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JAMMU Epilogue AS IT IS JAMMU Jammu and Kashmir’s Monthly Magazine

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Jammu, October 1, 2009 / Vol 3 / Issue 10 || Price Rs. 30 || Postal Registration No. JK-350/2009-11 || www.epilogue.in

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Taking J&K Closer to World Bringing World Closer to J&K

Epilogue because there is more to know

34 Volume : 3, Number : 10 ISSN : 0974-5653

RNI : JKENG/2007/26070 www.epilogue.in F O R

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Drive out of the territorial boundary of Jammu and Kashmir and what most of India and world knows is only Kashmir. Back home one finds here three regions –Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh –completely different and often at loggerheads. That is what described internal dynamics. After a special issue on Ladakh (August, 2009) the present edition looks into the regional identity and issues of Jammu region –for generating a better understanding within and outside the region.

Epilogue Ø 5× October 2009

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TREADING FAILURE s world watches keenly the new unfolding developments in Pakistan, our Consulting Editor D Suba Chandran travelled to the troubled country to bring fresh perspectives for our readers in April Issue.

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J&K MOVING FORWARD ay issue was one of the rare collections of ideas where 12 natives from both sides of Jammu and Kashmir poured their ideas out of the heart on how boundaries can be blurred and relations can be strengthened.

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LOK SABHA POLLS 2009 ith Prof Rekha Chowdhary looking into various aspects, the May issue offered a complete view of the Lok Sabha elections in Jammu and Kashmir. An interview with Finance Minister Abdul Rahim Rather explained most critical questions on the state's economy

A R E Y O U M I S S I N G O U R PA S T S T O R I E S

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June 2009

THE FUTURE OF JAMMU AND KASHMIR uly 2009 issue offered a rare insight into the whole gamut of Kashmir issue. An ACDIS, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign sponsored study, which was the cover feature, examined Kashmir issue from different perspectives.

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July 2009

UNFOLDING THE LAND OF MOON ugust 2009 issue was one of the path-breaking in the life of Epilogue magazine. The cover story explored many aspects of life in Ladakh and carried a first hand of research on the state of media in the Himalayan cold desert.

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August 2009

UNDERSTANDING J&K ECONOMY lost has been written and debated on politics of Jammu and Kashmir but nothing much on the economy. Reading into J&K's annual budget that was presented in August, Epilogue's September issue focused on developmental and economic profile of Jammu and Kashmir.

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September 2009

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CONTENTS

Editor Zafar Iqbal Choudhary Publisher Yogesh Pandoh Consulting Editor D. Suba Chandran

In Verbatim Prologue Letters

10 13 14

Column Jammu Hills : The Historical Abode of Multi-Culturalism

41

Prof. Jigar Mohammad

Associate Editors Irm Amin Baig Tsewang Rigzin Volume 3, Issue 10, October 2009

General Manager Kartavya Pandoh

Deepika Thussoo

IN FOCUS

Manager Adarsh Rattan Bali (Marketing & Advertisement) Art Editor Keshav Sharma

Jammu As It Is !

16

Research Officer Raman Sharma Phones & email Office : +91 191 2493136 subscriptions : +91 99060 27136 Editorial: +91 94191 80762 Administration: +91 94191 82518 editor@epilogue.in subscription@epilogue.in Printed and Published by Yogesh Pandoh for Epilogue NewsCraft from Ibadat House, Madrasa Lane, Near Graveyard, Bathindi Top, Jammu, J&K - 180012 and Printed at : DEE DEE Reprographix, 3 Aikta Ashram, New Rehari Jammu (J&K) Disputes, if any, subject to jurisdiction of courts and competitive tribunals in Jammu only.

Features Handcuffed Innocence 73 Stories of Lost Childhood in J&K

22

Quenching the Thirst of 74 Uttarakhand Through Bottled Water Dinesh Pant

The Politics of Regional Identity

Special Report Exposure of Children to online-pornography : Implications Disastrous

Rekha Chowdhary

Javaid Rashid

Jammu Region The Story of Neglect

Special Article How to Read a Person by Gestures

Prof. Hari Om

Dr. G.Q. Sheikh

28

Discrimination The Symptoms in our DNA Anmol Sharma

31

The Limits of Duggar-Desh People, Politics and Leaders Viveyata Sharma

35

The Cost of Conflict : Between Capital Cities Manisha Sobhrajani

37

Rajouri-Poonch Sub-Regions and case for local autonomy K.D. Maini

RNI : JKENJ/2007/26070 ISN : 00974-5653 Price : Rs 30 Epilogue Ø 7× October 2009

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H E A R

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Who Said What

Kashmir should be an independent state, not Indian, not Pakistani. We should end this conflict. It should be a Ba'athist state between India and Pakistan Maverick Libyan leader Col Gaddafi at UN General Assembly

Eliminating militants and checking infiltration into Jammu and Kashmir from across the border though remains key focus but my priority also includes building conducive atmosphere Lt Gen BS Jaswal, new Commander of Army's Northern Command before taking over charge

There is notable progress on dialogue with Kashmiri separatists but exact details can not be revealed at this stage. Union Home Minister P Chidambram

I am happy that the Hurriyat Conference also wants peace and I hope they will take steps towards it Union Minister for New and Renewable Energy, Dr Farooq Abdullah

Our Bank has drawn two lessons from the depressing happenings of the 2008-09, one of strategy and the other of operations –first, the global problems can have local remedies; second, that in this phase of exceptional uncertainty, the best course is to remain conservative Dr Haseeb Drabu, Chairman and CE JK Bank at Bank's AGM

Epilogue Ø 8× October 2009


Mithi Jayee Dograin Di Boli Te’ Khand Mithe Log Dogre Sweet is the language of people of Jammu and Sweeter are the people

CITY LIMITS IMPACT FEATURE

S T O R I E S A Leaf From History

Jammu : Where Sweet is the Language, Sweeter are the People P-48

Making Historical Sense of Statues

India May Learn Lessons from Jammu P-52

Home Truths

City’s Most Acceptable Guardian P-63

JMC

I N T E R V I E W S KAVINDER GUPTA Mayor, JMC

P-65

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SURAJ PARKASH RAKWAL Secretary, JMC

P-73


SH. TARA CHAND

SH. KAVINDER GUPTA

Dy. Chief Minister

Mayor

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P R O L O G U E

From the Editor

Look Inwards Also Zafar Choudhary

T

he story of Jammu region is one of confusion. It is confusion today and was confusion 60 years back. For decades Jammu has lived on long standing complaint of discrimination against the region and there is still no end in sight for such gripes. There are complaints against the political leadership of Kashmir for keeping the political power concentrated in few hands and then there are complaints against New Delhi for extending a preferential treatment to Kashmir. While Jammu continues with its umpteen grumbles, there is a loud but not so sudden reversal of trend in the recent years. Since there is no proper reading of the trends due to a regional media divide between Kashmir and Jammu, complaints are now coming from Kashmir against the State for offering concessions to Jammu. Pick up any newspaper from Srinagar and there are stories on how allegedly the funds were diverted to Jammu or share in employment was tailored to hurt interests of Valley residents. Kashmir has started complaining more against allocation of larger resources and employment share to Jammu. Select lists of J&K Combined Services (popularly KAS), Medical and Engineering, Naib Tehsildars, Junior Assistants and even constables have all

reflected in recent years more candidates coming in from Jammu than from Kashmir. Development indicators also suggest that per capita annual expenditure in Jammu region is above and Kashmir region below the state level average. These issues are now being protested in Kashmir. Jammu is, however, not taking full note of. In an interview to Epilogue last year, a senior National Conference leader, n o w M e m b e r o f Pa r l i a m e n t Mohammad Shafi Uri put the issue in his own way: “the discrimination sentiment in Jammu is more of psychological in nature. There was Dogra rule till 1947 and some people have yet to come to terms with realties of democracy”. Shafi's statement may be one set of opinion but that does not explain the whole situation. Leaving aside the controversial statistics of development and job allocation, there is at least one visible case of permanent discrimination against Jammu –the number of assembly constituencies higher by nine in Kashmir than in Jammu. The decision making process, therefore, is tilted in favour of Kashmir which is seen in Jammu is a permanent and unending discrimination. The way Jammu succeeded in getting Central University through an agitation, the permanent imbalance of assembly

Epilogue Ø 11 × October 2009

seats too could have been addressed someday but there are inherent problems within the region. Jammu is further divided into sub-regions with very clear religious and ethnic undercurrents. What jeopardizes the cause of Jammu region is the fact that discrimination discourse in Jammu is mostly city-centric and often lets the religious sentiments to overtake regional issues? For example, the Muslim dominated districts of region –Rajouri, Poonch, Kishtwar, Doda, Ramban and Reasi –often refuse to become party to the cases projected in districts of Jammu, Samba, Kathua etc –essentially the Hindu dominated districts. With this division within the region, many in Kashmir and elsewhere in the country dub any agitation in Jammu as communal and they often have valid reasons to say so. At Epilogue, we have been arguing for close to three years that internal synergy among regions –Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh –within the state is most essential for resolution of all issues confronting Jammu and Kashmir. It is true that there are issues within the regions but they can be resolved without having targeted the other region as an offender. Feedback : zafarchoudhary@epilogue.in


L E T T E R S

Readers Write Unusual for J&K I am a student at the University of Chicago. I lived in Jammu and Kashmir for one year in 2004-05 and I have visited state since then. My primary interest is with respect to the Right to Information in Jammu and Kashmir. I have worked on this issue since 2005. I recently encountered Epilogue and read your most recent edition and I thought the quality of content was very good and particularly unusual for J&K. Epilogue magazine almost seems J&K's answer to Outlook. I don't know if your magazine has any particular political inclinations but I hope it does not. I have been working closely with my best friend and Kashmiri activist Muzaffar Bhat in promoting the Right to Information in J&K and would like to write for Epilogue on the issue. PAUL LA PORTE The University of Chicago United States SEPTEMBER 2009

Make Epilogue Fortnightly I must compliment you for the tremendous work you are engaged in through Epilogue. It is very informative journal, which has got quite impressive and loyal readership in Kashmir and here in Delhi as well. I have recommended it to many of my like-minded friends and they are simply addicted to it. Though I only wish that you make it fortnightly.

ZAFAR MEHDI Hindustan Times New Delhi

Half story on democracy

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nderstanding the true contours of democracy in Kashmir needs a balanced approach and sense of history. Riyaz Wani (Kashmir's Democratic Catharsis, Epilogue, September 2009) has tried to portray the murkier picture of the elections held in 2008-09 by distorting the facts and leaving many questions unanswered: It was highly misleading by the author to say that "the same people who fought the system in the summer voted for it in the winter". As we all know that there is good amount of support for the pro freedom leaders and at the same time there is space for pro Indian leaders also. In summer supporters of pro- freedom camp organized few 'million marches' where as in winter workers of pro-Indian parties managed the election show. The author writes "an estimated 63 per cent of voters cast their vote in the valley". As per the official statement 63 percent voted in whole state where as almost 43 per cent voted in valley. However as per the survey done by independent agencies only 15 per cent voted in valley. Majority of these 15 percent voted in rural areas whereas urban Kashmir boycotted the process. Why people in rural Kashmir voted there are few reasons for it:Firstly these areas are highly infested with Indian army, during summer those who participated in pro-freedom rallies were beaten to pulp and even booked under PSA while as women were harassed and humiliated. So they were conscious of the consequences if they will not cast the vote. Secondly yes, pro-India parties like PDP made inroads for the first time by exploiting the inhuman conditions of the rural people, there is no electricity, no water, no roads etc. women have to travel two miles in some cases to fetch water for drinking purpose. Thirdly, even if they voted they made it clear that they are doing it for the procurement of the basic amenities and it should not be seen as abhorrence for the basic sentiment of 'azadi'.

Epilogue Ă˜ 12 Ă— October 2009


L E T T E R S

Readers Write Bitter But True

Creative Approach

Anmol Sharma's article (CUAS and the stillborn wannabes, Epilogue, September, 2009) is though bitter and blunt but exceptionally daring and truthful. Zafar Choudhary's the game is low for now as divided we always fall) also brings home the point that most of the problems Jammu confronts with come from within. True. Jammu has long been suffering from a leadership vacuum. Most of the leaders have deliberately limited their clouts to Hindu dominated or Muslim dominated areas which is a dangerous trend. We have seen Epilogue not taking any regional lines but the way you have tried to educate people by pointing out the loopholes is different kind of regional awakening which many may not like because truth is bitter. Harping on a Jammu region which does not include the districts of Rajouri, Poonch, Doda, Kishtwar, Ramban and Reasi will never serve any purpose. There has to be an inclusive approach as rightly suggested in your columns.

Dear Editor As the cover title suggested (Understanding J&K Economy, Epilogue September 2009), I had thought inside is expert opinion and analysis by economists and budget specialists. It was not. I found your way, of laying out Finance Minister's speech in a way that even a beginner can understand, quite innovative and creative. With honourable exceptions, the Economists and specialists usually write in a style which only their community can understand. Your approach of simplifying the subject was quite helpful in understanding the scenario.

ISHTIYAQ AHMED Koteranka, Budhal Rajouri

During Parliament elections not only urban Kashmir but also rural Kashmir boycotted (except in some parts of Kupwara ) and it was accepted by the anchors of the DD news at that time when one of the anchors who were hosting the live show, said that people of Kashmir have given mixed response by not participating in the parliamentary elections. After the elections a fact finding team was sent by European Union, which categorically rejected the elections and said that elections cannot be substitute to the referendum. Am I allowed asking the people of India, was it first time that elections were held in Kashmir? Was it first time that majority voted? If your answer is 'yes' then you accept that for the last six decades Kashmir was your colony, now Kashmiris have lost every hope and have kneeled to your 'democratic' pressure. If your answer is 'no' then what is new about these elections, why are you beating the drum unnecessarily? This process is going on for last six decades and it has not brought an iota of change in the contours of dispute. If, for the sake of argument, we believe that 63 per cent voted in elections. Then why Government of India feels shy in calling the referendum, pro freedom leaders are on the record in saying that if majority votes in favor of India, we will have no hesitation in calling ourselves Indians. Last but not the least, the presence of more than seven lakh troops, which were the part and parcel of this so called democratic process, is more than enough for a third person to call it a wangled show. I hope that these few lines will find space in your esteemed magazine. MA SUFI, Srinagar

Epilogue Ă˜ 13 Ă— October 2009

ANUPRIYA DESHMUKH Jawaharlal Nehru University New Delhi

NOTE : The issue which writer of this letter has sought to raise here go far beyond the scope of article he reacted on. It is still being published for the fact that Epilogue seeks to offer an open democratic space to divergent views without any censor as long as the reasonable limits of expression are maintained. Editor


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Jammu as it is!

The Politics of Regional Identity Regional Dimensions Beyond the Kashmiri Identity Politics

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REKHA CHOWDHARY Author teaches Political Science at the University of Jammu. (rekchowdhary@gmail.com)

he Kashmiri identity politics is the most dominant politics of the State and it is this politics that assumes visibility in the State. This is mainly due to the ongoing state of conflict in Jammu and Kashmir which is rooted in this identity politics. Tracing its origins to the political movement against the Dogra rule, the Kashmiri identity politics has gone through various phases of its articulation and assertion. While the first phase of the political movement was defined by urge for control over political power as well as radical transformation of the economic structure governed by the feudal and monarchical logic, the second phase of the movement that started in post-1953 period was defined by the urge for an autonomous political space in the context of erosion of State's autonomy and intrusive role of the Centre. The present phase of the identity politics has been defined by the logic of militancy and separatism. Beyond the Kashmiri identity politics which remains the focus of the political attention there are various other manifestations of the identities and their politics in Jammu and Kashmir. However, much of the identity politics outside the Valley is generated in response to the Kashmiri identity politics and is reflected either in the

Epilogue Ă˜ 14 Ă— October 2009

context of its specificity vis-Ă -vis the conflict situation or in response to the location of Kashmir in the power politics of the State. It is in this vein that the regional and sub-regional identity politics of Jammu region assumes importance. The sense of political alienation that underlies the conflict politics of Kashmir is not felt in the same manner in these two regions. The concerns of these regions as well as sub-regions are specific to the issues of power sharing within the state as well as within the region. Unlike the Kashmiri identity politics, political concerns here do not revolve around the State's relationship with India. On the contrary, these revolve around the 'Kashmir-centric' politics of the state and the interregional and intra-regional relationships. Much of the regional politics (as also the sub-regional politics) has 'Kashmir' as its reference point. In Jammu region there is a political discourse that revolves around the issues related to regional 'deprivation and neglect'. 'Kashmir' in this discourse forms the 'centre of power' within the state and is perceived to be dominating not only the power structure of the state but also controlling the economic and material resources. It is on this basis that the popular perceptions have been articulated around the concept of regional imbalances and a number of agitations have been organised both in Jammu.


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The politics of regional discontent is multi-layered and encompasses three k i n d s o f i s s u e s : f i r s t l y, t h e developmental issues, mainly those related to the distribution of material resources; secondly the issues related to the power balances within the State and thirdly the larger political and ideological issues related to the political status of the State.

Development Issues The first set of issues emanate from the structural changes that the state went through immediately after the abolition of monarchy in 1947. The change in the power structure affected the position and privileges of the classes associated with Dogra rule – the landholding classes and those surviving under the patronage of the royalty especially belonging to upper castes. The new government led by the National Conference introduced its radical agenda of land reforms and other structural changes in the economy as envisaged in its New Kashmir Manifesto. These reforms took place in three phases. In the first phase of the reforms, in April 1948, the government abolished the jagirs, muafis, and mukarraries. The second phase of reforms took place in October 1948 when the government amended the State Tenancy Act of 1924 which provided for security of tenure to the tenants. The third and the most important stage of reforms was set with the passage of Abolition of the Big Landed Estates Act of 1950. What was specific about this reform was that unlike rest of India, the landlords were not paid compensation for the excess land recovered from them. Apart from the land reforms, many other policies were introduced which had the impact of upsetting the position of those in privilege. The extension of educational

opportunities for larger number of people, for instance, was to open up state employment, monopolised so far by the elite, to the new sections of society. The state was meanwhile exposed to substantial 'developmental' activities in the decade of fifties and sixties which resulted in the social and

In Jammu region there is a political discourse that revolves around the issues related to regional 'deprivation and neglect'. 'Kashmir' in this discourse forms the 'centre of power' within the state and is perceived to be dominating not only the power structure of the state but also controlling the economic and material resources. It is on this basis that the popular perceptions have been articulated around the concept of regional imbalances and a number of agitations have been organised both in Jammu. economic mobility, especially in Jammu and Srinagar, the two urban centres of the State. The impact of these changes could be seen in the political responses of the entrenched classes of Jammu who sought to define the loss of their privileges in regional terms. The process started right after the initiation of the land reforms when the erstwhile rich landed class that had to suffer the

Epilogue Ø 15 × October 2009

loss of land (without getting compensation) projected it as antiJammu policy. Not only they defined the denial of compensation as discriminatory but also saw in the land reform legislations certain concessions aimed to benefit the Kashmiri land owning class. The exemption of orchards from the effect of land reform legislations for instance, was seen as a pro-Kashmir policy since most of the orchards were located in Kashmir. It is not to say that there were no beneficiaries of the land reforms in Jammu. The large number of Dalits of Jammu like the mass of tillers in Kashmir became the owners of land as a consequence of the land reform policies. However, the Dalits, unlike the mass of Kashmiris were not politically mobilised and did not have a political voice. The course of Jammu's politics, therefore, was set by the entrenched classes. Projecting the loss of their privileges as 'Jammu's deprivation' under a “Kashmir-centric' politics, they gave a direction to the regional politics based upon zero-sum relationship between the two regions. The politics of regional divide was further boosted with the enlargement of the middle classes both in Jammu as well as in Kashmir. There was this peculiar context of the state's economy which while being flushed with money was simultaneously defined by its perpetual status of dependency upon the Centre with no source of employment other than the government jobs. The artificially enlarged state sector therefore not only became the source of intense competition but also a terrain for regional contestation.

