Kashmir – Pakistan’s Moral Panic

Kashmir – Pakistan’s Moral Panic

Adfar Shah & Dr Bulbul Dhar Pakistan’s self acclaimed political or strategic morality on Kashmir, its jugular vein rhetoric has only slightly shifted to diplomatic hypocrisy, reflected in the recent cancellation of NSA level talks and the continuing small wars at the border. Boycotting cricket-a favourite of both the Nations speaks volumes about their supposed commitment to ‘resolving’ the deadlock. The moral pretentiousness on Kashmir, shaped by low politics is part of their very core and is manifest in the critical internal issues, especially in their frontiers like FATA, Baluchistan, amongst others. The insincerity of Pakistan’s rhetoric is becoming very apparent with the monster of terrorism raising its ugly head time and again, along with other concerns like radicalism and economic issues. Double speak and hypocrisy with lollypop politics based on religion and violence to gain more emotional support from their set camps in Kashmir and at home seems to be the name of the game for Pakistan. Declaring February 5 as Kashmir day and announcing a holiday or inviting top Kashmiri separatists is an instance of symbolism. The gap between rhetoric and practice of resolving the long pending issues is clear for all to see. The modus operandi is the ‘Politics of Rehnuma’. The logic being – anyone, even a Pakistani marrying a Kashmiri becomes a ‘Kashmiri Rehnuma’ overnight and starts representing the Kashmiri along with the atmosphere of conflict, especially on Pakistani electronic media. There is no question that the masses hardly know these leader(s) or indeed identify with the ideology this newly manufactured leadership claim to espouse and represent. It is a very subtle and insidious system-supportive propaganda that is being methodically operationalized ostensibly without overt coercion”, by means of what can be called a propaganda model of Leadership. Present today, as one of the biggest curse’s for the Kashmiri masses is manufactured leadership in Kashmir and projected as the torch bearers of Kashmiri People! These self proclaimed leaders speak on the behalf of the Kashmiri people with no connect what so ever with what the people actually want or subscribe to. The central question here is – who really in Pakistan feels for Kashmir- its people or its politicians? And who...

Open letter: How can you justify killing humans in order to protect cows?

Open letter: How can you justify killing humans in order to protect cows?

(This is the full text of the Open Letter, an edited version of which was first published by Express Tribune) Dear Mrs. Vaidya, I saw your post on ‘Indian Liberal Intellectual’, through a dear friend of mine who is an ardent advocate of Hindutva. I must confess, before I begin to put forward my points- cum- reply on your ‘Indian Liberal Intellectual’ post, let me confess, I do agree with you partially considering the facts, but I do disagree with your intentions and also of those whom you support. And this disagreement in terms of intentions itself draws me to write this reply to your post. To being with you dedicate your post to ‘Indian Liberal Intellectual’, and blatantly describe them to be “neither Indian, nor Liberal, nor Intellectual!” Well Mrs. Vaidya, can you please define “Indian”, “ Liberal” and “Intellectual” so that we get some clarity on the issue and can examine your allegation of somebody not being ‘Indian’ ‘Liberal’ and ‘Intellectual’ can be verified. Or is it the case, that you subscribe to our Governments attitude where everybody in dissent is advised to go to Pakistan, or is it the case that your post is a corollary to the theorem put forward by new Government, if people are not going to Pakistan, just call them ‘not Indians’ or ‘pseudo-Indians.’ Mrs. Vaidya probably you have devised a new law to decide about the citizenship of this country. What makes a man pseudo Liberal Mrs. Shefali, condemning Dadri Lynching, if that is what makes a man pseudo liberal, then perhaps Mr. Advani and now the Prime Minister Mr. Modi is also pseudo liberal, as atleast for the sake of Bihar elections he condemned the Dadri Lynching. Yes you are right, when you point out that the prize money too should be returned by those who returned their awards, and I in no way want to justify or take side as to why the said prize money was not returned but there could be more than one reason for not doing so, and the very idea of returning the awards is to register protest, the sanctity of award is in award itself and not in...

