Where Modi blundered while addressing public rally in Srinagar on 7th November, 2015

The people of this country were eagerly waiting for the message of the Indian Prime Minister when he addressed a public rally on 7th November, 2015 this year from Srinagar, Kashmir. Not only the people of India but people of Pakistan and POK in particular were betting on Modi’s message to strengthen Indo-Pak ties and continuation of talks as were agreed in the Shimla Agreement in 1972 signed by Mrs. Indira Gandhi and Jenab Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. Clause 6 of the Agreement has laid down that the Prime Ministers of the two countries shall meet frequently to seek final resolution of the situation.

English: Narendra Modi, Chief Minister of Guja...

English: Narendra Modi, Chief Minister of Gujarat, India, speaks during the welcome lunch at the World Economic Forum’s India Economic Summit 2008 in New Delhi (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Prime Minister Modi used his rhetoric voice trying to raise emotional surcharge but without touching the substance or the existing realities. His announcement at the end of speech that he had brought Rs.80,000 crores for J&K was received by artificial cheers, naturally so, because half of the audience were hired or the serving employees in different departments. This was so that the people wanted to attend Prime Minister’s rally dared not come out of their houses because entire Valley was curfew bound. The trains from Banihal to Qazigund, Qazigund to Baramullah were stemmed off for two days. There was no surface transport available for a common man. All offices and educational institutions were shut. I remember that a call for Hartal in Srinagar was even by angry Kashmiri leaders during the visit of the then Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh. I and many other invitees drove from the Airport to the Guest House to attend the meeting chaired by the Prime Minister. The government was instructed from Delhi that the Prime Minister would not allow a state curfew to help the boycott. It was a different story which was carried by every media person and newspaper that entire Valley was shut because of the state action. It was state sponsored bandh in other words.

The Prime Minister failed to congratulate the Indian Army which has been playing a most constructive role, manning the borders, making sacrifices by laying down their lives for the sake of the nation. The Prime Minister forgot to say a word about the Indian Army which is taking care of the snow covered hills and Siachin glacier. The other blunder Prime Minister committed was his failure to congratulate the people of J&K for showing resistance to the militants and the terrorists. These were the people of J&K who resisted Pakistani aggression in 1947 and defeated terrorism through their constant and consistent resistance for nearly 25 years.

The Prime Minister’s another blunder was to ignore Jammu Pradesh and the problems the people of Jammu Pradesh have been facing right since 1947. He failed to mention the plight of the Jammu Migrants while he did mention the Kashmiri Migrants in his Ramban speech, though casually. The Jammu Migrants have been suffering on the roads, not given any relief by the Central or the State government since 2000. The High Court of J&K and Supreme Court of India ordered J&K government and Govt. of India to pay relief to Jammu Migrants at par with Kashmiri Migrants. It never happened. The Prime Minister promised these migrants during his election campaign in Jammu Pradesh that he shall redress their problems if they voted for him. They voted and the Prime Minister did not care even to mention their plight.

Besides there are nearly 15 lac POK and Pak refugees rotting, sulking and starving in different parts of Jammu Pradesh. The Pakistani refugees nearly one lac have not been given any fundamental rights in J&K because they are not citizens of J&K though born in J&K since 1947. The POK refugees were promised comprehensive settlement. 68 years are over. Third generation is continuing in the same pain and agony. Prime Minister could not find even a word to express his sympathy with them. Entire Jammu and Kathua are facing wrath of Pakistani shelling from across international border with Pakistan. Thousands of people have become shelterless. The children have no schools, the farmers cannot go their fields. They have no shelter to keep their families. Prime Minister could not remember them as well. Prime Minister promised about Rs.5,000 crores for the roads, good paved roads for the Indian and foreign tourists going to the Valley. Prime Minister could not remember or was not informed that there are unknown destinations, most beautiful, attractive where the people do not have shoes to wear or food to eat. They live on ‘sattoos’ (barley) and these places are known to everybody—Marwah, Dachhan, Warwan. There are no roads to reach there. The human beings live a life of cattle. And these places are in Jammu Pradesh in Kishtwar district. The Prime Minister should have been informed that there is a sensitive area in Jammu Pradesh, Poonch which is nearly 250 kms. (west) from Jammu. It takes more than 10 hours to reach there. When Prime Minister declares Udhampur-Banihal road leading to the Valley, why and how he forgot the plight of people of Rajouri and Poonch. They also needed road. They are also citizens of India and facing continues shelling and threats from across the LoC. Was it not blunder on the part of Prime Minister to ignore Poonch-Rajouri.

The most political issue confronting the people of J&K is delimitation of the Assembly constituencies. Kashmir Valley has 46 seats whereas Jammu Pradesh has only 37. The area of Jammu Pradesh is 28,000 sq. kms. as compared to the Valley which has its area of 13,000 sq. kms. The number of electorates in both the provinces is almost same. Delimitation was held throughout India after 2001 census. Why J&K was ignored? Is it not integral part of India? Why Prime Minister ignored this issue?

The Prime Minister yet committed another blunder that he failed to congratulate the people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh for their unique spirit to live in mutual co-existence. The people of J&K are wedded to the composite culture for thousands of years. The Prime Minister did not spare a word to congratulate the people. It is Jammu and Kashmir which is a Muslim majority state yet we have got great holy places like, Shri Amarnath Cave, Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine, Kheer Bhawani, Chhati Badshahi, Shankeracharya Temple, Hazratbal. The Prime Minister failed to appreciate the existing situation and the aspirations of the people of Jammu Pradesh, Kashmir Valley and Ladakh regions. Prime Minister should show his wisdom and courage by declaring let the people of Jammu Pradesh have their state, so Kashmir Valley and Ladakh.

Alas! The Prime Minister Modi dared not say ‘Jai Hind’ after his speech and that was an unfortunate message.