Issues Related to Power Balance However, though development issues have often found central space in


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the political discourse of regional deprivation, it is actually the issues related to the power balance within the state that remain at the core of the regional identity politics. There is a deep-rooted feeling in Jammu region that there is lack of political parity between the two major regions of the state – while Kashmir is the dominant political partner, Jammu does not have enough share in power. The politics of the state has been so structured that power politics, till very recently, has been dominated by Kashmiri political elite. Kashmir region has a larger share in the State Legislative Assembly and therefore has greater representation in the ministerial and other positions. As compared to 37 seats of Jammu, this region is represented by 46 seats. There are many in Jammu who claim that representation of this region does not justify the population and geographical dimensions of this region. Delimitation which will give the Jammu region parity to Kashmir remains a persistent demand of the political parties representing this region. The relative dominance of the political elite of Kashmir in the power politics has also been due to the homogenised politics of Kashmir: a single party dominating the political scene with not much space for opposition. This has been mainly due to lack of democratisation of Kashmir's politics and a deliberate attempt to contain all kinds of dissent within the mainstream politics. As against this, Jammu's politics has been fragmented from the very beginning. Being a plural society having different kinds of political identities, it has been reflecting internal divergence which, in turn is reflected within the Legislative Assembly as well. The political elite of this region, therefore, have not been able to negotiate within the power politics of

the State. As a consequence, the ruling party having a sway on most of the seats from Kashmir region has been in a position to form the government without much dependence on other regions. This has been truer of the National Conference which has dominated the political scene of the State for the longest period of time. Being a Kashmir-based party, it could survive in power politics with merely a

opportunities, or distribution of resources, the major reason underlying the agitational response of Jammu has been the political disparity. Recognising this factor, Gajendergadkar Commission appointed after one of the major agitation of Jammu has actually recommended the greater representation to Jammu region in power politics.

Ideological Divide

Kashmir's identity politics got to be organised around Kashmir's relationship with India and Jammu's identity politics was organised around Jammu's relationship with Kashmir. Kashmir came to form the reference point for the regional politics of Jammu. The issues that have been raised here are mostly related to the discrimination of Jammu in the Kashmir-centric power relationship token representation of elite from Jammu region. Wi t h n o t m u c h s c o p e f o r accommodation in power politics the Jammu's political class has been raising the issue of regional imbalances and mobilising the people around the disparities and discriminations of all kinds. This is the reason that Jammu has been witness to a number of agitations. Though these agitations have been triggered by the issues related to educational and employment

Epilogue Ø 16 × October 2009

However, besides these two sets of issues underlying the regional politics, it is the ideological stance around the final status of the State that provides emotional substance to the identity politics. In response to the emotive identity politics of Kashmir, an equally emotive response is sought to be generated by the rightist forces in Jammu region emphasising incongruity of this region's political aspirations with those of Kashmir. Regional politics in this context gets defined by the feeling of strong antagonism towards the 'Kashmiri' identity politics. Much of this politics follows the basic approach of the RSS towards the Kashmir question – contestation of the special status of the State guaranteed by Article 370 as an appeasement of Muslims and as a symbol of incomplete integration of the State within Indian Union. One could see a reflection of this kind of politics during the 1952 Praja Parishad agitation of Jammu in which the politics of autonomy was opposed under the demand of 'ek vidhan, ek pradhan, ek nishaan' (One Constitution, one president and one symbol). By this agitation the basis of the special constitutional status guaranteed by Article 370 of Indian constitution was contested. Projecting the full constitutional integration of the State with India as the political aspiration of Jammu, the Praja Parishad sought to emphasize the divergence between the


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politics of Jammu and Kashmir – While Kashmir demanded Autonomy, the Jammu region demanded greater integration of state with India. It is difficult to argue that this position is shared by all or even by most of the people of Jammu region. It has a clear cut ideological stance of the parties and organisations of Hindu Right and even when these parties seek to represent all the people of the region, the fact remains that the constituency of these parties remains limited to the Hindu-dominated urban areas of the region. However, in the absence of a regional party of Jammu, these organisations seek to appropriate Jammu's regional politics and make claim on behalf of the people of the region. The fact that these organisations represent the voice of the most entrenched and the most dominant classes makes it easy for them to capture the regional politics and hegemonise it, rendering other voices of the region invisible and marginalised.

Political Divergence However, notwithstanding the extreme response of the Hindu Rightist organisations, the political divergence between the two regions remains a crucial factor in understanding the inter-regional relationship within the state. The fact that there is specificity to the context of the regional politics of Kashmir makes the issue of divergence quite significant. Historically located in the movement against the Dogra rulers, the Kashmiri identity politics has evolved around the context of Kashmir's relationship with India and has manifested itself in various dimensions – ranging from the politics of Autonomy to the politics of Azadi. The exclusivity of the Kashmiri regional politics and its failure to extend beyond the physical boundaries of this region has been established by the fact that neither this

kind of politics forms the dominant logic of Jammu's politics nor does it manifest itself in any form in this region. Right from the time of inception of the National Conference during late 1930s, the identity politics of Kashmir came to be defined by the local regional logic.

The way the politics of regional discontent has been appropriated and articulated by the forces of the Hindu Right, it has alienated the people of the Muslim dominated subregions. People both in Poonch-Rajouri as well as in Doda sub-regions feel neglected by the elite of Kashmir as well as of Jammu. On various indices of economy and development, these areas fare much worse than other parts of the region and feel that their problems have not been appreciated and dealt with either in the 'Kashmir-centric' power politics or in the 'urbancentric' discourse of the regional elite of Jammu. This logic continued to operate in the post-1947 period even when the NC assumed the power politics of the state. Its failure to transcend from its regional orientation to become a party having a base all over the state, resulted in the two regions not having a common ground of politics. On the contrary, its

Epilogue Ø 17 × October 2009

Kashmir-centric political approach created a perception of neglect of Jammu region which was accentuated by the response of Hindu Rightist forces which sought to project the change of political power from the monarchy to popular rule as a change of power from Jammu to Kashmir region. It is around Jammu's neglect in the power structure of the state that the Jammu's identity politics came to be organised in the post-1947 period. It is in this context that the political divergence between the two regions came to be defined. While the Kashmir's identity politics got to be organised around Kashmir's relationship with India and Jammu's identity politics was organised around Jammu's relationship with Kashmir. Kashmir came to form the reference point for the regional politics of Jammu. The issues that have been raised here are mostly related to the discrimination of Jammu in the Kashmir-centric power relationship. The context of political divergence came to be more clearly focused during last two decades of militancy. The separatist politics that emerged as the dominant response of the Valley did not have much impact in Jammu, though militancy did take roots in certain parts of the region. Other than the Kashmiri speaking part of the Doda sub-region, the separatist movement did not find much support here.. The districts of Po o n c h a n d R a j o u r i , t h e t w o predominantly Muslim districts of the region bordering with Pakistan administered Kashmir, remained untouched even by militancy for quite some time. It was only in late nineties that these areas became active in militancy-related activities. Sharpening of the regional identity politics has been one of the implications of the Kashmirspecific separatist politics. While the militant violence in itself generated a


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political response against militancy, the popular separatist sentiment in the Valley resulted in the expansion of space for the Rightist politics and a counter-assertion of chauvinistic 'regional' and 'nationalist' sentiments. In the overall milieu of assertion of regional sentiments, the demand for 'Regional Autonomy' was raised and for some time, the organisations lying at the fringe were also able to raise the demands of reorganisation of the State and formation of a separate state of Jammu. Though these demands did not have much impact on the overall politics of the region, yet they did succeed in sharpening the politics of regional divide throughout the period of late nineties.

Sub-Regional Politics

Identity

The context of conflict during last two decades has not only reflected the political divergence between Kashmir and Jammu region but has also clearly established as to how extensive and deep-rooted is the impact of the political divide throughout Jammu region. The conflict by its nature remains ethnic and regional in nature and despite the efforts to give it a religious colour by the fundamentalist organisations, it has not crossed the regional boundaries. Jammu's Muslims have not, as a matter of course, joined the separatist movement of Kashmir. It is interesting to note that neither the All Party Hurriyat Conference or any other separatist organisation has any effective presence in any part of Jammu region. Of the three major Muslimdominated sub-regions of Jammu, it is only the Doda sub-region that reflects some influence of the politics of Kashmir. But the influence is more due to ethnic rather than religious reasons. A substantial part of the population of

this region is ethnically Kashmiri, having migrated from the Valley at some point of time. Maintaining their Kashmiri identity, these Muslims of Doda, do empathise with the politics of Kashmir. But their sympathies do not go beyond a point. Feeling the brunt of extreme backwardness, they blame the Kashmiri

Of the three major Muslimdominated sub-regions of Jammu, it is only the Doda sub-region that reflects some influence of the politics of Kashmir. But the influence is more due to ethnic rather than religious reasons. A substantial part of the population of this region is ethnically Kashmiri, having migrated from the Valley at some point of time. Maintaining their Kashmiri identity, these Muslims of Doda, do empathise with the politics of Kashmir. But their sympathies do not go beyond a point

elite for their marginalisation. The same is the position of the Muslims of the Poonch-Rajouri sub-region, the other Muslim dominated sub-region of Jammu who feel that Kashmir-centric power politics has kept the sub-region perpetually deprived. To a large extent, the regional discontent of Jammu defined by feeling of deprivation and neglect in the

Epilogue Ă˜ 18 Ă— October 2009

Kashmir-centric power politics and administration, is all pervasive and shared by people all over the region. However, the way the politics of regional discontent has been appropriated and articulated by the forces of the Hindu Right, it has alienated the people of the Muslim dominated sub-regions. People both in Poonch-Rajouri as well as in Doda subregions feel neglected by the elite of Kashmir as well as of Jammu. On various indices of economy and development, these areas fare much worse than other parts of the region and feel that their problems have not been appreciated and dealt with either in the 'Kashmircentric' power politics or in the 'urbancentric' discourse of the regional elite of Jammu. The discourse of regional deprivation of Jammu has remained generally oriented towards the elite and urban interests. Most of the agitations spearheaded in the name of regional discrimination of Jammu have focused on the interest of the educated middle class located in the urban centres. It is from the perspective of the most developed parts of the region that the issues of regional discrimination and regional imbalances have been raised. The real backwardness of the region which is represented by the poverty, illiteracy and backwardness of the marginalized sections of society mostly situated in the peripheral sub-regions is not reflected in this discourse. Jammu's politics of regional discontent could not be articulated in an inclusive manner due to the nonavailability of a regional party. Unlike the National Conference which could evolve an overarching regional agenda for Kashmir, Jammu did not have the benefit of a regional party that could incorporate in its politics the aspirations of various communities and sub-regions within Jammu. There was a sort of political vacuum in the region


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after 1947 and this was filled in by the forces of Hindu Right which sought to give a communal direction to the regional aspirations of Jammu. Though these forces did not succed in communalising the politics of Jammu region, yet their political assertion even from the fringes of the regional politics did have the effect of creating a political discourse of regional politics which was quite exclusive and did not represent the urges and aspirations of people belonging to backward areas. It is in this context that one can place the intra-regional political assertions, especially those emanating from the backward areas of the region. Along with the demand for a PoonchRajouri Hill Council, there is a demand for Chenab Valley Hill council arising in Doda. This demand seeking for

The discourse of regional deprivation of Jammu has remained generally oriented towards the elite and urban interests. Most of the agitations spearheaded in the name of regional discrimination of Jammu have focused on the interest of the educated middle class located in the urban centres. It is from the perspective of the most developed parts of the region that the issues of regional discrimination and regional imbalances have been raised. The real backwardness of the region which is represented by the poverty, illiteracy and backwardness of the marginalized sections of society mostly situated in the peripheral sub-regions is not reflected in this discourse. devolution of power at the sub-regional level exists parallel to the demand for regional autonomy. While the demand for regional autonomy is raised from the

urban centres of the region, the demand for Hill Council or the subregional autonomy is raised from the backward areas of the region.

JAMIA HAMDARD (Hamdard University)

Hamdard Nagar, New Delhi - 110052 “Accredited by National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) in ‘A’ Category”

JAMIA HAMDARD RESIDENTIAL COACHING CENTRE FOR PREPARING STUDENTS OF MINORITY COMMUNITY FOR ENTRY INTO SERVICES Jamia Hamdard has been entrusted by the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India to provide coaching to students from Muslim minority community for preparing them for entry into services in Government & Private and Public Sector Undertakings. The Centre is being setup in the main campus of Jamia Hamdard, Hamdard Nagar, New Delhi - 110062. The University envisages offering coaching for Central and State civil services and services in Railways, Banks, Judiciary, Financial Institutions, General Service Sector etc. The coaching program for 6-8 months duration will be rigorous and intensive. It will lay stress on sharpening the communicative skill and developing analytical approach to situations and problem. Provision of internet facility to the students to retrieve required information quickly and group discussion with retired and serving Civil Servants will be added features of the coaching. The coaching would also involve extensive personality development modules. A total of 100 candidates will be admitted in the first batch with 50% seats reserved for girls from the community. Hostel facility may be made available to candidates from outside Delhi. 20% of the selected candidates will get the stipend of Rs. 2,000/- per month. Applications on the prescribed form are invited from the bright candidates from minority community latest by 20th October 2009. The prescribed application form is available on our website. No application form will be entertained thereafter. The Entrance Test for the coaching will be held on 15th November 2009 at Calicut, Chennai, Delhi, Guwahati, Hyderbad, Lucknow, Mumbai, Patna, Srinagar ancd Thiruvananthapuram. The group discussion and interview will be held in Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi - 110062, are the date will be announced on our website.

Website : www.jamiahamdard.edu Email : mzabdin@rediffmail.com Ph. Nos. : 011-26059688 (12 lines) Extn. 5303, 5307 Fax : 011-26059663

Sd/Registrar


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Jammu as it is!

Jammu Region The Story of Neglect Jammu and Kashmir joined the Indian Union on October 26, 1947. Ever since, then, the people of Jammu province, Hindus and Muslims included, have been suffering immense losses in spheres political or otherwise owing to the discriminatory policies being pursued ruthlessly by the Kashmir-centric authorities. It can be said without any hesitation that the life of the people of Jammu is highly pathetic. Their complaints are umpteen and appear justifiable when viewed in the light of the official statistics themselves, leave alone their complaint that they have also been ignored in matters relating to governance or very crucial political and democratic processes.

C

onscious of the space limit, I will focus only on sever issues to make the point that Jammu province is indeed a victim of gross discrimination and these include poor road connectivity, inadequate power generation, small number of administrative units, acute unemployment, glaring disparity in wages, wrong admission policy and invidious distinction between Kashmir and Jammu as far as allotment of funds are concerned.

Poor Road Connectivity

PROF. HARI OM Author is Maharaja Gulab Singh Chair Professor at the University of Jammu (omhari09@yahoo.in)

It is hardly necessary to point out that roads are the lifeline of any region. The figures as contained in the Report of the Task Force on development of Jammu and Kashmir show the extent to which the State Government has ignored Jammu in this very important sphere. This Task Force was constituted by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2006. According to it, the total road length in Kashmir, which has an area of less than 16,000 sq kms, was 7129 kilometers in 2006. Contrast to this, the road length in Jammu with an area almost two times more that of Kashmir

Epilogue Ă˜ 20 Ă— October 2009

was 4571 kilometers. This shows that the road density km / sq km in Kashmir and Jammu was 310.4 and 138.7, respectively. That most of the towns and villages in the Jammu's mountainous and hilly areas continue to remain inaccessible even today is a sad reflection on the ruling elite. The report of the Task Force shows that the erstwhile Doda district in Jammu province, which had a land area of 11,691 sq km, had road length of 613 km. This means that per sq km road density in the erstwhile Doda district, which witnesses road accidents every other day, was a paltry 5.2 km. In Poonch district, the per sq km road density was 13 km as it had a land area of 1,674 sq km and road length of 217 km. As far as the erstwhile Udhampur district was concerned, the per sq km road density in this district was 15.8 km as it had an area of 4,550 sq km and a road length of 719 km. In Rajouri district, the per sq km road density was 19.4 km. This district had a land area of 2,630 sq km and road length of 511 km. As for Kathua district, it was 29.5 km. Kathua had an area of 2,651 sq km and road length of 782 km. The erstwhile


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had a land area of 3,984 sq km and 1,328 km of road length. This shows that per sq km road density in this district was 33.3 km. In the erstwhile Pulwama district, the per sq km road density was 62.8 as it had 1,398 sq km area and 878 km road length. The per sq km road density in the erstwhile Srinagar district was 64 km. It had a land area of 2228 sq km and road length of 1425 km. Budgam district was equally fortunate. In this district, the road density per sq km was 81.8 km as it had an area of 1,371 sq km and road length of 1,122 km. As for erstwhile Baramulla and Kupwara districts, the per sq km road density in these two districts was 33.9 km and 34.6 km, respectively. The Baramulla district had 4,588 sq km of land area and 1,553 km of road length and Kupwara district 2,379 sq km of land area and 823 km of road length. (Development of Jammu and Kashmir Growth Generating Initiatives, Government of India, New Delhi, November 2006, p. 14). It may be pointed out that Baramulla and Kupwara districts are essentially ethnically non-Kashmiri.

