Sanjay Tickoo from Srinagar

From Hindustan Times: “Violence not cast in stone

“Kashmiris feel deserted by their representatives, who disappear during disturbances, leaving them to the mercy of god or in the hands of those who have vested interests in prolonging conflicts. Recently, we also heard of certain leaders, pretending to be the representatives of the Union government, issuing pro-active statements, which have contributed to the crises. The imposition of curfews to tackle crises has failed, and youngsters brought up in these years of turmoil have become hostile to the system.

There are no officially recognised student elections in Kashmir and it is hard to blame students for the present conflict. They only reflect the despair, caused by the failure of a consensual discourse among their elders. The hopelessness and frequent human rights disasters cause some students to raise extremist slogans. Till date, schoolchildren are being deprived of their childhood.

The Union government has placed agents in every administrative structure. These people have muddied the waters. Our parties maintain lobbies at the Centre that work for narrow political gains. I propose the installation of a coalition government, tasked with producing a resolution on Kashmiri aspirations.

The Valley’s minorities can play a vital role in the dialogue process. As a non-migrant Kashmiri Pandit, who has lived in downtown Srinagar throughout the troubled times but is dejected by our malfunctioning government, I have two points to make: first, the minorities are safe and enjoy cordial relations with Kashmiri Muslims. The Amarnath Yatra is taking place smoothly and the rest of India need not worry about the yatris. Second is a request to the media to be fair-minded and compassionate while reporting on Kashmir. The Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti interacts with different shades of opinion. We try to keep alive a conversation for the re-emergence of a plural society. We want sanity to prevail in all of Kashmir.”

Sanjay Tickoo is President of the Srinagar-based Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti. The views expressed by the author are personal.


One comment

  1. I read a good deal of materials on the plights of the Kashmiri Brahmans (I hesitate to call all of them pandits, if the term denotes scholar) who, over two decades ago, under extraordinary circumstances, migrated to many parts of India in 1990s. News on their sufferings and deplorable conditions have dominated public domain. Campaigns through internet have generated awareness globally by a section of people for the victims. One question always was uppermost in my mind: why Brahmans only were targeted by the separatists and terrorists though the campaigners want us to believe that they were the harbinger of Indus valley civilization in Kashmir? If Hindus of all descriptions were the victims of attacks Kashmiri Brahmans (hereafter KB) suffered, the argument could be strong that the separatists and terrorists want a Kashmir free of Hindu elements per se. But all publicity and propaganda point to only KBs exodus. The whole issue looked pretty enigmatic.

    Now after some research I gather that the majority Muslims have been thoroughly exploited and maltreated by a tiny section who boast as Kashmiri Pandits. They succeeded in doing so because of their education, cunningness, proximity to rulers and exalted status they enjoyed for caste. They dominated the administration in all branches. They never ever thought of good neighborly behavior towards those who are inferior in stations of life. Their orthodoxy jaundiced their eyes towards all to hate and treat as inferior.

    This is truly the Brahminical instinct and mindset that everyone else is despicable. Shouldn’t the KBs deeply ponder and introspect why 700,000 souls, well settled for generations, have to leave their home and hearth in the most picturesque valley? Think before you blame someone else if you have any role inviting such a calamity upon yourself? Do they not know that by their narrow mindedness and shameful behavior, has turned every Hindu their enemy? Do the scholars among the KBs have courage and uprightness to admit it? A fanatical section of the migrants and their sympathizers have been crying hoarse for KPs and KPs only. How come Gujjars, Jats, Sikhs, Dogras, Buddhists or Scheduled castes are not amongst the migrants? If they are amongst them why do not the advocates speak about their plight also? Will they not do some soul searching before blaming others for their present plight? How do they justify a state for 700,000 Brahmans only? Isn’t it divisive tendency?

    The partition of Bengal in 1947 was precipitated by mindless exploitation by a section, called bhadralok euphemism for Brahman, Baidya and Kayasth, who accounted for just 6.5% of population. East Bengal (now Bangladesh) was a Muslim majority as early as 1881. They too like KBs were blind to everybody’s interests and exploited them ferociously, rendering them to subhuman level. The exploiters were in dire need of partition to save their skin and domination in every branch of administration in partitioned tiny West Bengal.

    Will this discordant view find space in your blog?

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