National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah, with his comment that ‘killings will continue till there is justice’, has justified the cold-blooded executions of innocent people like Kashmiri Pandits and migrant labourers. It is a clear statement that targeting non-combatants is a legitimate tactic for the cause, whatever that is. This reveals that he has not an iota of human empathy left in him – the taste of power has corrupted him absolutely. Plus, he does not even have the brains left to conceal his sickened state of mind.
Along with other politicians who have feathered their nests in the conditions provided by J&K’s ‘special status’, he can no longer cope with being rendered irrelevant in the changing circumstances in what is now a Union Territory. In fact, it is by playing both sides of the game that the former state was rendered the hotbed of terrorism, as part of which the most gruesome purge was carried out of minority Hindus. And that is what incomplete democracy will always result in. Unless there are genuine rights granted to all sections of society, democracy cannot grow strong. Special privileges, concessions, compromises of the kind that the Indian Constitution is replete with result in distortions that cripple the functioning of government and society.
It is no wonder that those who have emerged from these distortions and flourished have no compunction in resorting to the most cruel acts inflicted on fellow citizens to retain these privileges. Which is why the changes being sought to be brought about in J&K, as well as in other parts of the country, are necessary to establish a strong foundation for the future. In what way can the interests of Kashmir’s Muslims be different from other members of society, unless the objective is to undermine the Indian Constitution? Why is it believed that other residents of the state including those freshly put on the voters’ lists would vote differently on political issues? Is it because it is a given that political power is used for personal purposes and the pursuit of wealth? It has nothing to do with ‘justice’ and everything to do with vested interests. This is why sectarian, regional and other arguments against integration have to be considered from a proper perspective. The perceived threats to culture, identity, language, tradition and belief need to be dealt with through robust policies and not exclusion and racism. There will be justice if the laws are just and in the interests of the common individual, and not by oppressing the helpless and the innocent. It is about time that the likes of Abdullah are consigned to irrelevance and the dustbin of history.