Inadequate Power Generation

Jammu district was somewhat fortunate as the per sq km road density there was 55.8 km. The land area of Jammu district was, it needs to be noted, 3,097 sq km and the road length 1,729 km. All this shows neglect of Jammu province in the sense that the per sq km road density in this province was as low as 5.75 km. The position of Ladakh was

worse still. In Ladakh, the per sq km road density was 3.7 km. Leh and Kargil districts of the trans-Himalayan Ladakh had land areas of 45,110 sq km and 14,036 sq km, respectively, and road length of 1,164 km and 676 km, respectively. Contrast to Jammu, in Kashmir, the per sq km road density was 49 km in 2006. The erstwhile Anantnag district

Epilogue Ă˜ 21 Ă— October 2009

In 1947, the total installed capacity of power stations in Jammu and in Kashmir Divisions was just 4 MW. It rose to 55.64 mw in 1967. Jammu produced over 26.39mw and Kashmir 24. In Ladakh, the installed capacity was only around 4 mw. From 1967 to 1996, the installed capacity in Kashmir stepped up very sharply. It rose from 24 mw to 335.36 mw. Contrast to this, the installed capacity in Jammu during the same period increased only marginally. It increased from 26.39 mw to 48.54 mw. In Ladakh, the installed capacity rose to 16.48 mw. This clearly shows that the installed capacity in Jammu and Ladakh increased by 83 per cent and 213 per cent, respectively, and in


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Units, December 1983, PP. 12, 61, 214, 362). But the Congress-led Government in the state bypassed this recommendation and increased the number of districts in Kashmir with one stroke of pen from the existing 6 to 10 in 2007, one each for 1585.3 sq km on an average, with a couple of districts just one-tehsil district (for example, Shopian). The State Government created 4 more districts in Kashmir despite the fact that there was no such demand in the Valley. It also increased the number of districts in Jammu from 6 to 10, but one each for 2629.3 sq km. The people of Jammu, who fought for more districts between 1975 and 2007 and laid down half a dozen lives for this cause, wanted the State Government to implement the Wazir Commission recommendations in letter and spirit. But the State Government implemented the report in a wrong way, saying it believed in the “principle of justice and equity” overlooking the fact that Jammu had more land area.

Kashmir, it increased by whopping 1,297.33 per cent. The official statistics on installed power capacity in terms of percentage share of different regions between 1967 and 1996 further indicate fast growing inter-regional disparities. For instance, in 1967, out of the total installed capacity of 55.64 mw in the state, the share of Kashmir was 43.13 per cent, Jammu's 47.43 per cent and Ladakh 9.44 per cent, respectively. But by 1996, the scene witnessed a total change and to the advantage of Kashmir. This is evident from the fact that while the share of Kashmir in 1996 was 84 per cent, that of Jammu and Ladakh was only 12 per cent and 4 per cent, respectively. Chenani in Jammu Province is the only State Power Plant

with an installed capacity of 25 mw. The remaining State Power Plants with an installed capacity of 335.36 mw are in the Valley. These are Upper Jhelum, Lower Jhelum, Mohra, Ganderbal, Upper Sindh. Besides, there are a number of gas turbines in Kashmir, which also cater to the needs of its people. On the other hand, the Kalakot Thermal Plant in Jammu has been virtually closed down.

Administrative units The story of matters relating to administrative units is also not very different. According to the Wazir Commission report of 1983, Jammu deserved 10 districts and Kashmir 7 (Report of the Commission for Rationalization of Administrative

Epilogue Ø 22 × October 2009

The Srinagar district in Kashmir with a land area of 2,228 sq km and which consisted of 168 villages was divided into two districts -- Srinagar and Ganderbal. In contrast, Jammu district having an area of 3,079 sq km and which consisted of 1,054 villages was been left high and dry, nothing withstanding the creation of Samba district out it.


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Sulabh International Social Service Organisation

Protection of Environment Through Sanitation

Be Clean, Be Happy & Be Happy Sulabh International Social Service Organisation (NGO with Special Consultative stations in UNO) Address : 62/1, Trikuta Nagar, Jammu - 180012 Phone : 0191-2472034 Fax : 01912472407 Email : sulabhjammu@yahoo.com


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The Srinagar district in Kashmir with a land area of 2,228 sq km and which consisted of 168 villages was divided into two districts -- Srinagar and Ganderbal. In contrast, Jammu district having an area of 3,079 sq km and which consisted of 1,054 villages was been left high and dry, nothing withstanding the creation of Samba district out it. It is hardly necessary to point out that Jammu district was far more superior to Srinagar district in terms of population and land area, including the balanced area. For instance, the population of Jammu district, according to the 2001 census, was 15,71,911, as against the Srinagar district's 11,83,493. As for the balanced area (where developmental activities could be undertaken), it was 1, 882 sq km in Jammu and 1,537 sq km in Srinagar. Likewise, the erstwhile Pulwama district in Kashmir, which had an area of 1,398 sq km and balanced area of 315 sq km and which consisted of 536 villages, was divided into two districts -Pulwama and Shopian. On the other hand, Kathua district in Jammu province, which had a land area of 2,651 sq km and balanced area more than five times that of Pulwama and which consisted of 555 villages, was left untouched. The balanced area of Pulwama and Kathua districts was 315 sq km and 1,616 sq km, respectively. Hiranagar tehsil in Kathua district was bigger in size as compared to the erstwhile Pulwama district. Not just this. Srinagar city, which was way behind Jammu city in terms of population and area, was divided into two tehsils - Srinagar North and Srinagar South - with river Jhelum as the dividing line. Contrast to this, Jammu city, through which River Tawi passes, was left untouched. It may be noted that Jammu Municipal Corporation consists of 71 wards and the Srinagar Municipal Corporation consists of only 65 wards.

Acute Unemployment Problem

The unemployment rate in Kashmir was less than 30 per cent, as against 69.75 per cent in Jammu. The people of Jammu province had a very little representation in the civil secretariat, the seat of power. According to government report of 2007, the number of employees working in the civil secretariat was 1715. These include gazetted, non- gazetted and fourth class employees. The number of gazetted officers was 199. The share of Kashmir was 118 (56 per cent) and that of Jammu 81 (44 per cent). As for the number of non-gazetted officers, it was 1041 (767 or 73.67 per cent from Kashmir and 274 or 26.23 per cent from Jammu). The number of fourth class employees was 363 (256 or 70.52 per cent from Kashmir and 107 or 29.48 per cent from Jammu).

Epilogue Ă˜ 27 Ă— October 2009

If the official data is to be believed, then it can be said that the share of the people of Jammu province in the vital employment sector is more than inadequate. According to the information tabled on the floor of the assembly in 2007, the unemployment rate in Kashmir was less than 30 per cent, as against 69.75 per cent in Jammu. The people of Jammu province had a very little representation in the civil secretariat, the seat of power. According to the report, which the State Government presented to the Assembly on January 22, 2007, the number of employees from Kashmir, who were working in the civil secretariat, was three times that of Jammu. As for Ladakh, its share was a just 12 (0.68 per cent). According to the same report, the number of employees working in the civil secretariat was 1715. These include gazetted, non- gazetted and fourth class employees. The number of gazetted officers was 199. The share of Kashmir was 118 (56 per cent) and that of Jammu 81 (44 per cent). As for the number of non-gazetted officers, it was 1041 (767 or 73.67 per cent from Kashmir and 274 or 26.23 per cent from Jammu). The number of fourth class employees was 363 (256 or 70.52 per cent from Kashmir and 107 or 29.48 per cent from Jammu). That the youth of Jammu has not been given its due share in the employment sector can also be seen from other official figures. The figures from the employment exchanges located in the Kashmir's six districts show that they had till September 2006 registered 35,329 unemployed youth. The position in Jammu province was just the opposite. The Jammu provincebased employment exchanges had


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registered as many as 63,613 unemployed youth. In other words, the number of unemployed youth in Jammu province in September 2006 was nearly two times that of Kashmir. The story of neglect of the Jammu district-based technocrats was no different. There were 8,327 unemployed technocrats in Jammu district. In Srinagar district, the number was 1,511. That means the Jammu district had 7,826 more – over five times more – unemployed technocrats, as compared to Srinagar district. The region-wise break-up was: Jammu 11,861 and Kashmir 6,370 - a difference of 5,491 between the two provinces. Likewise, the total number of registered unemployed persons in Jammu district was 27,738. In Srinagar district, the number of such unemployed persons was 10,648. In other words, Jammu district had 17,090 more unemployed youth.

Glaring Disparity in Wages One of the complaints of the people of Jammu has been that the ruling coalition has turned highly discriminatory against those in Jammu working in the Public Health Engineering (PHE) Department under the Community Participation Scheme (CPS). Their complaint is genuine. Each Jammu-based worker is getting a monthly wage of Rs.500, as against the monthly wage of Rs.2,100 his Kashmiri counterpart is getting. The PHE, Irrigation and Tourism Minister, Dilawar Mir acknowledged this glaring disparity while participating in a debate on the grants relating to his departments on January 27, 2007. It was during this debate that certain members expressed their grave concern over the manner in which the State Government had been

treating the people of Jammu province. One of the members even went to extent of asking: “Should the youth of Jammu take to the gun in order to obtain justice?” When questioned repeatedly, the minister said that he needed a sum of Rs. 46 crores in order to meet the demand of the Jammu-based workers, who were working under the CPS. (Their number ran into thousands.) It also became clear from the discussion that the government had already paid full wages to such workers in Kashmir. It bears recalling that the wages of the employees working under the CPS were the same throughout the state.

Each Jammu-based worker is getting a monthly wage of Rs.500, as against the monthly wage of Rs.2,100 his Kashmiri counterpart is getting. Every worker was getting a monthly wage of Rs. 500. It was only in 2006 that the State Cabinet revised the wages of such employees. The decision was: Each employee working under the said scheme would get a monthly wage of Rs 2,100. It was indeed a good decision considering the prevailing price situation. The State Government did implement this decision but only partly. It was enforced in Kashmir alone, thus leaving such employees in Jammu high and dry. Their wages remain the same even today.

Wrong Admission Policy Similarly, the complaint of the people of Jammu province that their share in the state's professional colleges, including medical and dental

Epilogue Ø 28 × October 2009

colleges, is negligible and that there is an urgent need to revise the existing admission policy just cannot be brushed aside. It's a well-founded complaint. A scrutiny of the MBBS/BDS selection lists of the last 27 years reveals that the Jammu's share in the state's medical colleges dwindled from 60 per cent in 1990 to 52 per cent in 1991 to 38 per cent in 1994 to 36 per cent in 1995 to 20 per cent in 1997 to 17 per cent in 1998. In 1995, the share was 41 per cent (Report of the Committee set up by the Government of Jammu and Kashmir, January 13, 1999, P. 4). Between 1998 and 2008, the share of Jammu in these colleges remained almost the same, and sometimes even less. During the agitation days, several Jammu-based political groups demanded implementation of the Singhal Committee report, but nothing came out of their efforts. One of its recommendations of the Singhal committee was that admission in the state's medical and engineering colleges be made in accordance with the 1969 Jammu and Kashmir Universities Act, which had been enacted solely to mollify the Jammu's agitating student community. The 1969 Act, which is in force even today, provides for admission in the universities on a regional basis (Ibid., PP. 20-21).

Developmental Funds: Invidious Distinction Between Kashmir and Jammu The development of Jammu province has been prevented by inadequate funds allotted to it. For example, in the 8th five-year plan (19921997), 9th five-year plan (1997-2002),


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10th five-year plan (2002-2007) and 11th crore, 58.01 crore, 109.85 crore and 518.88 crore, respectively; and power five-year plan (2007-2012) Jammu's 83.09 crore, respectively; sewerage 775.12 crore, 85.41 crore, 1731.43 share in such sectors as agriculture was 6.81 crore, 14.61 crore, 71.42 crore and crore and 4918.17 crore, respectively. A single reference to the sales tax Rs 57.61 crore, 147.31 crore, 270.49 35.67 crore, respectively; drainage realized from Kashmir and Jammu crore and 337.56 crore, respectively; 47.53 crore, 64.96 crore, 75.41 crore between 1975 and 2007 would also be in irrigation 91.14 crore, 112.79 crore, and 1091.61 crore, respectively; order. The Government realized Rs 267.76 crore and 282.04 crore, housing and urban development 45.23 2474.802 crores from Jammu and Rs respectively; roads and buildings 144.2 crore, 93.02 crore, 162.52 crore and 1075.29 crores from crore, 29.38 crore, 730.93 JAMMU KASHMIR Kashmir (J&K Planning crore and 1229.24 crore, 5761 104.5 FYP8 Department papers). respectively; health 123.92 Agriculture 147.31 253.17 FYP9 But the story of crore, 226.07 crore, 330.32 270.49 380.29 FYP10 Jammu's complaint that crore and 510.81 crore, 337.56 519.41 FYP11 the State Government, in respectively; tourism 15.21 91.14 136.64 FYP8 pursuit of its political and crore, 34.99 crore, 47.17 Irrigation 112.79 210.05 FYP9 economic policies, has all crore and 36.29 crore, 267.76 446.72 FYP10 long been directed by the respectively; sewerage 2.92 282.54 365.35 FYP11 interests of the Valley does crore, 6.26 crore, 30.61 114.2 247.22 FYP8 not end here. Official data crore and 11.54 crore, Roads & Buildings 29.38 403.67 FYP9 on the tourism respectively; drainage 730.93 751.03 FYP10 development, educational 20.37 crore, 27.84 crore, 1229.24 1229.24 FYP11 institutions, healthcare 32.31 crore and 67.75 123.92 135.34 FYP8 Health centers, schemes of public crore, respectively; housing 226.07 274.45 FYP9 utility, canals and bridges and urban development 330.32 390.25 FYP10 and so on all indicate 19.38 crore, 39.87 crore, 510.81 819.22 FYP11 colossal regional 69.65 crore and 279.4 15.21 34.39 FYP8 Tourism disparities. crore, respectively; and 34.99 58.01 FYP9 The ruling coalition power 516.75 crore, 56.94 47.17 109.85 FYP10 would do well to take crore, 1154.3 crore and 36.29 83.09 FYP11 cognizance of the 3278.78 crore, respectively. Sewerage 2.92 6.81 FYP8 complaints of the people of In contrast, the share of 6.26 14.61 FYP9 Jammu and rectify the Kashmir in such vital sectors 30.61 71.42 FYP10 11.54 35.67 FYP11 disparities, which are as agriculture was 104.5 indeed very glaring by any crore, 253.17 crore, 380.29 Drainage 20.37 45.53 FYP8 standard. Not to do so or to crore and 519.41 crore, 27.84 64.96 FYP9 32.31 75.41 FYP10 continue to perpetrate respectively; irrigation 67.75 109.61 FYP11 more injustice on them 136.64 crore, 210.05 crore, would be to hasten the 466.72 crore and 365.35 Housing & Urban Dev 19.38 45.23 FYP8 39.87 93.02 FYP9 process of the state's crore, respectively; roads 69.65 162.52 FYP10 disintegration. The and buildings 247.22 crore, 27.94 518.88 FYP11 authorities could start with 403.67 crore, 751.03 crore 516.75 775.12 FYP8 opening the Central a n d 1 2 2 9 . 2 4 c r o r e , Power 56.94 85.41 FYP9 University in Jammu and respectively; health 135.34 1154 1731.43 FYP10 make it loud and clear that crore, 274.45 crore, 390.25 3278.78 4918.17 FYP11 it would not ban the intercrore and 819.22 crore, All figures in Rupees Crore, based on Five Year Plan Fundings district recruitment. respectively; tourism 34.39

Epilogue Ă˜ 29 Ă— October 2009


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Discrimination The Symptoms in our DNA

Passing on from one generation to other, the discrimination story is perhaps the most popular discourse in Jammu region. The most interesting aspect of this discourse is, however, that as much Jammu complaints against Kashmir as much is the City blamed by the peripheral districts of centralizing politics and economy. It would have been far better for all of us in Jammu if we had sincerely deliberated over this issue as to, whether discrimination with Jammu is the 'be all and end all' for our miseries or is there something more to it.

I

ANMOL SHARMA Author is a practising lawyer at J&K High Court and a dispassionate observer and commentator of trends in politics and society (anmol.sharma@epilougue.in)

t would not be like going too over board to say, that alongwith the developmental race of Jammu region run on narrow tracks of our country's resources, the theorm of “discrimination” has passed like an invisible baton from one generation to another. This sentiment has been passed like any other 'social value' or 'sanskar' present in the DNA, and even a school going kid nods his head in agreement when his\her parents etc chitchat over the issue. It may be because the customary master-slave relationship maintained with impunity by the ruthless rulers of Dogra-Dynasty has now been upset and the clichéd 'Kashmiri Lola' has somehow or the other successfully managed to turn the tables on his careless 'hazoor'. Although, it is beside the point and might bring out many worms from the can, but nevertheless it is just a 'mouse click' or a 'distance between your book seller' away to become conscious of the level of barbarity perpetrated by us on a Kashmiri in the good old days of the 'Maharaj Bhadur'. Now, a contemporary Jammuite has to deal with a Kashmiri who is far wealthier than him, has gone to a better engineering college, speaks fantastic

Epilogue Ø 30 × October 2009

English and over and above has a mind boggling house at Hyderpora, Srinagar whereas previous generation of the same Dogra had grown up cracking jokes on the poor crony Kashmiri hatoh's running nose and smelly clothes. Apart from that, it would have been far better for all of us in Jammu if we had sincerely deliberated over this issue as to, whether discrimination with Jammu is the 'be all and end all' for our miseries or is there something more to it. The common jingle, like discrimination with Jammu or Kashmiri being a blue eyed boy of Delhi are definitely over played and is a quite over simplification of the entire affair. Those who buttress this concept of discrimination ignore or do not consider the circumstances in their proper perspective. It is very convenient to rubbish off the real enemy within when an insignificant imposter is thought of as being standing in front. It is a naked truth that Jammu has traditionally been infamous for its intra as well as intercaste rivalry. Jammu per se is a broken home. Broken home in the sense that at outer level they are at odds with people from other caste and at inner level they are quarrelling amongst themselves.


