By Sajid Yousuf
20 Oct 2020
On August 4, a group of politicians from Jammu and Kashmir met in the most secured zone known as Gupkar, in Srinagar, and called for autonomy and special status of Jammu and Kashmir. They issued a joint statement to defend the Article 370 and 35-A. Since then, this statement is known as the Gupkar Declaration. After Former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti was released from the incarceration, Her Political antagonist who were archenemy for her before the Abrogation of Article 370 decided to meet and form an alliance of different Political Parties Including JKNC, JKPDP, JKPPC, CPI(M), J&K ANC, JKPM.
J&K Congress President however hippety-hop the meeting and said due to some health issues wasn’t able to attend the meeting but the support of Former Union Minister of Finance and Union Minister of Home Affairs of India and Congress Leader P. Chidambaram indicates that Congress also supports the Gupkar Declaration.
How Abrogation of Article 370 actually made them Unemployed?
On August 5, 2019 the decision taken by the Government of India to Abrogate Article 370 and 35A made many people jobless. Those who were running their franchise on the name of Autonomy, Self Rule, Referendum and Azadi were detained under PSA (Public Safety act) later on they were released one by one. There was nothing left in the Article 370, it was actually a political tool used by the politicians for their political gains because it was already eroded with 74 amendments before. Now the question is how Abrogation that led to the real integration made few families Jobless/ Unemployed.
After Abrogation took place in Jammu and Kashmir, The state turned into Union Territory (UT) which means all the powers and decisions of the Jammu and Kashmir will be taken directly from New Delhi. The difference between a state and a union territory, a state is a division under Indian constituency, which has a separate government. States are explained as the administrative unit that has its elected government, which has the right to frame its laws. It has its own Legislative Assembly and the Chief Minister, for administration. The Governor acts as the representative of the President, in states. Union Territories are ruled directly by the Central Government has a Lieutenant Governor as an administrator, who is the representative of the President of India and appointed by the Central government. In Union Territory Chief Minister becomes irrelevant because UT is governed by the Lieutenant Governor. Chief Minister can’t take any decision without the consent of Lieutenant Governor.
In the past during the tenure of JKNC, JKPDP and Congress, Grass root politics (Panchayat and Municipal Elections) were missing on the ground. The Local Body elections were not conducted vigorously but after the Abrogation of Article 370 , Central Government focused on the grass root democracy in which thousands from Jammu and Kashmir contested elections. Later on they were empowered by the centre. Panchs, Sarpanchs, BDC’s were given power more than a MLA, MP and funds were released for the developmental work. In the heart of the Jammu and Kashmir – Mayor in Srinagar was elected after more than a decade and was given portfolio of Minister of the state and Jammu also elected Mayor after proper voting by the counsel in Municipality.
As on today funds coming from the Centre towards development of the UT are channelized directly to the respective panchayats with the vision of grass root development. In contrast to this, earlier the Centre’s Funds were absorbed by the treasury of legislative assembly of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, Meaning the two families who hoarded public funds and enjoyed a lavish lifestyle at the cost of public dreams ONLY BECAUSE Article 370 gave them exemption from begin accountable for the funds.
Before 4 August 2019, all the local political parties were marauding each other but abrogation led to the integration of many parties together to safeguard their throne.
Role of Hurriyat becomes inappurtenant?
Hurriyat became inapropos after the abrogation of article 370 because the Centre didn’t leave any way ahead for them to run their department store on the name of Azadi anymore. Syed Ali Shah Geelani after holding the throne in Hurriyat Conference for many decades also resigned. Religious and Hurriyat Leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq chose laconism after the Abrogation of Article 370 other separatists were detained and arrested in terror funding and money laundering cases.
The inarticulateness and resignation cuspidate fingers on Hurriyat leadership, thousands laid down their lives for them but within a year people understood their worth and reality which made Hurriyat Leadership irrelevant in front of the people.
Is mainstream existing somewhere or they turned into Political-Separatists?
After Hurriyat got scattered in front of the people Regional Political parties choose the path of separatists to befool people, just like Hurriyat did, but they forget one thing that, they can fool people for sometime but not all the time. Mehbooba Mufti who is incumbent for the death of hundreds of Kashmiri during her tenure as Chief Minister in 2016 is now talking about the Human Rights, Omar Abdullah Once a Chief Minister who is also responsible for the death of many Kashmiris is trying to be Messiah of Kashmiris.
One should not forget that Former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti won the previous election by saying vote for PDP, we will not allow BJP to rule the people of Jammu and Kashmir later on she joined hands with the same BJP with whom she is angry these days.
It’s known to everyone whenever these parties ruled people of Jammu and Kashmir they didn’t leave any corner against the people be it Mehbooba Mufti, Farooq Abdullah or Omar Abdullah. People were killed, blinded, arrested, communication was gagged even SMS services were blocked; Media was stopped from doing their work.
On one side signatories of Gupkar Declaration now Jammu and Kashmir peoples Alliance are opposing each and every decision taken by the Centre but on other side they are holding positions in the Parliament. They didn’t give up their security cover, Pension, perks and privileges given by the same centre whom they are opposing today.
The Writer is a lawyer from Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, he can be contacted on [email protected]. Views are his own.