rule .

We are in disturbing times . When our energy should be utilized to make life easy for a common man , bring a semblance of peace and ensure safety to the citizen we are in for combinations and permutations , just to grab the seat.

Now that the State Assembly has been dissolved it is desirable to have elections soon . No doubt , Governor’s rule is constitutionally permissible but it does not have a democratic flavour . It is a constitutional remedy to be applied in special circumstances , taken as a temporary diversion of the democratic stream . The democratic flavour is a pleasant blend of constitutionalism and the real politics . In J&K Context , the political component , often , outweighs the constitutional remedy . What compounds the situation ,here , is that the Governor’s rule is generally read synonymous with the Central governance . J &K is one state , in the Union , which can ill afford a Governor Raj .

True , every political party is driven by a desire to assume political / executive power . But in J&K , where numerous issues confront the state – often cross cutting one another , the desire to have the seat of power must always be tampered with the a recognition of the realities obtaining on ground . Whatever happens in Kashmir reverberates with high decibel noise , around the world . No political party could be faulted to nurture such an aspiration . But BJP , being a ruling party at the centre , has to understand it in a rather wider perspective .

Whoever rules Delhi must keep it in mind that he is entering Kashmir with an indistinguishable handicap - with one hand tied . In view of the peculiar geopolitical considerations , every political party has a role to see that situation doesn’t get destabilized in the state , and that the stream of democracy flows freely . Now that state will be going to the polls the interregnum should be used by the political parties to come out of the ill conceived notions , invest in de-radicalizing the state’s society , avoid polemical rhetoric and reflect calmly on the evens likely to unfold in times ahead . Kashmir society is fast degenerating into the civil war situation .

It will be desirable for the BJP mangers to understand that you cannot build a narrative on “ Capturing Kashmir “ . The party is well within its rights to have a foothold in the Valley and make efforts to expand the base . But the progress that seems to have been made by the party in the Valley is artificial , held together by the executive power the party has in New Delhi . As of now , what BJP thinks in Kashmir may not match with the reality . The case in point is the fate the Janata Party met with in 1977 when it lost power in Delhi . BJP’s Ladakh citadel has crumbled , showing the direction wind has started to blow .

Governor said in the interview that the successful and peaceful municipal polls have lifted the mood of the people that is turning situation towards normalcy . His focus is on “ addressing militancy that exists in the mind .” Let us pray that same mood prevails when people in Kashmir are to elect the MLAs , and their minds are detoxified of the militancy .

Latest developments should not distract GOI from the bigger issue . That peace in Kashmir remains elusive . It must be brought in and settled permanently . For that whosoever needs to be talked to must be engaged with . If Central Government could have talks with Taliban under Moscow Format in association with Russia , USA , Iran , Pakistan and others to settle things in Afghanistan , it shouldn’t feel shy in engaging with the separatist to settle things in Kashmir . After all they are our very ’ own ‘ , unlike the Taliban .

(The author is a Former Principal District & Sessions Judge. Feedback- [email protected] )

(Disclaimer: The views, observations and opinions expressed in above write up of Scoop News are strictly author's own. Scoop News does not take any onus or liability for the veracity, accuracy, validity, completeness, suitability of any of information in the above given write up. The information, facts or figures appearing in the write up in no way manifest the position, standpoint or stance of Scoop News and the Scoop News does not assume any encumbrance or answerability of the same. All disputes are subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of competent Courts and Forums in Jammu City Only)

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