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At any social gathering one is tacitly asked to state his name i.e., with his surname or if while introducing it's specially mentioned that he is also from our caste like 'ae bi sada raja pra ai' or 'ae sada he muda hai' etc, then it is expected that he will get a preferential treatment for sure. Is it not? Is this kind of thing not happening in Jammu? Is it not a common allegation here that a Rajput officer or a Brahmin Officer will sacrifice merit/right and generally side with his subordinate if he also shares his surname? The lobbies which have evolved over the time in the shape of 'Sabhas' la Brahmin Sabha, Rajput Sabha, Mahajan Sabha etc are signifying what? The amount of influence they wield on public-political level acting analogous like a pressure group is not hidden from anybody. Their primary covert purpose is to support and push their own agenda and people at the socio-political scene. Although for all practical purposes it means pushing a person who is not competent at all. Who in turn will also walk the same road and facilitate the person from his caste only. If we examine minutely the personal antecedents of ours, then far bitterer picture surfaces, as almost every body you talk to, may be like your friend or an acquaintance who has an appalling story to tell as far as his uncle or for that matter his brother is concerned. We as a community have stooped so low that we cannot get along even with our own brother or father's brother. Almost 80 or 90% of people that I know are not on talking terms with their real uncles or brothers. The kind of 'Sharika pan' paralyzing our society and rampantly going on is bone-chilling reflecting in the number of court cases being fought between families. What is meant to say here is that the penchant habit of favoring a person

JAMMU: Casualty of “discrimination” or a working example of “schadenfreude”

The lobbies which have evolved over the time in the shape of 'Sabhas' la Brahmin Sabha, Rajput Sabha, Mahajan Sabha etc are signifying what? The amount of influence they wield on public-political level acting analogous like a pressure group is not hidden from anybody. Their primary covert purpose is to support and push their own agenda and people at the socio-political scene

of his own caste and isolating his own Dogra brother of another caste who may be of higher merit is a far serious and more damaging kind of discrimination than a circumstance where a Kashmiri will go an extra mile to help his own Kashmiri brother over a chap from Jammu. After all we cannot blame a Kashmiri for helping another Kashmiri, whereas we do not do this at all. Jammu

Epilogue Ø 31 × October 2009

has suffered primarily because of this propensity. We are witnessing stagnation only because our infighting has made the cat fatter. In the corridors of Jammu secretariat there are many stories rampant where we are guilty of making each others file disappear from the shelves of the clerks, in 'if I do not get it you won't get it too' disgusting mentality. On the other hand Kashmiri may be, because of their insecurity of living in a Hindu India have psychologically evolved into a magnanimous protective society. One of my Kashmiri friends stayed here at Jammu for four years for his education with his second cousins family, whereas I or any person from Jammu cannot even dare to think like that. Staying for more than a day might make the Dogra-hostess panic resulting in nervous breakdown. It is also worth mentioning here that all the Kashmiri guys without exception doing law with me were very hardworking and it came as a shock to them when they saw us misbehaving with our teachers. Even I regret being aggressive with one member of our college staff but don't remember any Kashmiri guy ever being impolite. Kashmiri has now started exerting himself more academically and


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The case of Amarnath Land row is a glaring point in this issue. We were totally out classed, out matched in the debates by savvy Kashmiri leaders, which were aired on the national TV Channels. We did not even have one good speaker who could out smart them in English, what we could manage was 'Khajuria Sahib' who spoke in Dogri accent and that too in his trademark cheap and derogatory tone. He was our (mis) representative before the whole world, was not worth the show and then how could we lament later that we were not given proper chance/footage by the TV walas although they are not very inclined to read English literature but they are reading the Holy Quran, one of the best repositories of wisdom, the revolutionary poets like Iqbal etc. But on the other hand we have no taste for reading good books which espouse wisdom, world-craft etc. The touch we have as far as reading is concerned might be the average 'Daily Excelsior' and this mediocrity reflects directly in the way we think, rationalize situations and our overall smartness. The case of Amarnath Land row is a

glaring point in this issue. We were totally out classed, out matched in the debates by savvy Kashmiri leaders, which were aired on the national TV Channels. We did not even have one good speaker who could out smart them in English, what we could manage was 'Khajuria Sahib' who spoke in Dogri accent and that too in his trademark cheap and derogatory tone. He was our (mis) representative before the whole world, was not worth the show and then how could we lament later that we were not given proper chance/footage by the TV walas. The biggest disease from which people of Jammu are suffering is in the shape treachery coupled with the symptoms of schadenfreude and that can be gauged from the fact that the person who fought for our land row cause, to the best of his ability has now been rendered a stooge of a comic theater. Many of his own lawyer colleagues are ridiculing and making fun of him at his back. So, one is reminded of one article published in 'New York Times' in the year 2002 which cited a

The biggest disease from which people of Jammu are suffering is in the shape treachery coupled with the symptoms of schadenfreude and that can be gauged from the fact that the person who fought for our land row cause, to the best of his ability has now been rendered a stooge of a comic theater

Epilogue Ø 32 × October 2009

number of scientific studies of schadenfreude, these authors defined the term as "delighting in others' misfortune." Many of such studies were based on social comparison theory, the idea that when people around us have bad luck, we look better to ourselves. Other researchers found that people with low self-esteem are more likely to feel schadenfreude than are people who have high self-esteem. Also in a 1991 episode of The Simpsons “When Flanders Failed”, Lisa asks Homer if he's ever heard of schadenfreude after he expresses delight that Ned Flanders' business is failing. Defining it for him, she says, "It's a German term for "shameful joy", taking pleasure in the suffering\failure of others. On one day he is christened as the new age 'Giridhari Lal Dogra' and on another we have the shameless audacity to label him as an opportunist with a sarcastic grin on our faces. People of great nations do not act and behave like that; they have strong will power and have will to go on ahead no matter how hard the world hits them. People of Jammu instead of admitting to their own shortcomings should not blame every thing on a distant stranger residing in Kashmir like the way Michael Caine of 'Blame it on Rio' movie blamed falling for his best friend's daughter on the promiscuous milieu of Brazil. It would be good inspiration for us if we look at the way Israelis have transformed themselves from being temporary settlers not so long ago to now being one of the best in the field of military, fighter pilots and state craft. We need to accept that internally we are a vertically split society and start undoing our cold blooded caste wars.


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THE LIMITS OF DUGGAR-DESH

People, Politics and Leaders Jammu is the most heterogeneous and multicultural region in context to any physically quantified dynamic ranging from religion, caste, dialect, to culture. There is an old saying in this regard that both environment and language over here changes after few miles. Talking of Jammu province we can say that its demographic profile is heterogeneous with districts like Jammu-Kathua being Hindu dominated, Udhumpur-Doda showing mixed trends of having both Hindu Muslim community in sizeable proportions, and Rajouri-Poonch being Muslim dominated. The so called Dogra identity if exists may be said to be visible in what is known as 'Duggar-Desh' i.e. Jammu-Kathua region, or more appropriately now Jammu-KathuaSamba region. Jammu could not evolve a mass based politics exclusive in its territory the way Kashmir or lately to some extent Ladakh could be said to have evolved so.

U

VIVEYATA SHARMA Author is a scholar of Political Science, currently on a teaching assignment.

ntil recently, the one issue that could mobilize people in any little way was that of inclusion of Dogri language in eighth schedule. It was after fifty-nine years of struggle that Dogri finally got the recognition which the people have wanted for it or more correctly what the civil society and elites have wanted. On a deeper analysis one can say that even this issue was not having such mass support which it should have and the inclusion of the language in the eighth schedule was not totally because of some struggle movement if there was any. First, of all what so ever was being demanded was asked by a little chunk of elites and interest groups, and secondly the main thrust on the issue came because a language like Bodo that is patronized by only hundred thousands of people was given priority over Dogri by the central government. The reason for lack of common people's enthusiasm and overt support to the movement becomes evident if one tries to find as to what does the inclusion of Dogri in eighth

Epilogue Ă˜ 33 Ă— October 2009


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schedule means? It means that: Aspirants can write UPSC exams in Dogri; In Parliament, one can ask questions in Dogri; Financial benefits will be available for promotion of Dogri language and Dogri will get its due space in Doordarshan. Thus, as becomes evident from above that how can a common man be mobilized on these issues? It is for sure that he will be benefited in no way by all these privileges in his real practical life. It is only Dogri experts and literates up to the required level who will reap the maximum benefits and that is the reason they were supporting the cause with such zeal. One thing that this inclusion served was that it signifies the emotional satisfaction for several lakh

One reason which obviously comes into mind for lack of people participation and mobilization on political issues is political illiteracy and ignorance of people. People in Jammu region and more specifically in Dogra belt are not that politically literate and aware and are in such professions viz. farmers who do not have direct dependence upon formal political structures and processes. These people are so engrossed in their daily needs and requirements that they have no time to spend on giving a thought to political issues and problems which for them is a leisure activity in which they indulge in once a while. Dogri speaking people. This however, is not enough to articulate and mobilize people who don't even know what eighth schedule is all about, forget it

Epilogue Ă˜ 34 Ă— October 2009

benefits, if any. One reason which obviously comes into mind for lack of people participation and mobilization on political issues is political illiteracy and ignorance of people. People in Jammu region and more specifically in Dogra belt are not that politically literate and aware and are in such professions viz. farmers who do not have direct dependence upon formal political structures and processes. These people are so engrossed in their daily needs and requirements that they have no time to spend on giving a thought to political issues and problems which for them is a leisure activity in which they indulge in once a while. Another factor which is important in this context is the lack of efficient and dynamic leadership. Jammu cannot boast of a leader like Sheikh Abdullah. There is not even a single leader of Jammu of such stature and personality that can legitimize politics and make it a perpetual process. With the coming of democratic process and modernization phenomena, elections and parties came to the fore front. But to the disappointment of people no party and


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no leader could claim the support and loyalty of masses in Jammu. Thus, Jammu became only an instrument to form government by acquiring required number of seats to fulfill the criteria which has a huge share of the valley. People over here vote on party and parochial lines. They are moved by caste, religion and gender more rather than basic and fundamental issues. Leaders have not been able to bind the people together by cultivating a feeling of oneness and unity, so people look at political issues from individual level and are thus unable to influence or make their concerns visible at decision making level. Political parties whether national or regional seem to be at similar level of alienation. No political party has such agenda for the region that can mobilize the region. BJP until recently was talking only of abolition of article 370. Now what a layman can derive out of it that is something meaningful is as ambiguous as the article itself. Congress talked of discrimination against the Jammu region, failure of the government to set up a finance commission for allocation of funds among three regions of J&K on equitable basis, till the time it was in opposition. Regional parties generally talk of separate state status for Jammu. All these demands depict more of political aspirations and less of people's aspirations of the region. The politics of J&K and specifically of Jammu is marked by a culture allegation and counter allegation. On the one hand politicized interest groups and parties from Jammu allege government of ignoring Jammu and favoring Kashmir over it in every respect of resource distribution and utilization. Some of these complaints are age old while other keep on adding this long list

from time to time. One of the recent plights of the people is the issue of increase in number of assembly seats. If the proposed plan is accepted it will result in 42 seats instead of present 37 in Jammu, and 56 instead of 46 in Kashmir. (this proposal was mooted by

Jammu cannot boast of a leader like Sheikh Abdullah. There is not even a single leader of Jammu of such stature and personality that can legitimize politics and make it a perpetual process. With the coming of democratic process and modernization phenomena, elections and parties came to the fore front. But to the disappointment of people no party and no leader could claim the support and loyalty of masses in Jammu. Thus, Jammu became only an instrument to form government by acquiring required number of seats to fulfill the criteria which has a huge share of the valley Ghulam Nabi Azad's cabinet in 2006 and shelved by himself before he demitted office in 2008). The voices are being raised that while bringing about any hike government should consider the population of the region rather than any other formulae. Jammu has more

Epilogue Ă˜ 35 Ă— October 2009

population numerically so it is Jammu who should have more seat share. Other recent issue is that of implementation of Wazir Commission report and creation of eight new districts. The government is boasting that it has continued with its promised non-discriminatory policy by providing both Jammu and Kashmir with four districts each. However, some people are of the view that government can not provide Jammu with any privilege without appeasing Kashmir on its own, since there was no demand of new districts from Kashmir. Others say that four new districts in Jammu do not cater to the requirements and the demand for providing district status to Sunderbani and Billawar have been ignored. Besides there is sorrow amongst such concerned areas of region who complain that they have not received due attention, and funds, as announced by both the state and centre government for reconstruction and rehabilitation programme in context to the devasting earthquake relief that is being chhenlised to valley. The positive implication in all this otherwise seemingly depressing discourse is the fact that one important factor that emerges out in determining the concerns and voices of people is the economic development, progress and growth. People thus somehow seem o be identifying more with their economic concerns rather than any other issue. It isn't so that there are no issues in the region, but somehow neither the people claim forcefully nor do the leaders address them with conviction. Unemployment is a huge issue but is not referred to or talked of with such vigor that is required. From a government statistics it becomes clear that out of total number of


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unemployed youth in the state, 69.5% belong to the Jammu region. Jammu is falling short of 5.55 million gallons of water daily. Similar is the case with power supply. People and leaders rather than indulging in shallow arguments should assert unitedly on some basic issues that unfortunately could not attract the attention of people and leaders. Few important issues that come to mind on a brisk thought is the delay in the Sawalkote power project, number of people living below poverty line has been gradually increasing, there has been no water resources in some of the villages since independence which is a shameful reality keeping in mind that population has been increasing and supply by water tankers is irregular imposing a severe question to the schemes like Bharat Nirman Yojna. Despite all these glaring problems and issues the question arises as to why don't people get united and raise their voices in this context and why all this alienation does not inculcate such feeling of marginalization as it does in the Valley. An important and basic reason may be stated in response to this and that is that people somehow could not identify with these issues as a common grievance and leaders could not maneuver their politics around such development issues and those who did could not deliver. Jammu elites and leaders have most of the time manipulated the politics to see themselves in power and feel satisfied after having some share in the government. Leaders have raised concerns and voices for Jammu's development and referred to catchy

words like discrimination and marginalization in context to Jammu but they forget all their words and promises once they are a part of government, whatever is the reason. Another important reason that may be

The industry sector if not booming is at least blossoming. The areas around Jammu like Samba, Vijaypur, and Kathua are fast coming up as economic hubs with big names like Berger and Cadila setting up their units over here. Jammu has comparatively balanced growth in the industry with investment in manufacturing and processing units as well. However we must keep in that, fortunately, Jammu has not to witness the turmoil and devastation that Valley has seen and lived with. A survey conducted by CCI declares that every Bandh costs about Rs. 8.50 crores loss to the trade and industry in one day in Jammu. Imagine what it would have cost Kashmir for hundreds of days of shut downs over past 20 years. listed in this context is that majority of people of the belt being talked of constitute of Business class. They, thus, are interested in their development and progressive policies rather than any other issue of basic amenities. They somehow do not depend directly on governmental

Epilogue Ă˜ 36 Ă— October 2009

machinery to cater to their requirements and mange the personal chaos. The industry sector if not booming is at least blossoming. The areas around Jammu like Samba, Vijaypur, and Kathua are fast coming up as economic hubs with big names like Berger and Cadila setting up their units over here. Jammu has comparatively balanced growth in the industry with investment in manufacturing and processing units as well. However we must keep in that, fortunately, Jammu has not to witness the turmoil and devastation that Valley has seen and lived with. A survey conducted by CCI declares that every Bandh costs about Rs. 8.50 crores loss to the trade and industry in one day in Jammu. Imagine what it would have cost Kashmir for hundreds of days of shut downs over past 20 years. It is high time that a joint effort is being put on the part of both the classes as well as the masses of the people of Jammu to create a sense of assertiveness that is emancipatory and empowering in true sense. There is no lack of prerequisites for evolving a mass based politics, what needs is conviction and will. We should do away with the culture of suspecting each and every positive step. It isn't so that we have nothing good to feel about in context to people's participation and mobilization. People are becoming aware and conscious of their rights and are now ready to talk and debate whatever is the discourse of the season which are good signals for strengthening the foundations of democracy.


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The Cost of Conflict : Between Capital Cities

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MANISHA SOBHRAJANI Author is a Delhi-based independent researcher working on the various aspects of the Kashmir conflict. (manishasobhrajani@hotmail.com)

am often asked what drew me to research in Jammu & Kashmir. I usually have a long answer for it, but the crux lies in the diversity within the so-called 'Kashmir problem'. The complexities at every step of life in J&K allow for so much to be explored (not necessarily good for those living there!), and despite several years of working in the area, I still feel I don't know enough. The Jammu-Kashmir divide does not really help to clear things. While the Valley has received a lot of international attention, aid, civil society intervention, and media coverage (justifiably so), Jammu and its adjoining areas seem to have been caught in murky regional politics. It is often said that Jammu is discriminated against, and does not receive its due share of developmental efforts - neither by the State and/or Central governments nor by the civil society. We've all heard of the latest controversy brewing in the region: about where a Central University will be set up – Jammu or Srinagar. Unfortunately, while the two capital cities remain entangled in debates, arguments, accusations, controversies and land rows, the Kashmiri conflict (at the people's level) remains largely unaddressed in inaccessible districts and villages of J&K. For example Darchiks, the last

Epilogue Ø 37 × October 2009

village en route Leh to Kargil which is under Army surveillance due to its proximity to the LoC, and which is known for the last few surviving Aryans who live there; or Tarkundi, sandwiched between Poonch and Rajouri, where 90 per cent of the village had migrated due to heavy cross-border shelling and firing, but an election booth was set up for the remaining two families which chose to stay back; or Salhotri, the last Indian village in Poonch district from where on a clear morning one can 'see' a Pakistani mosque and a Pakistani engineering college just across, but all the houses have their gates and entrances in the opposite direction because you never know when a shell might land in your courtyard! The present state of mind of an ordinary Kashmiri can be judged from this statement made by an elderly gentleman in Srinagar whose son's wedding I was attending. He said: “A Kashmiri has had to divide his heart into 4 parts – one for India, one for Pakistan, one for azaadi (freedom), and one part which is still confused and does not know what it wants…” As a keen observer and follower of the women's movement, I am particularly interested in the lives of Kashmiri women. The women's movement in India can broadly be divided into 3 segments – first, the urban feminist groups; second, the


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larger, more rural-oriented voluntary organizations; and third, the mass peasant struggles. In a place like Jammu & Kashmir - a territory torn apart by conflict - mobilization of women's rights is next to impossible. The way the issues of violation of rights of women are raised within the context of the identity politics, the concern for women does not go beyond a point. Yet, across the state, women have built platforms for peace, rebuilt communities blown apart by separatist agendas (in the case of Kashmiri Pandits), and nurtured those that have been scarred in unimaginable and innumerable ways, slowly building a

structure of 'normalcy' under the most difficult conditions. Work on conflict in the past two decades has looked at the specific implications of conflict for women. Feminist writing has attempted to understand the politics of mothers' fronts, the specific mobilizations by women to promote peace and resist conflict, the ways in which family and community locks women into inescapable custody - through non consensual marriage, the denial of choice in widowhood, and remarriage practices; the experiences of combatant women within militant movements and resistance struggles;

the relationship between the violent masculinity of the armed forces and women at contested boundaries or on the borders of nations, to cite a few concerns in the sub-continent. Most of the developmental work in and around conflicts approaches the issue from a fairly static and simplistic notion of identity. Perhaps we need to view it from notions of masculinity and femininity – separating women's issues from the rest of it - and their connections with violence or peace. But what needs to be done right away is to interact with common men and women in Kashmir, and make them feel 'involved'.