Waqf Sponsored and Goodwill Education in Kashmir

Waqf Sponsored and Goodwill Education in Kashmir

Apart from numerous religious educational institutes like Dar-ul-Ulooms, Darsgahs, Maktabs,etc, spread across the length and breadth of valley, there are certain unconventional sources of education in valley like Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Wakf Board run educational/professional institutions, orphanage schools and various other trust run educational institutions, Police public schools, Army’s goodwill education, Shia community run religious and other educational institutions, etc,. Army run or army administered education (schools) in the valley is commonly known as Goodwill education and these institutions are known as AGPS or army Goodwill public schools. These institutions are an alternative form/source of education besides the common modes of government run or private run education. Such alternatives like wakf education or Goodwill education have certainly been able to change the discourse by enabling access to the marginalized to a good education that too either free or at a minimal/affordable cost. Having studied ‘Muslim Endowments and Society in Kashmir’ thoroughly, I have surveyed Muslim auqaf and waqf sponsored educational institutions in the valley. As a researcher my observations in various religious or English medium educational institutions like darsgahs, darul-ul-Ulooms,waqf schools,Wakf Board aided Islamic university of science and technology, Bibi Halima college of Nursing, etc, I have had close interactions with the staff and students which unfolded interesting facts and stories. I learnt how such massive and potential institutions despite huge issues and challenges contribute a lot to the ailing society but continue to remain uncelebrated and invisible. The Student enrolment in Wakf run (13) chain of Schools in Kashmir is above three thousand (Boys 1627 & Girls 1605) and at the moment thousands of students from socio-economically backward sections of the society benefit from these institutions. Despite a good education, a nominal amount is charged from students as tuition fee and all the educational requirements are made available by the Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Wakf Board (JKMWB) which certainly proves as an alternate source of education in its own limited capacity. It is my objective observation that, despite a variety of schools in Kashmir, the educational situation in the valley is grim in terms of quality, content and attendance. Some major reasons for poor standard of education in the state according to researchers...

Over AAWI Elections- A Dialogue with Mahesh Vaswani

Over AAWI Elections- A Dialogue with Mahesh Vaswani

  Advocate Mahesh Vaswani is a activist lawyer campaigning for AUDIO – VIDEO recordings of all Judicial  proceedings in Courts. Acting Chief Justice Hemant Gokhale and Chief Justice Swatanter Kumar of Bombay High Court had during their tenure felicitated and honored Mahesh with Certificates for legal aid projects involving sitting judges of Bombay High Court and rural poor and the slum dwellers of Mumbai. Mahesh practices and specialises in Criminal law in Sessions and High Court at Mumbai and also appear in Supreme Court as well. Mahesh is currently contesting, for the elections at AAWI (Advocates Association for Western India).    The Analyst World (TAW) : What is your primary intention behind contesting the AAWI Elections? Would you reason out the same. Mahesh Vaswani (MV) : My primary intention behind contesting the AAWI is to improve the working conditions of lawyers and help lawyers benefit from developing law. TAW : Can you Please elaborate about the steps which you would take to improve the working conditions of Lawyers, citing some specific issues and proposed solutions for a clearer understanding. MW : Lawyers at trial Courts would be better functioning if mic is provided to the presiding officers during trials. Also lawyers have to work in most inhuman and harsh conditions in crowded courts during summer. In districts Vasai, Panvel and Alibaug and rural Maharashtra, lights go off in middle of proceedings. But proceedings go on… imagine how. Also there is rampant pilfering and theft of court records. These must be made more secure. And of course conference areas with clients for all lawyers in all courts. Also hygienic toilets for women at least needed. So also for male lawyers and public in all courts. Even Mumbai HC toilets are unhygienic. TAW : What in your opinion are the prime problems faced by Lawyers in the present Legal System? How would you make any difference as compared to other contestants? MW :  The primary problems of lawyers today is they do not have full access to latest developing law in Supreme Court or High Courts, and also they have severe office space issues. Often there is issue of decorum, dignity and administrative problems faced by lawyers and...

Beef Politics in Jammu and Kashmir-Yet another setback to Peace

Beef Politics in Jammu and Kashmir-Yet another setback to Peace

While the beef ban has been stayed by Honorable Supreme Court in Jammu and Kashmir for a period of two months, beef politics continues to spread hatred and politicians are still hell bent on the ruckus over the same. Yesterday on October 8, an independent legislator was thrashed openly by BJP that too in the State Assembly over the issue of beef party that he had arranged in the M.L.A Hostel a day before as a mark of protest against the interference in the religious matters of the Muslims. Such an open attack speaks volumes about the kind of politics of polarization which J&K elections had very well reflected. Beef Rumour and Dadri Tragedy Quite shockingly after Dadri tragedy a new term ‘Beef Rumour’ has emerged in media and given much hype by masses as if some lethal or nuclear weapon was possessed by murdered Ikhlaq’s family in Dadri of Uttar Pradesh. The poor gets beaten to death and his son seriously injured for the mob believed they ate beef. Ironically the Police even takes a sample of the meat left in the refrigerator to prove if it was really beef. What if it was and the family consumed beef, do they deserve to be beaten to death like this? Is the mob order the new justice system in India? One wonders over beef politics now in our country and silence of the government and even elected politicians who later call it a mere accident. Where are we heading to and what is our future given such a magnititude of polarization, hate crimes and appalling state of affairs. Hate crimes against minorities are continuously rising in India. State’s unneeded intervention and interference even in people’s lives or food habits now has started all the way from Maharashtra beef ban, followed by few more states and finally reached to the sensitive and peace deficit state of Jammu and Kashmir, doing no good but destroying the mutual harmony, community ethos and peace. Kashmir’s Perpetual Fragile Peace Peace and calm does not last long in Kashmir now. Whenever Kashmir seems to be limping back to normalcy, a spur evolves all of a sudden to keep the lid...

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