Making Sense

Making Sense of What is Happening in Jammu and Kashmir

KS Correspondent

January 2011

NEW DELHI, Dec 26: Addressing the theme “Making sense of what is happening in Kashmir”, Panun Kashmir organized a seminar on 26 Dec, 2010, at India International Centre in New Delhi. The Seminar was attended by a cross section of intellectuals and office bearers of various organizations. In the chilling cold and dense fog the participants assembled at the venue and interacted in an intense and surcharged atmosphere. Chairman of Panun Kashmir Dr Ajay Chrungoo presided over the proceedings which were divided into two sessions. Dr Shakti Bhan Vice-Chairperson of Panun Kashmir made the welcome addressed and invited the participants to delve on the topic of the Seminar. She set the tone for the deliberation by expressing deep apprehensions about the functioning of the three interlocutors appointed by government of India and also the return plan for Kashmiri Hindus initiated by the State government.

Among the galaxy of prominent intellectuals and community leaders who participated in the Seminar were Jagmohan the former Cabinet Minister in Government of India and Governor of Jammu and Kashmir, Sh Bhim Singh the President of Panthers Party of Jammu and Kashmir, Sh Gautam Koul former Director General of ITBP, prolific writer and eminent scholar Sandhya Jain, well known defense analyst and columnist Sh Maroof Raza, Smt. Nancy Koul  Panun Kashmir leader and a political analyst, Captain S K Tikoo, leader of Awami League and an expert on Kashmir , Sh Lalit Ambardar a journalist etc. Sh Vijay Tikoo Vice- Chairman of Panun Kashmir conducted the proceedings.

Captain S K Tikoo spoke immediately after the inaugural speech by Dr Shakti Bhan and impressed upon everyone to take the developments taking place not only in Jammu and Kashmir but the entire country very seriously. “What is at stake is not only whether Jammu and Kashmir continues to be a part of India or not but also whether India will survive as a nation. He said the corruption scandals exploding on the face of the nation reveal only a tip of the iceberg of the crisis facing the nation. We are seeing all those persons who have a proclaimed position on damaging India gaining prominence in the affairs of the country. I have no hesitation to say that overwhelming majority of Kashmiri Muslims want to stay with India but Government of India recognizes and patronizes only those who want to Break away from India. Why is it so is a question we all have to ask ourselves and answer?”

Sh Lalit Ambardar , a prominent journalist made an impassioned appeal to everybody to mobilize national opinion by writing and responding to various issues confronting the Kashmiri Hindus as well as India. He asked everybody to understand the value of contesting wrong perspectives and fighting disinformation. He urged the Kashmiri Hindus not to get disheartened and fight with a unity of purpose.

Sh Gautam Kaul urged Panun Kashmir to have a thorough review of its political objectives and responses. He wanted Panun Kashmir leadership to relook on the territorial claim of its political demand and recast it to make it more pragmatic. He also talked about looking into the social and cultural challenges facing the Kashmiri Hindu community.

Sh Bhim Singh said there was a conspiracy to barter away national interests in Jammu and Kashmir and divide Jammu province to create a Greater Muslim Kashmir. He emphasized the need of Kashmiri Pandits and Dogras of Jammu to work together.

Sandhya Jain asked everybody not to be afraid of Jihad as much as they should be about the role of America and the west. She said that Jihad has no success story to claim for many centuries now. In fact the so called Muslim power has been losing at every front. Indian problem has been that it has not been able to understand American machinations and fight them in this region. She said a change in national strategic vision was an imperative necessity for which everybody has to work and urged Kashmiri Pandits to hold on and integrate their struggle with the efforts to change the national vision.

Sh Jagmohan said that there was a rot beset at the highest levels of the Nation state and it is because of this that we are seeing the problems of corruption and betrayal of the national interests. He opined that unless a transformation of the very national consciousness takes place the problems which the nation is experiencing from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and in Delhi cannot be solved and he urged Kashmiri Pandits to play a role in this endeavor.

Sh Maroof Raza made detailed analyses of the dithering of the Government of India on the crucial issues involving National security. He criticized the way Government of India was handling its affairs with Pakistan. However the comment which surprised everybody was when he said that it was not intellectually tenable to believe that India will collapse if Kashmir separates from it.

Dr Ajay Chrungoo in his concluding presidential remarks said, “We are witnessing a unique situation in the History of Nations were a Nation State is trying to negate the nation. Unless we realize it we will not be able to understand why it is only in India that all those who uphold the nation get abandoned by the State and all those who are waging war against the nation are prominently placed in the affairs of the nation. In Jammu and Kashmir we are witnessing the bizarre game of retreat of India crafted from the very core of the State. The return plan which is being thrusted on Kashmiri Hindus is in fact a message to Kashmiri Hindus to compromise with the separatists and facilitate a compromise which the Government of India is crafting in Jammu and Kashmir. Kashmiri Pandits have to deter the State from breaking the nation. That is the task in which we all have to involve ourselves in the coming time.”

Sh Kamal Wangnoo , Secretary Panun Kashmir concluded the proceeding by paying vote of thanks.