SHRI MATA VAISHNO DEVI UNIVERSITY Sub-Post Office, Katra-182320-J&K, Recognized under section 2(f) & 12(b) of the UGC Act of 1956

MBA & MBA (BE) ADMISSIONS : ACADEMIC SESSION 2010-11 (THROUGH CAT - 2009) College of Management, Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University, offers two years full time Master Degree Programs i.e. Master in Business Administration (MBA) & MBA (Business Economics), through Common Admission Test (CAT). The College shall consider CAT 2009 Score for admission to the MBA & MBA (BE) Program for the Academic Session 2010-11. Applications are invited from interested candidates who wish to apply for admission to MBA & MBA (BE) programme for Academic Session 2010-11 ELIGIBILITY : Graduation in any discipline, with at least 50% marks or equivalent CGPA (45% in case of the candidates belonging to Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Task (ST) and Differently Abled (DA) categories). Candidates appearing for the final year of bachelor’s degree/equivalent qualification examination and those who have completed degree requirements and are awaiting result can also apply. HOW TO APPLY : Prospectus and Application Form can be obtained on payment of an A/c Payee DD of Rs. 1000/-, from Public Relations Office, 15C, 2nd Extension, Opp. Bahu Plaza, Gandhi Nagar, Jammu - 180001, or from Office of the AR (A&E), SMVDU Campus, Sub-Post Office Katra - 182320, J&K India. Or the Form can be downloaded from our website www.smvdu.ac.in and can be submitted along with a DD of Rs. 1500/- drawn in favour of Registrar, SMVDU, payable at Jammu. The students, who seek admission in SMVDU, need to apply directly to the University as well. SEATS : All the seats shall be filled on the basis of merit only as per the University norms. The total number of seats for the program will be decided by the SMVD University. NOTE : (1) The College of Management of SMVD University shall use the CAT Score 2009 only for short-listin g the candidates for admission to two year full time Masters Degree Progam in Business Administration (MBA) & Masters Degree Program in Business Administration (Business Economics) for the Academic Session 2010-11; (2) IIMs have no role either in the selection process or in the conduct of the program ; (3) The decision relating to the conducting of CAT and the CAT Centers will be taken by the IIMS and will be binding on the applicants. NOTE : Besides the CAT Score, the Final Selection ofthe Candidates shal be made after considering other components of the selection process as well as the admission norms for the MBA & MBA (BE) Program by SMVD University IMPORTANT DATES Sale of CAT Vouchers by Axis Bank & Registration for CAT Starts 09/09/2009 Sale of CAT Vouchers by Axix Bank & Registration for CAT Ends 01/10/2009 CAT Test Date 28/11/2009 to 07/12/2009 CAT Result 22/01/2010 Starting date of Sale of Admission Forms for College of Management, SMVDU 05/10/2009 Last Date of sale & submission of Admission Forms for College of Management, SMVDU 20/11/2009 (till 4:00 p.m.) Sd/Registrar

No. : SMVDU/A&E/09/1906

Epilogue Ø 38 × October 2009


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Rajouri-Poonch sub-regions and case for local autonomy

T

he twin districts Poonch and Rajouri falls in Pir Panchal track of Jammu province of J&K State. This is an important mountainous region located in between the valley of Kashmir and Dogri speaking zone (between Chenab and Ravi rivers). Mr. A.S Stein, the commentator of Raj Tringani of Kalhana had defined Pir Panchal track as a region between the river Jhelum and Chenab in the southern and southwestern slopes of Pir Panchal. This region starts from the Banihal pass and comprised of Budhal, Rajouri, Kotli, Mirpur, Sudhnutti, Rawalakote and Bagh. The LOC passes through the heart of this region. Presently only two districts Poonch and Rajouri of Pir Panchal track are located on this side of LOC while Mirpur, Sudhnutti, Rawalakote and Bagh falls on the other side in POK. 123 kilometers long LOC touches the boundaries of Poonch and Rajouri districts which starts from Sunderbani block and after touching the Nowshera, Rajouri, Manjakote, Balakote, Mendhar, Poonch and Mandi block the LOC turn towards Gulmarg side from Sawjian onwards.

K.D MAINI Author, living close to LoC in Poonch, is a peace activist and acclaimed writer on history, culture and heritage of region (kdmaini123@yahoo.com)

Historical Identity As per the revenue record, the total area of Poonch-Rajouri districts is 4.61 lakh hectare while the projected population for the year 2009 is 10.27 lacs. Gujjar, Bakerwal tribes and Pahari speaking people are mostly inhabiting in these twin districts of the state. This

Epilogue Ă˜ 39 Ă— October 2009

track had never remain the part of Jammu before 1846 AD, therefore the historical background, cultural aspects, dresses, linguistic aspects, habits, life style and economic status of the people of Pir Panchal track are not resembling with that of Dogra speaking people inhabiting between the river Chanab and Ravi. Pir Panchal region had came in limelight during Mahabarta period. There is a reference of King Panchal Naresh and Panchali (Dropati) in the Mahabarta. Most of the historians are of the view that Panchal Naresh was the king of the area of foothills of Pir Panchal track. In 336 AD when Alexander the great attacked on the territory of the Porus, the King of Hazara at that time Pir Panchal track was known as Drava Abhisara (Rajouri, Poonch and Kotli). The Raja of this region had remain neutral during the war. In 10th century AD there were three important principalities known as Rajapuri (Rajouri), Loharkote (Poonch), and Kalanger (Kotli) while in the beginning of 17th century AD there were number of small principalities in this track like Budhal, Rajouri, Manjakote, Thakiala, Poonch, Sadhroon etc.. These principalities were having no link with J a m m u . H o w e v e r, a l l t h e s e principalities were dissolved in between 1819 to 1846 AD firstly by Lahore Darbar and then by Maharaja Gulab Singh. Finally in 1846 AD Poonch


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and Rajouri principalities were merged with the J&K state of Maharaja Gulab Singh in the light of Amritsar Pact of 15th March 1846 AD. Therefore, the Pir Panchal track is having its own historic background, geographic scenario, economic problems, social conditions and cultural heritage. Present setup Presently the Pir Panchal track on this side of the LOC is comprised of Poonch and Rajouri districts with one Municipal Council at Poonch, six notified area committee namely, Sunderbani, Nowshera, Thanamandi, Rajouri, Surankote and Mendhar and 563 villages. This track is located on the tail end of Jammu province. Most of the area is cut off, inaccessible and mountainous, very meager infrastructure is available. These twin districts are bounded with the main Pir Panchal range of mountains in the northern side and LOC in the southern and southwestern sides. More than 77% villages are located either in the mountainous belt of Pir Panchal or near the line of actual control. Due to its geography, locational disadvantages, existence on the line of actual control, far-far away from the power centres, negligible representation in political scenario and executive agencies had contributed a lot in the economic backwardness of the people of these two districts. The people are facing unique and distinct type of problems and miseries due to various reasons. There are various reasons of economic backwardness. Sufferings due to partition After the happenings of 1947 123kilometer LOC have been established between the heart of the Pir Panchal track. This region have been divided into two parts. The partition of the

state had not only divided the territory but also the families residing in Pir Panchal track were divided. More than 62% population of Poonch and Rajouri districts are comprised of divided families. If mother is residing on this side, the son may be located on the other side. Therefore, this unnatural division of families had given a deep wound to the people of this region which had not happened with any other part of Jammu region. 41% population of the twin districts falls in 5 kilometers long border belt. The public of this belt had suffered a lot due to continuous cross firing, shelling, internal disturbances, low intensity conflict and three battles with Pakistan during last 62 years. They have not seen a day of peace before 2005. Therefore the habitants were facing unique type of problems which had become a cause of their economic backwardness. Therefore after independence the people this region could not think about the developmental scenario for a pretty long period. Economic disparities The northern belt of the region is comprised of hilly and mountainous area of main Pir Panchal range of mountains which remains under the cover of snow for most of the months. The terrine is hilly and mountainous. The villages, habitations and households are scattered on the slopes. Due to cold climatic conditions only Kharief crop is possible in that area and only one crop is grown in 69% agriculture land holdings. The livelihood of 81% population is dependent on agriculture and allied activities. Only 12% land is having irrigation facilities. The average land holding is 1.31 hectare which is the lowest as compared to the average land holdings of the state. As per one estimate there is an irrigation potential

Epilogue Ă˜ 40 Ă— October 2009

of 21000 hectare in these twin districts but only 8600 hectare land is irrigated. No sincere efforts have been made for the proper utilization of water potential of Poonch river, Dharali nallah, nallah Hans and Sukhtoo. About 30 years back, Parnai Hydle project was taken in hand by the state government at Draba. It was expected that 49 megawatt power shall be generated apart from the irrigation of 22000 kanal land in Mendhar area, but the work was stopped in early 90s due to unknown reasons. As compared to this, hundreds of medium and large scale irrigation canals have been constructed in Jammu, Katha and Udhampur districts during this period. There is no industrial environment in Poonch-Rajouri districts. About 30 years back 60 kanal lands was purchased at Rajouri and Poonch for the establishment of industrial ventures but no important unit have come up due to the non-cooperation of bankers and financial institutions. The commercial ventures are also not satisfactory. This scenario have created lot of unemployment problem in the district. As compared to this scenario thousands of kanal land have been acquired at Jammu, Samba, Kathua and Udhampur and required funds have been provided to the unit holders apart from free lands. This discrimination have demoralized the youths of Poonch and Rajouri districts. There are 39% families in the twin districts of Poonch and Rajouri which are yet to be electrified. These houses and habitations are mostly located on border area or the slopes of the mountains. On the other hand where the power is available. The people are facing lot of problem due to irregular cuts and low voltage. There is no Power Project in these districts at present and power is imported from outside.


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FOCUS Jammu as it is!

Kalakote Thermal Project have been stopped long back. Number of time the survey of Gagarkote-Mandi project was conducted but the work have not been started at site. As compared to this number of Mega projects are being constructed in the other part of Jammu province. 31% villages of twin districts of Rajouri-Poonch are yet to be connected with roads. Even in those villages where the network is available, the conditions of the road is depleted. Number of fair whether road constructed earlier have been untrafficable in absence of up gradation. The schemes taken in hand even 30 years back have not been completed, for example the foundation stone of 52 kilometer Buffliaz-Mandi road was laid by Sheikh Mohd Abdullah in 1979 AD. It was expected that 36 villages across nallah Suran and nallah Mandi with 82000 populations shall get road linkage facilities with the construction of this road. But only 20 kilometers stretch have so far been constructed and rest of the work is still pending. Same is the condition with important road which were started for the linkage of remote areas of Thanna, Darhal, Budhal and Mendhar. On the other hand, in Jammu and surrounding district there is a good village road network. Therefore, the people feels that they are being deprived of even the linkage of road facilities. The literacy rate is 51% which is far below from the average 54% literacy rate of the state. The education system is not satisfactory, 40% schools are without playfields. 35% middle schools are without library facilities, 23% school are having acute shortage of sitting arrangement, 34% schools are having less accommodation then the requirement while 27% high and higher secondary schools are under staff. The

monitoring and supervision system is not proper due to which the students are facing lot of problems because teachers are used to leave the schools at their own will. Due to these constrains the twin districts Poonch and Rajouri could not produced IAS, IPS and IFS officers and their share in KAS, Medical and Engineering services is also very meger. There is no air link facility nor helicopter service available to the people. 23% population in PoonchRajouri districts is still without portable water supply, 78% population is without household latrines. 63% families are residing in Kachha house while 37% are residing in one room Kachha house accommodation. 47% population is still living below the poverty line. No doubt that NREGA have been introduced but the benefit of this scheme is not percolating to the deserving unskilled labourers due to various reasons including lack of supervision. Lack of representation. The representation in the Secretariat is less than 1% that to upto non-gazetted level. No officer of Poonch and Rajouri have ever been elevated to the level of Chief Secretary, DG Police, Commission Secretary. No senior officer in the secretariat belongs to Poonch-Rajouri region. The political representation is also negligible. There is no cabinet minister in the state except one Minister of State. Therefore, the problems and issues related to Poonch and Rajouri districts remain unattended. On the other hand, the administration at Rajouri and Poonch is dominated by the outsiders. The outside officers prefers to stay at Jammu and home towns. They don't bother about the proper and systematic development of the area and people. No doubt that sufficient funds remains

Epilogue Ă˜ 41 Ă— October 2009

provided under district plan but these funds have not been utilized properly at gross root level and the benefits of the schemes, works and programmes could not percolated in absence of dedications and sincerity. Same is the conditions of central sponsored schemes which have been misutilized due to lack of transparency and accountability. The general tendency of the out side officers is to keep the works, schemes and projects spill over and lingering on and in this process the possibility of misutilization of funds increased. Keeping in view this scenario once a sincere District Development Commissioner posted in this region had defined Poonch-Rajouri districts as a black hole. Whatsoever we through in this hole we could not get back. This is all due to lack of monitoring and proper supervision. The outsider officers likes to stay in their houses while the subordinate staffs get the schemes, works and programmes implemented as per their will. There is not accountability at gross root level. Minorities problem The minorities of twin districts of Poonch and Rajouri are also facing unique type of problems. Especially in Poonch district, the minority people have never been made a part of political setup at state, district, block and panchayat level by the any party. Therefore their economic conditions remain unattended. They had also suffered a lot due to militancy scenario and border problem. They were existing in 43 villages at the time of partition but now their existence is only in 09 villages. They have either migrated to abroad or shifted to Poonch town where they are facing accommodation and unemployment problem. There are about 2200 refugee families inhabiting in Poonch town. They have not been the


IN

FOCUS Jammu as it is!

right of ownership on the land allotted to them. Therefore the minority population also wants change on the patterns of autonomous councils of Leh and Kargil where the minorities are having reservations and sufficient avenues for their overall development. Need for Autonomous Councils. The above said scenario, constrains and indicators reveals the reasons for economic backwardness and worst type of developmental scenario of Poonch-Rajouri districts due to which these districts could not progress as compared to the other districts of the Jammu province. On the other hand, the people of Poonch-Rajouri remain waiting for the justice from the leadership of Jammu province. It is unfortunate that the Jammu leadership always remain confined to the problems of Jammu and surrounding districts and they have never paid any attention to address the genuine grievances of the people of Poonch-Rajouri districts. Therefore, there is a frustration and dissatisfaction among the public about the economic backwardness, poverty, unemployment and under developed areas of these districts. The people have started thinking that their urges and aspirations could not been accommodated in this type of scenario and administrative setup. They want autonomous council for Poonch and Rajouri districts so that they themselves could formulate the plans and implement the schemes with the involvement of the people. The autonomous council at district level with executive revenue and financial power on the pattern of Leh and Kargil could deliver goods for Poonch and Rajouri districts also. These autonomous councils for Poonch and Rajouri districts may comprise of Chief Executive Councilor with a status of Cabinet Minister, 05 Executive

Councilors with a status of Minister of State and 40 councilors apart from 05 seats reserved for minorities and 05 seats for scheduled tribe population. The autonomous council may formulate the developmental plan at gross root level with the involvement of local councilors, panchayat members and ultimate beneficiaries. The councilors may have at least Rs. 10 lacs as discretionary funds at their disposals for urgent needs of the community

The problems and issues related to Poonch and Rajouri districts remain unattended. On the other hand, the administration at Rajouri and Poonch is dominated by the outsiders. The outside officers prefers to stay at Jammu and home towns. They don't bother about the proper and systematic development of the area and people. while the panchayats may also have Rs. 5 lacs at their disposals for the construction of civics amenities. The executive councilors may be made responsible for supervising and monitoring of various sectors. The identification of works, programmes and schemes must be done through the panchayat members and councilors. The chief executive councilor may have the power to write the APRs of the officers so that the officers could work as per the norms and the wishes of the people. The chief executive councilor may also be empowered to revoke

Epilogue Ă˜ 42 Ă— October 2009

corrupt, lazy and inefficient officer to improve the work standard in the area. There may be a provision of employment of non-gazetted officers, officials through the council and council may have the power to transfer the officials within the districts to overall the administration. By this way, the local unemployment problem can also be over come. The power of sanctioning the works and administrative approvals may also be interested to the chief executive councilor so that the delay in starts of works could be avoided. With these measures, the autonomy concept or self-rule at district level shall be strengthened. The financial, executive and revenue powers shall be decentralized, the grievances of the people shall be reduces, the works shall be accelerated. However, the council may be the answerable to the state government and the people. The council may also be made responsible about the schemes in respect of state sector and the big works may be got routed through the council. By this way, the proper share of developmental funds shall be provided to the autonomous councils of Rajouri and Poonch and the proper utilization of funds for the genuine and need-based works shall be ensured apart from systematic distribution of funds to the level of villages, panchayats and block level. In this manner, the common people of Poonch-Rajouri districts can be uplifted and their cultural, social and economic aspirations could be fulfilled. The distinct identity of these twin districts can also be survived within the ambit of J&K state and Jammu province. The urges of the people of these remote and border districts shall be fulfilled and the people shall get the benefit of the developmental process, which have been started by the state and central government for the upliftment of the people.


C O L UMN

History

Jammu Hills: The Historical Abode of Multi-Culturalism With the formation of the Jammu and Kashmir state by the Maharaja Gulab Singh in 1846, the processes of multi-culturalism were intensified. The Maharajas from Gulab Singh to Maharaja Hari Singh worked very sincerely to facilitate the cultural exchanges among Jammu, Kashmr and Ladakh. Since Persian was one of the popular languages in terms of literary and administrative activities before the formation of Jammu and Kashmir state, Maharaja Gulab Singh gave due space to it in the state. Similarly, the Mahrarajas developed the modern means of transport and communications to strengthen cultural contacts among Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. They never united people of one cultural identity as a rival of the others

T

PROF JIGAR MOHAMMED Author is Professor of History at University of Jammu. He is associated with Epilogue as editorial Advisor on History of Jammu and Kashmir. He can be reached at jigar.mohammed@epilogue.in

he cultural diversity at regional level has been universal phenomena throughout the ages. The historical developments in the world from ancient to modern periods show that both the concepts of cooperation and conflicts existed and exist in a society of diverse culture. Not a single region of the world is homogenous in terms of cultural identity and the concept of the cultural uniformity is antinature and antihistorical development. The rise, expansion and decline of the civilisations are

Epilogue Ă˜ 43 Ă— October 2009

the historical truth. Similarly, the concepts of the dominance and multiculturism also exist in all societies throughout the historical periods. The modern Jammu region has welcomed the persons of the diverse cultures from ancient period onwards. It is well establish ed that Jammu is part of the Harrapan civilizat ion, the first civiliz ation of the Indian subcontinent. From


C O L UMN History

tribalism to the formation of state in Jammu hills, the processes of the interfaith dialogue and inclusive development dominantly engaged the people in the socio-political and economic activities. It is known that the Jammu hills were inhabited by the various tribes during the ancient and medieval periods and transhumance contributed in a significant way to the economic development in the hills. The pastoral nomadism was a free practice and its nature was to be decided by the tribes concerned. It is well established that the tribes such as the Darva, Abhisaras, Khasas, Nagas, Gujjars and Gaddis etc. were very active in the Jammu hills. Even some of the foreign tribes also came and settled in the Jammu hills. The archaeological exploration exhibits the presence of the Kushan sites in Jammu. These tribes of Jammu lived and worked in accordance with their tribal customs, tradition and beliefs. The concept of social hierarchy was not the source of the distribution of the socio-economic rights. They used their tribal identities with pride. Kalhan's Rajtarangini records some of these tribes with their sense of exercising their rights freely and not accepting dominance of other. The Darva and Abhisaras tribes are understood to have exercising and enjoying considerable socio-political power in the Jammu hills during the ancient period. Similarly, the Khasa tribe also acquired political prominence in the hills. The Rajatarangini mention the Khasas as the rulers of Rajapuri or Rajouri. It is understood that the Lohara state of Parnotsa of Punch was founded by a Khasa chief known as Nara. The Khokhars acquired political power in some Jammu hills during the 14th century. These tribes followed the

concept of the common ancestory. The concept of warriorship was based on acquisition of the armed power, not on the birth. The use of better armed

The rulers of Jammu hill states followed the concept of inclusion in terms of their attitude towards different religious identities. Though the Hindus have been in majority in most of the hill states of Jammu, the concept of majoritarianism was never practised by the ruling classes of Jammu. Inclusiveness had been core of the religious policies of the ruling classes of Jammu hills. The rulers of Jammu along with their own religious practices respected the sentiments of the Muslims equally. It is well established fact that a large number of the Sufi saints came to Jammu from Iraq, Iran and Central Asia during the period from 13th th to 19 century power was the source of the acquisition of political authority. All the tribes were free to exhibit their warrior capabilities. There was no concept of getting legitimacy of their power from any particular social group expert in the

Epilogue Ø 44 × October 2009

rituals. With establishment of the despotism, the concept of equality in terms of socio-political rights was redefined. It is an established fact that Jammu hills were divided into several principalities during the medieval period. Jammu, Akhnur, Rajouri, Punch, Bhimbhar, Cheneni, Mankot, Bhadu, Bilawar and Kishtwar etc. were the important states in terms of territory. All of these states were ruled by the Rajputs. Though the Dev or Manhas dynasty of Jammu was most powerful ruling dynasty of the hills in terms of its military strength, rulers of other states never compromised with their independent political authority. Most of these states worked collectively for the retention of their sovereignty against the external forces. It is known that in 1588-89 Raja Parasram of Jammu, Raja Pratap of Mankot, Rai Krishan Baloria of Bilawar, Raja Bhabu of Jasrota and Raja Balibhadra of Lakhanpur along with the rulers of Kangra hills challanged the Mughal forces. Though they were not successful against the Mughals, their combined efforts show that they respected the sovereignty of their neighbouring states and followed the concept of equality in the exercise of political authority. Moreover, the kings of Jammu hills were very much conscious of their dignity and cultural identity. Mughal emperor Jahangir was very much impressed with dignified manners of Raja Kunwar Singh of Kishtwar and his faith in multiculturalism. Commenting on life style of Raja Kunwar Singh Jahangir writes: “He (the Raja) is not wanting in dignity. His dress is after the Indian fashion, and he knows both the Hindi and Kashmiri languages.” It is important to mention that Raja Kunwar Singh's knowledge of


C O L UMN History

both the Hindi and Kashmiri languages attests the propagation of the concept of the pluralism by the ruling class of Jammu. He treated both the Hindi and Kashmiri language on par and established that his state was meant for the flourishment of various cultural trends. The Rajput rulers of Jammu hills respected the sentiments of the people of diverse social background of their state and also welcomed the arrival of new social trends from outside. It is well established fact that the majority of the Rajput rulers of Jammu hills belonged to the Hindu community and the Rajput rulers of Rajouri, Punch and Kishtwar accepted Islam during the medieval period. But they did not make their personal religious background as the basis of the policy formulation process. The Dev rulers of Jammu state had mostly friendly relations with the Sultans of Delhi. It is known that when t h e Tu r k i s h r u l e r S h i h a b u d d i n Muhammad Ghori attacked some parts of the Punjab and won them, the Bijay Dev (1164-1215) welcomed the arrival of Muhammad Ghori in Lahore. He sent his son and one noble to establish a bond of friendship with Muhammad Ghori. The latter was very much impressed from the political attitude of the king of Jammu and Muhammad Ghori reciprocated it lavishly. He honoured the King of Jammu with khilat and assigned the Sialkot to him in lieu of his services. Raja Mal Dev (1361-1400) maintained good relations with the Tughluq Sultan of Delhi. Similarly, the Raja of Jammu acted as an ally of the Sultan Mubarak Shah of Sayyid dynasty against the Khokhars during the 15th century. During the 16th and 17th centuries the Rajput rulers of Jammu hills established a coalition with the

Mughals. Raja Ghoghar Dev of Jammu had very good relations with Sikander Lodi (1489-1517), the Sultan of Delhi. He sent his son Alam Dev to join the services of Sikandar Lodi. The latter was very much impressed from the services of Alam Dev and honoured him with the

The Rajput rulers of Jammu hills respected the sentiments of the people of diverse social background of their state and also welcomed the arrival of new social trends from outside. It is well established fact that the majority of the Rajput rulers of Jammu hills belonged to the Hindu community and the Rajput rulers of Rajouri, Punch and Kishtwar accepted Islam during the medieval period. But they did not make their personal religious background as the basis of the policy formulation process title of Isa Khan. It is said that the relations of Alam Dev started to be called 'Isa Khania Rajputs'. When Zahiruddin Muhammad Babur (1526-30) established Mughal rule in the north India, Raja Ghoghar Dev (1500-30) of Jammu went to Delhi and paid his allegiance to the Mughal emperor. Babur recognised him as an important

Epilogue Ă˜ 45 Ă— October 2009

ally of the Mughal empire and accepted him as a powerful king of the Jammu hills. The Mughal emperor Jalaluddin Muhammad Akbar (1556-1605) started the process of making the Rajput rulers of India as the partners of the Mughal empire. His policy was well responded by the Rajput rulers of Jammu hills. They not only retained their autonomous political status intact , more importantly they also helped the Mughals against the anti-empire forces. They joined the Mughal services and worked in various parts of Mughal India as the commaders of the Mughal army. Raja Parasram Dev of Bahu not only accepted the sovereignty of the Mughal emperor Akbar, but he also provided military support to the Mughals for their territorial expansion. Raja Sangram Dev (1594-1626) rendered valuable service for the the Mughal emperor Jahangir. He also extended huge support to Jahangir in the establishment of the Mughal sovereignty in Kishtwar and suppression of anti-Mughal activities in Kashmir. Raja Hari Dev (1656-92) was a friend of the Mughal emperor Mohiuddin Muhammad Aurnagzeb Alamgir (16581707) and served the Mughals very effectively. He fought wars in Deccan as a Mughal commander. The political alliance between the Rajput rulers of Jammu and the Mughals brought huge dividends to both of them. After joining the Mughal services, the rulers of Jammu got opportunity to work in different parts of India. Thus their political role and status were widened and enhanced. Similarly, the Mughals were benefited in maintaining law and order in the Punjab hill states and Kashmir with the support ot the rulers of Jammu. These developments show that the ruling classes of Jammu hill


C O L UMN History

states welcomed both the indigenous and other political trends. The rulers of Jammu hill states followed the concept of inclusion in terms of their attitude towards different religious identities. Though the Hindus have been in majority in most of the hill states of Jammu, the concept of majoritarianism was never practised by the ruling classes of Jammu. Inclusiveness had been core of the religious policies of the ruling classes of Jammu hills. The rulers of Jammu along with their own religious practices respected the sentiments of the Muslims equally. It is well established fact that a large number of the Sufi saints came to Jammu from Iraq, Iran and Central Asia during the period from 13th to 19th century. The Sufis such as Peer Roshan Shah Wali, Pir Lakhdatta, Baba Budhan Shah , Pir Mitha, Pir Zahiri Wali Shah, Pir Shahan Shah Wali, Pir Muhabbat Ali Shah, Baba Sher Khan Pathan, also known as Sanjha Pir, Faqir Baba Faiz Bakhsh Shah Bukhari, Qutub Zaman Hazrat Baba Jiwan Shah, Panch Pir, Rah Baba and Baba Barkat Ali Shah etc came to Jammu and settled in the different areas such Jammu proper, Satwari, Akhnur, Kunjwani and Rihari. Shaikh Farid-uddin Qadri, Hazrat Muhammad Asrar-uddin, Hazrat Muahmmad Akhyar-ud-din, Shaikh Zain Alla Din, Baba Latif-ud-din Rishi and Zain-ud-din Rishi settled in Kishtwar. Baba Pir Shah Tode settled at Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir state. Mustafa or Nua Baba, Pir Baba Karam Shah, Hazrat Nadir Ali Shah Baghdadi, Pir Wali Shah settled in the different parts of modern Udhampur district. Pir Sayyid Ghulam Shah Badshah settled at Shahdara Sharif of the modern Rajouri district. Similarly, Baba Sain Lal Din settled in Rajouri.

Hazrat Nadir Ali Shah Baghdadi settled at Ram Nagar of Udhampur district. Pir Lakhdatta founded his residence at Banni (in Tahsil Basoli, district Kathua). Alla pir settled at Punch. Hazrat Kasim Shah and Hazrat Haji Muhammad Akram

Mughal emperor Jahangir was very much impressed with dignified manners of Raja Kunwar Singh of Kishtwar and his faith in multi-culturalism. Commenting on life style of Raja Kunwar Singh Jahangir writes: “He (the Raja) is not wanting in dignity. His dress is after the Indian fashion, and he knows both the Hindi and Kashmiri languages.” It is important to mention that Raja Kunwar Singh's knowledge of both the Hindi and Kashmiri languages attests the propagation of the concept of the pluralism by the ruling class of Jammu settled at Dera Mehta in Doda district and Doda proper respectively. Panch Pir settled at Jammu, Basoli, Rajouri, Purmandal and Ramnagar. Hazrat Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani settled in Punch. Several other shrines of the sufi saints exist in Punch, Rajouri, Doda, Udhampur and Jammu districts. All these Sufis received huge social support

Epilogue Ø 46 × October 2009

and propagated their teachings in the Jammu hills. The Maharajas of Jammu from Maharaja Gulab Singh onwards worked for the preservation of these shrines. It is known that Gulab Singh, as a jagirdar of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, requested the Maharaja for the grant of land to the shrine of Shah Ghulam Badshah, situated in Rajouri district. Maharaja accepted the request and granted land for the expenses of the shrine. Similarly, Maharaja Gulab Singh granted fifty Kanal lands to the shrine of Pir Wali Shah at Katra in Udhampur district. Both Maharaja Ranbir Singh (1857-85) and Maharaja Pratap Singh extended financial support and renovated a number of the sufi shrines of Jammu hills. More importantly, Jai Singh, the king of Kishtwar, accepted Islam under the influence of Sayyid Farid-ud-din Qadiri during the 17th century and received the title of Bakhtiyar Khan. Baba Jiwan Shah was very much respected by the Maharaja Pratap Singh (1885-1925) and his brother Amar Singh. It is known that Maharaja Pratap Singh extended financial support to Baba Jiwan Shah both in cash (wazifa) and kind to meet the expenses of his mystic activities. The Maharaja loved to meet the Baba. Therefore, he frequently invited the Baba to his palace. Maharaja is said to have presented a hukka and a dhoosa to the Baba during his visit to the palace. Since these Sufis propagated and practised the concept of the Unity of Being (Wahadat-ul-wajud), persons of the different social backgrounds their followers. More importantly, after the death of these Sufis their shrines started to be worshipped. People's visit to the sufi shrines on every Thursday in a week has become a popular custom in


C O L UMN History

the Jammu hills. Thus from medieval period onwards sufism has become an integral part of Jammu hills and along with other faiths it is working for social developments. The non-Muslims of Jammu respect the sufi shrines as one of their religious identities. On each Thursday these shrines are studed with the persons of diverse religious beliefs. Both the societies and states of Jammu hills accepted the presence of the multiple identities as source of the multi-dimensional development in the region and this has become unending trend. The historical changes in the hills show that socio-political and economic partnership has been the dominant feature of the cultural development in the Jammu hills. It is important to mention that almost all parts of north India faced except Jammu faced economic crisis because of the foreign invasions of Nadir Shah of Iran and Ahmad Shah Abdali of Afghanistan and agrarian crisis. But Jammu hills not only maintained the processes of development, but also became centres of employment generation for the people of the neighbouring states. George Forster, an English traveller and civil servant of the 18th century, visited Jammu and incorporated his findings pertaining to Jammu's political and social life in his account entitled Journey from Bengal to England. His findings shows that justice and economic prosperity were th the major trends of the 18 century. According to him Raja Ranjit Dev (1733-82) was a just and wise ruler. He welcomed the Kashmiri merchants belonging to Muslim community to Jammu for trade and commerce purposes. These merchants contributed very much to the economic prosperity of Jammu. Raja

Rajit Dev not only encouraged the Kashmiri merchants in economic terms, but more importantly he also established a residential colony for them, known as Mughalpur and constructed a mosque there so that Kashmiri merchants could offer prayer comfortably. George Forster also reports that Raja Ranjit Dev always tried to acquire the confidence and esteem of the Kashmiri merchants. He respected the Muslim prayer very much. Whenever he was going somewhere and heard prayer call of the Muslims he stopped his horse and did not proceed till the prayer call was over. He never entertained the fanatics and intolerant elements. According to Forster, “The Hindoos once complained to this chief (Raja Ranjit Dev), that the public wells of the town were defiled by the vessels of the Mahometans (Muslims) and desired that they might be restricted to the water of the river; but he (the Raja) abruptly dismissed the complaint, saying, that water was a pure element, designed for the general use of mankind, and could not be polluted by the touch of any class of people.” (p. 247). The mention of Forster shows that the enemies of the multiculturalism were not given space in Jammu by its head of the state. Moreover, Ranjit Dev also provided opportunities to the merchants of Punjab. Ganeshdas Badehra who wrote Rajdarshani during Maharaja Gulab Singh reign (1846-57) mention arrival of the Punjabi merchants in Jammu in th the 18 century on large scale. With the formation of the Jammu and Kashmir state by the Maharaja Gulab Singh in 1846, the processes of multi-culturalism were intensified. The Maharajas from Gulab Singh to Maharaja

Epilogue Ø 47 × October 2009

Hari Singh worked very sincerely to facilitate the cultural exchanges among Jammu, Kashmr and Ladakh. Since Persian was one of the popular languages in terms of literary and administrative activities before the formation of Jammu and Kashmir state, Maharaja Gulab Singh gave due space to it in the state. Similarly, The Mahrarajas developed the modern means of transport and communications to strengthen cultural contacts among Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. They never united people of one cultural identity as a rival of the others. One one hand they established traditional educational institutions such as Pathshalas, Maktab and Madrasas, on the other they opened modern schools and colleges. Jammu and Kashmir was the first state where Maharaja Hari Singh abolished the untouchablity. The political intensity of the multiculturalism can be estimated from the Maharaja Hari Singh's declaration that the justice was his religion. Thus historically the elements of the multi-culturalism are founded in larger number than the elements of religious and regional fanaticism in Jammu region. Some times separatist tendencies succeed in making sensation for short duration. But they are too ineffective to banish the historical trends of the multi-culturalism in Jammu regions. Both the persons of the tribal and urban backgrounds feel very much comfortable to work together and remain complementary to each other. The religious tolerance is better exhibited by the people than intolerance. Jammu region's multiculturalism is not a forcible act of one type of people, it a continunous process of the historical development.


JAMMU MUNICIPAL CORPORATION

Impact Feature A LEAF FROM HISTORY

Jammu: Where sweet is the language, sweeter are the people

A

ccording to the most popular legend, Jammu city was founded by Raja Jamboolochan in 14th century BC as he found divine power here. During one of his hunting campaigns he reached near a river (Tawi) where he saw a goat and a lion drinking water at the same place. The king was impressed and decided to set up a town after his name, Jamboo. With the passage of time the name got corrupted and became "Jammu". The city name figures in the ancient book Mahabharata. Name of Jammu city is also found in the memories of Timur. Excavation near Akhnoor provide evidences that Jammu was a part of Harappan civiliaziation. Remains of Mauryan , Kushan, and Gupta periods have also been found. Jammu had a number of tiny principalities but kingdom of Jammu always occupied a leading place. Maldev and Ranjit Dev were among the eminent rulers. Ranjit Dev ruled this kingdom from 1723-1783. His successors were weak, which ultimately brought Sikh regime to Jammu. When Maharaja Ranjit Singh was faced with a rebellion he sent Gulab Singh, a scion of Dogra family to control it. He was a descendent of Maharaja Ranjit Dev. Displaying enviable valours, he annexed whole of Jammu region to sikh kingdom. After the death of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, his successors could not keep the kingdom intact and fell pray to place intrigues, hastening its downfall. When its power was completely eroded after III war, the victorous British India Govt. demended an indemnity of 1.50 crores. Since Sikh rulers were unable to pay this amount, gulab Singh pays the Rs.75 lakhs and in exchange got territory of Kashmir and certain other areas under Treaty of Amritsar on March 16, 1846. Thus Gulab Singh integrated Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh regions in one administrative unit, with this the Dogra rule was established in the state. After Gulab Singh, Maharaja Ranbir Singh became the ruler in 1857 and ruled up to 1885. On his death Partap Singh became the ruler and presented introduced many reforms. His nephew Maharaja Hari Singh succeeded Maharaja Partap Singh in 1925 who signed the instrument of accession on October 26, 1947 in favour of Union of India. It was the British paramount lapsed; J and K became an integral part of India. He abdicated his responsibilities on June 20, 1949 and made his son Dr. Karan Singh a Regent who was the last monarch. Epilogue w 48 w October 2009


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Symbols of Rich Heritage

AMARMAHALMUSEUM

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mar mahal is a sight to behold. This grand Palace reminds one of a dreamy French castle, with slopping roofs and tall towers. It is a beautiful palace of red sand stone which stands amidst most picturesque horizons of Jammu. Beautiful green view of Shivalik hills in the North and

river Tawi below down add to the grandeur of the building once the residential palace of Raja Amar Singh. Now, open to tourists, the Amar Mahal which has been converted into a museum, houses the city's finest library of antique books and paintings. An entire series of miniatures on the epic Nal- Damyanti can be seen there in

the museum. The most spectacular possession of museum is a 120 Kg. pure gold throne on which maharaja used to sit. The throne is placed in a hexagonal room with a door opening towards the forest view of Shivalik hills and deep down Tawi river. The museum also has a library in which about 25,000 books on various subjects and disciplines have been

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preserved.

BAHU FORT

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he fort enclosing a palace was originally was originally built by Bahu Lochan, the ruler of the Bahu city. Last of all it was re-built by Maharaja Gulab Singh. It was garrisoned by Dogra army. It is also renound for historical temple of Goddess Mahakali popularly known as ' Bawe wali Maata'. The famous temple of "Bawe wali maata" is inside the Bahu fort, where every Tuesday and Sunday pilgrims throng and jostle one another to worship the Goddess. The fort is on a hilltop opposite the river Tawi. It overlooks the river flowing placidly down the Jammu city. Seeing from top of the hill one could witness a beautiful sunset and river Tawi changing colours. A little further away, on a hill top opposite the Bahu Fort, is a lovely spot overlooking the river Tawi where a temple dedicated to Mahamaya has been constructed.

DOGRA ART MUSEUM

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t is currently located in the Pink Hall of Mubarak Mandi complex. The museum houses about 800 rare and exquisite paintings from different schools of paintings - viz. Basoli, Jammu and Kangra. Gold plated bow and arrow of Mughal emperor Shah Jehan and a number of carpentry tools also make an important section of the museum. The museum also has hand written manuscripts of Shahnama and Sikendernama both in Persian. There is also a stone

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plate on which Takri script has been inscribed.

MUBARAK MANDI COMPLEX

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he oldest buildings in this palace complex date to 1824.The architecture is blend of Rajesthani, Mughal and Baroque European influences. The most

Impact Feature stunning segment is the Sheel Mahal. This complex which is present ly housing over 76 government offices and courts stands as a valuable monument associated with Dogra monarchy. The complex has a history as old as 150 years. It was a royal residence of Dogra rulers. The location of these places was carefully for having a commanding view of the

river Tawi on one side and the old city built on the hillock, on the other. The complex has halls and galleries which were used for official functions and public events. The palaces are built as a group of buildings around the courtyard. Successive Dogra rulers kept on consolidating

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Making Historical Sense of Statues

India may learn lessons from Jammu

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rom Uttar Pradesh to Maharashtra as India debates installation of memorials, the historical town of Jammu is all set to unveil statues of two national political personalities which can offer a cue to the politicians for looking down at history with a fresh approach. The new statues readying up to adore Jammu are of two political figures literally drawn from opposite poles, coming from different schools of thoughts but yet having made national contributions in their own right. If Mayawati goes full throttle installing her own and Kanshi Ram statues, the Maharashtra government draws up a multi-million plan to create a memorial of Chhatrapati Shivaji, the decision of installing in Jammu

statues of Indira Gandhi, Jay Prakash Narayan and Syama Prasad Mukherjee is not expected to have come from a single person. Reasons are very simple. It is only Congress that can think of Indira Gandhi, may be a die hard socialist to recall JP Narayan and only BJP which could have hesitantly decided to bring Syama Prasad Mukherjee's statue in Jammu. Setting a rare precedent of its kind, the Jammu Municipal Corporation under the stewardship of Mayor Kavinder Gupta has decided to, simultaneously, set up statues of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi Socialist Leader, JP Narayan and Jana Sangh founder Dr Syama Prashad Mukherjee. Kavinder's idea is visionary and

far reaching. In a Corporation strength of 72, BJP has 25 members and Congress 27. But the political correctness lies in honouring vivid ideologies. “We need to bear in mind a sense of history and not just the political ideologies or the electoral constituencies”, says Kavinder Gupta while explaining as why he mooted idea of putting up statues of three leaders drawn from different ideologies. Under Kavinder Gupta's Mayorship, Jammu Municipal Corporation appears to have applied a fair degree of wisdom in honouring the personalities of historical importance. The town celebrated its sense of immense pride when statues of the Dogra rulers were unveiled by the Mayor. “Many leaders of Jammu

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Impact Feature who enjoyed key positions in the government –at State and Center –from time to time never looked back at the history”, says Sat Pal Sharma, an octogenarian resident of Mohalla Paharian in old city. A witness to the regime of Dogra rulers, Sharma adds: “I have ideological commitments with Congress but I wish to salute Kavinder Gupta, who is a BJP leader, for honouring the Dogras by unveiling statues of warriors”. Same are the views of VK Gupta, an Engineer in Trikuta Nagar. “The younger generation had almost lost the idea of past but Kavinder Gupta has brought the history alive”.

Maharaja Hari Singh

To give Dogra warriors their due place in annals of the history , the Mayor Jammu Municipal Corporation Kavinder Gupta unveiled the Dogra Shaurya Samarak near Vaid Mandir at Ambphalla on February 19, 2009. The memorial was installed by JMC in a glittering ceremony attended among others by BJP Legislative Party leader, Prof Chaman Lal Gupta, Commissioner JMC, Mubarak Singh, Ex MLC, Maj Gen Goverdhan Singh Jamwal, VHP leader, Dharni Dhar Sharma, president Dogra Brahman Sabha, Dev Raj Baru, secretary BJP, Yudhvir Sethi, Corporators of JMC and officers of the Corporation.

1895 - 1961

On February 17, 2009 the statue of last Dogra ruler of Jammu and Kashmir State, Maharaja Hari Singh was unveiled at Bahu-e-Fort Chowk by Mayor Kavinder Gupta. This was for the first time after the independence that the statue of Maharaja Hari Singh was installed in the State. The function was attended among others by former ADC of Maharaja Hari Singh, Capt Dewan Singh.

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Speaking on the occasion, Kavinder Gupta said that it was his endeavour that Dogra Shaurya Samarak is installed in Jammu in memory of all those Dogra warriors who laid down their lives since the independence movement to present turmoil in the State. He said though installation of the Samarak has become a reality today but it could have not been possible without the efforts of the Corporators and staff of JMC. He, while congratulating the Jammuites on the occasion said the main objective of installing this Samarak was that our progeny should know about our heroes who sacrificed themselves for securing our future. Earlier on February 17, the statue of former ruler of Jammu and Kashmir State, Maharaja Hari Singh was unveiled at Bahu-e-Fort Chowk by Kavinder Gupta. This is for the first time after the independence that the statue of Maharaja Hari Singh was installed in the State. The function was attended by former ADC of Maharaja Hari Singh, Capt (retd) Dewan Singh, president Amar Kshatriya Rajput Sabha, Narayan Singh, president Dogra Brahman Sabha, Dev Raj Baru, BJP national executive member, Dr Nirmal Singh, BJP secretary, Yudhvir Sethi, corporators and staff members of JMC.

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Jammu will soon have two new statues –one of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and other of Jana Sangh founder Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee. When leaders in many parts of country are fighting ideological battles over statues, here is a decision that reflects statesmanship. It sounds strange but the fact is that idea of both statues is coming from a single mind –that of JMC Mayor Kavinder Gupta Kavinder Gupta said that the ancestors of Dogras have made a lot of contribution for the State and they deserve to be given due respect. He also announced that the JMC Sabha Ghar will also be named after the great Dogra ruler

and efforts will be made to bring out a calendar on the name of Maharaja next year. The JMC Mayor lauded the role of Corporators who donated Rs one lakh each for the construction of the statue and he also felicitated the Brij Paul Anand sculptor and Executive Engineer, JMC Piyaray Mohan on the occasion. Kavinder Gupta has also got another statue of Maharaja Hari Singh at installed at Hari Singh Bridge near Jammu Press Club. “Maharaja was the owner of the State but he met injustice through the hands of Government of India and the Government wanted that his name be omitted from the history”, says Kavinder Gupta. He said Maharaja, who took a bold step in making accession of J&K with India deserves all respect.

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Capt Dewan Singh, Narayan Singh and Dev Raj Baru while lauding the JMC and its Mayor, Kavinder Gupta for installing the statue of Maharaja also highlighted his contributions. They, while paying rich tributes to Maharaja Hari Singh recalled his services in freedom Movement of India. They said Maharaja was a great social reformer. The programme was comp e e r e d b y Corporator Pawan Singh. So, have the Jammu Municipal Corporation overlooked Sheikh M o h a m m a d Abdullah? Not really. “From Universities to Bridges, many things are named after Sheikh Saheb”, says Kavinder as he adds, “Sheikh and Maharaja have their own places in history and none can be overlooked”.

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JMC As It Is

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Census: Jammu Urban 1981 : 334580 1991 : 492569 2001 : 698725 2011 : 1067581 2021 : 1571693

lections to the Jammu Munici-pal Corporation were held in January 2005 after a gap of nearly a quarter century. The Municipality of State of Jammu and Kashmir was established after the reforms under taken by Lord Rippan in the first quarter of 19th Century. The development of Modern Municipal Committees of the State was initiated by First Municipal Act of 1886 A.D. followed by amended act of 1889. Under this Act two Municipalities of J a m m u a n d Srinagar were established for the first time. J a m m u Municipality was first constituted in

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Phagun 1942 Bk(March 1886 A.D.). In 1893 A.D a separate department known as Municipal Administration and Jails was setup The Provision of elective element in the Municipalities was introduced in the Year 1930. this was done with the enactment of Jammu and Kashmir regulation 1913. Next step towards the development of Municipality in the state was the passage of J & K Municipal Act 1941. A new regulation placed the Municipalities under the charge of Minister and they are provided with paid President and other staff like

Impact Feature For an adequate civic programme Jammu Municipal Corporation is bound to undertake following services based on ascertained needs: Ø Public health Ø Public Works Service Ø Public Safety Service Ø City Planning Ø Public Utilities Ø Parks and Green Patches Ø Erecting remunerative assets Ø Public charities to help destitute and other philanthropic NGO's Ø Slum improvement schemes Ø Maternity and infant welfare schemes Ø Maintenance of vital statistics Ø Eradicating menace of stray cattle

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Secretary, Health Officer, Revenue Officer etc. In the 51st year of Republic of India the State Legislature passed the J & K Municipal Corporation Act 2000 for the capital cities of Jammu and Srinagar which got the Status of Jammu Municipal Corporation vide SRO 46 dated 18/2/2003. Subsequently the limits of Jammu Municipal Corporation was extended from 32 sq. km to 112 sq. km vide SRO 291 dated 5/9/2003. The Old City comprising of 23 wards, was divided into 48 wards and 23 new wards were added thus raising the total number of wards 71, with the upgradation to the Status of Jammu Municipal Corporation the city has been

Impact Feature KEY PROJECTS UNDERWAY Rehabilitation of slum Dwellers of Rajiv Nagar at Sunjwan (608 units) PROJECT COST: 14.24 crores A chunk of 100 kanal state land at Sunjwan has been earmarked for JMC Possession being taken and remaining blocks, being started shortly STATUS: Approved work under execution for 208 units at Sunjwan. Works in progress (13 blocks in progress) Amount of Rs. 2.37 lacs has been released and spent Rehabilitation of Slum Dwellers of Bhagwati Nagar Kushat Ashram (86 Units) PROJECT COST: 1.43 Crores STATUS: Approved Work allotted Rehabilitation of Slum Dwellers at various location of Jammu City. 811 units in Situ locations, covering 21 clusters PROJECT COST: 33.41 Crores STATUS: Approved Biometric Survey has been done by JC (A), JMC. Sewerage System for Jammu City PROJECT COST: Rs 129 Crores STATUS: Under execution by UEED PROJECTS IN PIPELINE Construction and upgradation of lanes and drains in Municipal area under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission PROJECT COST: 213.00 Crores Provision of of social amenities Burial grounds, crematorium, Cremation grounds cemeteries PROJECT COST: Rs 6.29 Crores Integrated Low Cost sanitation scheme PROJECT COST: 23.24 Crores

Mayor Kavinder Gupta and Commissioner Mubarak Singh during a meeting.

Affordable Housing in Partnership 800 units for LIG/EWS PROJECT COST: 36.00 Crores

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divided into 71 wards. Duly elected Jammu Municipal Council was superseded by the Government in 1960, 1975 and lastly 1983. Since Independence the Elections of Jammu Municipality have taken place four times only i.e., 1956, 1972, 1980 and 2005. The 2005 elections were hotly contested but they threw a hung house with no party getting a clear majority. In the House of 71, the Congress bagged 27 seats followed by BJP which got 25 seats. National Conference won six seats, the Peoples Democratic Party two, Shiv Sena and Bahujan Samaj Party one each while nine seats went to the independents. Prominent winners were Rani Gargi Bloeria, Manmohan Choudhary, Manmohan Singh Pinka and Tilak Raj Gupta of Congress, Kavinder Gupta, Sat Pal Grover, Suresh Jamwal, Arun Khanna and Usha Choudhary of BJP, Sanjay Mahay of Shiv Sena, Surinder Singh Shingari and Dharamvir Singh Jamwal of National Conference, Bansi Lal Gupta and Parveen Gupta independents. The BJP won seven out of 11 seats in City East while the Congress could secure only one seat. In Jammu West, BJP bagged 13 out of a total of 26 seats while the Congress could get only seven

Impact Feature PROJECTS UNDER SELF-FINANCE SCHEME Construction of Commercial Complex at Narwal over a piece of land measuring 5 kanals has been prepared. The cost of the project shall be met out through self financing basis/Own resources. The approximate cost of the Project shall be 17 Crores and likely return from the project is expected to 23 crores. Construction of multi-storey flats (Group housing scheme under affordable housing scheme) in partnership under JNNURM at Chatha over a chunk of land in 58 kanals has been prepared. The cost of the project is Rs. 36.00 Crores and the funds utilized shall be received 25% of the cost of the total project from Government of India and rest of the 75% shall be received from the beneficiaries. Solid Waste Management Project: JMC is seriously contemplating the futuristic proposal for a project of Solid Waste Management at Kot Bhalwal. A chunk of 165 kanals have already been earmarked for the purpose. Parking Lots are coming up at: Parade near Police Control Room; Sabzi Mandi Parade Ground; Behind Police Station Nowabad (Jewel Chowk); Shopping Complex at Municipal Market at Maharaja Gulab Singh Marg.

SOME INITIATIVES & ACHIEVEMENTS Building Permission Cases: The meetings of building operation controlling authority are being conducted after every 10 days. The government agencies have also been approached for paying building fee in respect of various projects. Year 2008-09 Total Cases Cleared -825 Revenue Collected -Rs. 218.50 lacs Year 2009-10 (April to August 2009) Total Cases Cleared -1242 Revenue Collected -Rs. 263.54 lacs Sanitation Drive: A drive has been launched to keep the city neat and clean. The deep drains and nallahs has been cleared so as to avoid flood like situation during rainy season on regular basis.

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seats. The Congress recorded impressive performance in Gandhi Nagar segment winning 14 out of total 24 seats. The BJP could get only 3 seats. The maximum number of independents also came from Gandhi Nagar constituency. In parts of RaipurDomana assembly segment comprising nine wards, BJP secured four seats while Congress and National Conference bagged two seats each. One independent emerged victorious. BJP candidate Ashok Singh Manhas recorded the highest victory margin of 2072 from Ward No. 61. All his rivals forfeited their deposits. Congress candidate Namrata Sharma won by the lowest margin of four votes in Ward No. 70 over her nearest BJP rival Kamlesh Jasrotia. PDP opened its account winning two seats from the City in Ward No. 2 (City East) and Ward No. 16 (City West). The winners were Zaffar Javed Khan and Kalpana Kathyal. They, however, later joined the J&K Democratic Party of Ghulam Hassan Mir whom they owed their allegiance to. The NC candidates emerged victorious in Ward Nos. 4 and 6 (City East) and Ward No. 27 (City West) besides Ward Nos. 32, 59 and 62. BSP opened its account in Ward No. 40 (Jammu West) which was won by its candidate Chaman Lal by a margin of 186 votes.

Impact Feature Year 2008-09 Clearing of Septic Tank Number 283 Revenue Collected Rs. 2,85,159/Water Supply Number 92 Revenue Collected Rs. 36,900/Year 2009-10 (April 09 to August 09) Cleaning of Septic tank Number 224 Revenue Collected Rs. 2,32,300/Water Supply Number 75 Revenue Collected Rs. 30,100/ TOTAL = RS. 5,84,459/PLANTATION DRIVE Can you imagine that no civic authority in Jammu ever undertook any plantation drive in the City. The silver lining was, however, seen only after the present Municipal Corporation under the guidance of Mayor Kavinder Gupta undertook this important task. In the monsoon earlier this year, as many as 50,000 saplings were planted at different places in city. “The plantation drive was launched by the corporation for the first time”, said Mayor Kavinder Gupta. He said that the JMC carried out plantation drive in a systematic way, in which a record maintained was initiated that includes the mortality, survival rate of plants and the number of saplings planted. “The areas were identified for the drive keeping in mind the urgencies to cope up with rising level of pollution in the city”, said MC Commissioner Mubarak Singh. The public places initially covered under the drive include municipal parks, cremation grounds, open spaces, road dividers, schools and various localities. The plantation was conducted with the assistance of the social forestry and urban forestry departments. NGOs were also involved. “We are trying to motivate principals to help us in the drive by allowing us to plant trees and saplings in schools. They can help us generate awareness among the masses about the benefits of plantation. They can also help us make the drive successful in localities adjacent to the schools”, said Mubarak Singh. The aim of the drive was to make Jammu green and clean and to maintain the ecological balance. Saplings of ornamental plants were planted in the municipal parks, shady trees at public places and trees and plants which did not require much care were planted at idle and open spaces. Anmol Rattan, a resident of Manhorma Vihar, said: “This will be a big effort of the corporation which can prove beneficial for the city”. Shavinder Saroach, a resident of Janipur, said: “The Jammu Municipal Corporation should have started the drive earlier. Now, the corporation has taken the right step and I hope it will continue the drive in future also”.

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Impact Feature

PFA DRIVES A regular drive is being carried on for ensuring the sale of wholesome milk, milk products, meat and other eatable items. The teams are being deputed on daily basis. DOOR TO COLLECTION OF GARBAGE The enhance the cleanliness and also have active participation of general public, the scheme for collection of garbage from door to door along with sanitation charge @ Rs. 50/- per month per household has been started in 7 wards with two wards of Gandhi Nagar, Shastri Nagar, two wards of Trikuta Nagar, Channi Himmat and Sainik Colony. The scheme shall also be extended to other wards of City. The scheme, when fully implemented shall generate approximately an amount of Rs. 10.00 Cr. Annually. An amount of Rs. 3.85 lacs have been collected from Door to Door during the month of July and August 2009. Helpline: Helpline Numbers opened by JMC for registering complaints and there by redressing the grievances of the masses. It has also helped the Jammu Municipal Corporation to control the unauthorized constructions. The service provided by the Corporation through Helpline is available for all days of the week between 8.00 A.m. to 11.00 p.m. Ban on Polythene use : The Jammu Municipal Corporation has implemented the Non-Bio-degradable Material (management Handling and Disposal) Act 2007 regarding the Ban on Polythene use whose notification issued vide SRO No. 122 dated 10.05.2009. The Corporation has almost eliminated the use of polythene within the Municipal limits and to make it 100% free from polythene use, a drive is being carried out on regular basis to keep check on the use of polythene. Sources of Revenue to JMU BUILSING PERMISSION FEES: The processing of granting Building Permission has been expedited for Revenue Realization. The present fee structure is as under : o Residential = Rs. 3 per Sft. o Commercial Fee = Rs. 25 per Sft. o Penalty = Rs. 100 per Sft. SANITATION FEES: JMC has started collection of Sanitation fee @ Rs. 50 per house hold month in selected areas on pilot basis which will be extended to the whole of the corporation in phased manner and it is expected that the corporation will be able to collect Rs. 10 crore per annum as there are about 2 lakh houses in the City. TRADE TAX: JMC has started collecting Trade Tax recently on 58 items as per the Government Notification dated 21 June 1991 and Vide Government Gazette Notification No. 13 dated 13 June 1996. An amount of Rs. 1.00 crore approximately is expected annually for Trade Tax. An amount of Rs. 2.50 lacs has been collected during the month of July & August 2009. SPACE SELLING: The JMC recently allotted contract, by way of open tenders, to nationally reputed outdoor advertisement agency to generate revenue of more than Rs 9 Crores in a period of five years

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Impact Feature HOME TRUTHS

City's Most Acceptable Guardian

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here are awards to be won for spotting a third-time Mayor in India. Travel across the length and breadth of country and you will not find a leader to have become Mayor of any Civic Corporation thrice in five yearterm of the highly significant urban institution of local governance. The only known example one finds of a Mayor being elected thrice anywhere in the world is the famous case of Stuart Drummond, the first directly elected Mayor of Hartlepool. When Drummond won third Mayoral election on June 5, 2009 he caught attention of the world media for this rare honour and was covered by no less than Time Magazine. Jammu too has one such story which many did not notice in its true perspective. What Drummond is to the Hertlepool town in England, Kavinder Gupta is little more to Jammu for an interesting fact –his party BJP has 25 members against 27 of Congress, 7 of National Conference and 12 others but still he has to his credit the hat-trick of occupying Mayor's office thrice. On March 5, 2005 when dynamic BJP

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leader of high political acumen and social repute Kavinder Bhushan Gupta won the Mayoral elections to head the Jammu Municipal Corporation, he set into motion a process that ultimately created a history of sorts. The first election which returned him as Mayor was perhaps the reflection of public trust he enjoyed for honest political practices and devotional approach to his social work. It goes without saying that subsequent two elections were an outright endorsement stamp on his work as City Mayor. “Despite my party being in the minority the first time I was elected in 2005 a lot of people said it was a fluke; some people said it was a stroke of genius”, says a humble Kavinder Gupta as he adds: “It was a huge achievement to be returned in 2008 with a majority. I was very, very proud of that but I think to be returned for a third time tops those two times put together”. “Being the mayor is a massive, massive honour. It is the best job in the world.” No other directly elected mayor has won a third term in office. Kavinder Gupta was first elected Mayor of Jammu Municipal Corporation on March 5, 2005 when the civic elections were held after a quarter-century delay. The Mayoral election was a tough exercise as none of the parties could muster majority in a House of 71 members in the civic elections held shortly earlier. In the final tally, the Congress had

Impact Feature recorded success in 27 wards whereas the BJP won in 25 wards, in addition to one, won by the Shiv Sena in alliance with the BJP. At time when Congress and the Peoples Democratic Party were running an alliance government in the state and their combined strength in Jammu Municipal Corporation stood at 29, but it was Kavinder Gupta, the candidate 25-member BJP, who had his way. Gupta elbowed out the Congress candidate and became the Mayor. Despite all circumstances adverse against him, arithmetic and political, it was Kavinder's charisma that worked. The opposition may have dubbed it as cross voting or whatever came convenient to them, but after two years of uninspiring experience, the Corporators of Jammu Municipal Corporation had had Kavinder Gupta back as their Mayor by way of elections on March 5, 2008. Kavinder got across the board support which was evident from the fact that he polled 37 votes against 25 members of his party in the civic corporation. His Congress rival Manmohan Singh got 34 votes. Incidentally Congress has been the ruling party in state from 2002 till date. “We have reelected Kavinder for the exceptionally good work he did and grace he brought to the Mayor's office during his previous term”, echoed many corporators on the Election Day.

Kavinder Gupta termed it a victory of an honest approach to the social work and political life. “This victory is the result of my performance as Mayor during the first term in 2005”, said a ebullient Gupta. A year later, the history was repeated third time on the same date in 2009. Setting a rare record of its kind, Kavinder Gupta became Mayor of Jammu Municipal Corporation for the third time. For the post of Mayor, the contest was between BJP's Kavinder Gupta, Congress' Rajni Bala and Independent Corporator Surinder Singh Shingari. The elections for the post of Mayor were held in two rounds as the Municipal Corporation Act states that in case of more than two candidates for the post of Mayor there should be two rounds of election and a candidate who secures less votes in the first round, gets ousted from the second round contest. The Act further states that in case any candidate reaches the number required to win the elections then he should be declared elected without going in for second round polls. In the first round, Kavinder Gupta secured 24 votes, Rajni Bala 32 and Surinder Singh Shingari 14 votes. Shingari got eliminated in the first round for securing less votes as compared to two other candidates. In the second round of polling, Kavinder emerged winner by securing 35 votes against 34 of Rajni Bala.

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Impact Feature INTERVIEW :

Making JMC Truly Democratic Alway Topped My Agenda : Kavinder What was the civic profile of Jammu City when you took over as Mayor? And what were the major challenges and how your prioritized the actions? In 2005 that was the story of problems in abundance. From civic amenities to the city residents to organizational structure of Municipal Corporation everything was in gross disarray. The democratically elected Municipal Corporation was in place after gap of a quarter century but the infrastructural and organizational profile was exactly the same as it existed in early 1980s. 23 new Municipal Wards had been added upon the re-birth of Corporation. In the period of two decades

–when last elected Corporation ceased in early 1980s and new took over in 2005 –Jammu City

had undergone a huge expansion with unprecedented population growth. In addition to the

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phenomenal growth of city's own population, there was addition of lakhs of migrants from different areas of state. But a proportionate growth in the infrastructure and a matching mechanism of delivery was missing. Therefore, the challenges of managing affairs were enormous. As far as prioritizing our actions is concerned, the process was based on the urgent needs which people would normally expect from the Municipal Corporations. Scavenging was the first major task which we took over. That was the first change we brought about in the city. People got to see neat and clean neighbourhoods, clean air to breathe and open spaces to hang out. Since the Corporation was lacking in manpower, we roped in Non-Governmental Organisations and put a group of 25 scavengers in each ward. The difference we were able to make in keeping city clean was visible in couple of months. The next big task which we took up was setting public toilets at most frequented places in different parts of the city. It does not mean that we did all work ourselves. The question was about delivery and not about how we managed things. For raising such basic facilities we mobilized funds from different

Impact Feature agencies like Economic Reconstruction Agency and engaged Non-Governmental Organisations like Sulabh to get the public toilets constructed. To cater the visitors to the town, particularly the pilgrims, we put up public drinking water facility at different places with provision of clean and hygienic water. These were little things but for lack of them people had been suffering a lot. Once these facilities were put in place, this changed the urban face of the city.

How is your way of functioning different from that of your predecessor's or the successors after first term?

After assuming charge, we started functioning in a more democratic way, decentralising our power, distributing different portfolios to different members, who independently discharge their obligations relating to their departments. Of course, they take the Mayor into confidence before taking any final decision. Any sort of decision, whether the Mayor approves or not, is discussed in regular meetings. In fact, there have not been occasions to exercise the Mayor's emergency powers. This is something quite different. I hardly take any decision alone. At the administrative level, we found that execution of work was being delayed because of a

The day when assumed the office of Mayor, I bore in my mind a principle –first and foremost –that I am Mayor of Jammu and all the people, that for me public issues are more important than the political commitments, that for me every Corporator is an honourable representative carrying huge expectations which I never see through the party lens. It was for this kind of approach than many Corporators from Congress and other parties reposed their full faith and confidence in me. No one can point out that I allowed any room for any particular party politics. All Corporators got fair deal and I got their across the board support. I have tried to promote democracy in its true essence in the Corporation and that paid its dividends.

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Approach roads, public toilets, water coolers, open spaces, scavenging, street lights, mast lights at important city intersections‌.these were little things but for lack of them people had been suffering a lot. Once these facilities were put in place, this changed the urban face of the city.

peculiar centralised system. We reorganised the whole administrative set up, delegating powers to the borough executive engineers, and gave them more financial authority. We have made the officers more responsible and answerable. Everything is audited regularly to ensure that transparency is maintained. This way, file movement is not unnecessarily delayed.

In a congested city like Jammu, open space and green patches can be seen as anyone's desire. What did you do in this direction? I can say with an enormous amount of confidence that the present corporation and my term

Impact Feature as Mayor shall always be remembered in Jammu for widening the open spaces and adding greenery to the city of temples. Restoration of historic Zanana Park to its pristine glory after more than 50 years of blatant neglect was on our initiative. Sometimes I get emotionally touched by the kind of public response on the creation of Zana Park. You name any ward and we will show you the open spaces and green patches we created. For example in Trikuta Nagar alone we spruced up seven parks. I would again say that it is not necessary that we did every work ourselves. In fact we responded to the public demands, took initiates and roped in other departments, like floriculture, to deck up parks where we were not able to do for the financial or manpower constraints.

What problems did you face and are still facing as far as your functioning is concerned? The central and state government does not take the local bodies very seriously. They do not realise that the maximum pressure is on us. We are the ones who are dealing with the everyday problems of citizens. A very high percentage of population these days is

politically and socially aware. We are the trend setters, if we are positive towards the government; it is benefited in the State. When I became Mayor, there were many irregularities that had to be done away with. There was a huge backlog and to make things work in the present scenario, it is getting increasingly difficult. We need the government's support. I cannot go against the government and do my own thing.

There is a sea of things to be done, so I cannot say that I will be satisfied. But what I can say is that I will be a little happier when, at the end of my tenure, I will have fulfilled the commitments I made to the people of the city. I have no permanent interests in hanker on as Mayor forever, but I am doing and will continue to do every possible thing to see Jammu Municipal Corporation becoming a powerful institution of local self governance. That will give me some amount of self satisfaction.

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JAMMU MUNICIPAL CORPORATION

“

Any problems at the administrative level? I am indebted to entire administration in the JMC for the support they rendered to me and helped all the way in making my initiatives successful but, see, there are some phenomenal problems we had to cope up with. Can you imagine during my tenure (this is third one) I had seven Commissioners to work with me. I owe my gratitude to each Commissioner for their cooperation but see the level of indifference the government indulges in by making frequent transfers. Once a Commissioner assumes charge, he takes a couple of months in getting control of things and the team is coaxed up. Next few months go in basic implementation and then there is the transfer order tumbling out of their fax machines. This is ridiculous. We get the next Commissioner, we start teaming up and in the meanwhile the government is seen readying up to repeat the same cycle. And then there is often undue interference of government in our working, the Ministers do their own bit of poking thus jeopardizing the autonomous character of the Municipal Corporation. Barely a month after I assumed the charge of Mayor I took up these basic issues with the then Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed who appreciated my views in entirety but his follow-up action was seen missing. In less than ten days after Ghulam Nabi Azad took over as Chief Minister in November 2006, I called on him and sought his cooperation in making Jammu Municipal Corporation fully autonomous and vibrant but again desired results were missing. In the present regime, the Deputy Chief Minister Tara Chand, who is the Minister incharge of Housing, Urban Development and Municipalities has been quite cooperative and responsive to our issues. Not only our issues but also he has a huge sense of civic responsibilities and has always shown his desire to supplement our efforts serving the city residents to their satisfaction. However, this has to go a long way. Let's see how things shape up in future.

In the present regime, the Deputy Chief Minister Tara Chand, who is the Minister incharge of Housing, Urban Development and Municipalities has been quite cooperative and responsive to our issues. Not only our issues but also he has a huge sense of civic responsibilities and has always shown his desire to supplement our efforts serving the city residents to their satisfaction. However, this has to go a long way. Let's see how things shape up in future.

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You are heading an elected Corporation of 71 members. Your party members are in minority, and the members of state's ruling party are in majority. This arithmetic gives perception of a danger of instability always lurking over your mind. What is the formula of your winning Mayoral election thrice and then having smooth terms? I am glad you asked me this question. My first victory as Mayor in 2005 was a reflection of public trust in my honest practice of politics and dedicated approach to the social issues. It was my performance as Mayor in the first year which ensured my two more victories later. You asked me about the floor arithmetic and my answer is very simple –if you deliver your responsibilities to the public satisfaction then party lines and number in the Electoral College does not matter, it is your performance that does. I think I performed well and my Corporator colleagues endorsed. The formula of my third victory as Mayor simply stems from the reason that I have tried to make every Corporator, whichever party he comes from, to feel and work like a Mayor of his own Ward. People have expectations to their elected Corporators and I have always made efforts that every Corporator is able to serve his people to the full of their

Impact Feature satisfaction and without fears of any interference. I ensured that no decision is taken without consultation of the Corporators which gave them a real sense of empowerment and dignity. The day when assumed the office of Mayor, I bore in my mind a principle –first and foremost –that I am Mayor of Jammu and all the people, that for me public issues are more important than the political commitments, that

for me every Corporator is an honourable representative carrying huge expectations which I never see through the party lens. It was for this kind of approach than many Corporators from Congress and other parties reposed their full faith and confidence in me. No one can point out that I allowed any room for any particular party politics. All Corporators got fair deal and I got their across the board support. I have tried to promote

democracy in its true essence in the Corporation and that paid its dividends.

So at what point, as Mayor of Jammu, will you be fully satisfied with what has been accomplished? You see, as Mayor of a city like Jammu, it is impossible to be satisfied at any point of time. There is a sea of things to be done, so I cannot say that I will be satisfied. But what I can say is that I will be a little happier when, at the end of my tenure, I will have fulfilled the commitments I made to the people of the city. I have no permanent interests in hanker on as Mayor forever, but I am doing and will continue to do every possible thing to see Jammu Municipal Corporation becoming a powerful institution of local self governance. That will give me some amount of self satisfaction.

You have been a man of organization in your party BJP. Do you intend going in for State and National level politics? Definitely yes! I am a BJP worker and have been ever since I came into politics. They will decide for me. If they think I can work for the people and my country I will surely go ahead. Whatever role at the state or national level the party decides for me I will prove my mettle and live upto public expectations. That is the promise.

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Impact Feature

Home to many NGOs, when Ved Mandir Complex got road

V

ed Mandir complex near Ambphalla is one of the plush addresses in the city but it did not have proper roads till Mayor Kavinder Gupta took over. Less than a couple of months he assumed the office of Mayor, Kavinder Gupta inaugurated, on April 24, 2005, approach road connecting Sri Ved Mandir complex with the main Amphalla. With the construction of this road a long pending demand of the local people was fulfilled. The

newly constructed road became all the more important with the increasing number of NGOs functioning from Ved Mandir complex. At least a dozen and half offices of NGOs are situated in the complex and are engaged in the welfare activities for the society which include Home for Aged and Infirm, Swami Vivekananda Medical Mission, Jai Kargil Jai Bharat Kosh Trust, Poorav Sainik Sewa Parisad and orphanage centre for girl child and Sewa Bharti Jammu and Kashmir.

The Ved Mandir was established in 1916 on the land gifted by Maharaja Pratap Singh to disseminate Vedic knowledge to the people, running an orphanage centre as also for the Cow protection besides undertaking other activities such as helping widows, blinds and providing medicare facilities to the needy and poor. Councillors Balwan Singh, Danish Gupta, Subash Jandial and Sat Grover appreciated the efforts of the Mayor in addressing this long pending issue.

When hope returned to a hopeless family

F

or Rama Kumari of Panjtirthi, nothing can make up for the loss of her husband Subhash Chander Raina. But after all life needs a support base for sustenance even after passing away of the loved ones. Subhash lost his life in harness while defending an antiencroachment drive launched by the Jammu Municipal Corporation in May 2008. Subhash was the only bread earner in the family and Rama was over-aged to have tried for a government service.

A day after performing last rites of Subhash, all of sudden the family realized that it was in a blind array of disappointment. However, an early morning knock at their door proved a godsend for the family. On the other side was standing JMC Mayor Kavinder Gupta with a letter of appointment for Rama Kumari in his hand. The over-aged Rama could not believe having got a secure and dignified job for having crossed over the recruitment age deadline. But Kavinder had the facts in his mind.

Therefore, the letter of appointment bearing number MCJ/Estt/s/5126-29 read: "Pending relaxation of age by the competent authority, sanction is hereby accorded to the engagement of Smt Rama Kumari wife of late Subash Chander Raina and resident of Panjtirthi, Jammu on consolidated wages of Rs 2500 per month till further orders." Rama's joy knew no bounds. Though for her the loss of husband was irreparable but a safe job in hand enlightened hopes for rest of life.

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Impact Feature

For these 124 labourers, Kavinder is messiah

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or more than 100 temporary daily labourers engaged with the Jammu Municipal Corporation the hopes had been lost and the level disappointment in life had reached a point of no return. The apprised the Mayor Kavinder Gupta of their plight who was quick to spot the loopholes and brought to the employees what was rightfully due to them but had been blocked for years due to bureaucratic red-tapeism. The Mayor asked for files and followed the process of Departmental Promotion Committee. On July 23, 2008, the Mayor Kavinder Gupta handed over the permanent orders to 124 Temporary Daily Labourers in a function held in the premises of the Corporation. The function was organised by Municipal

Employees Federation and Federation of Municipal Employees and Trade Union. The employees and union members not only lauded the Mayor but also celebrated the occasion which they described as historic for them. Amidst shouting of slogans and clapping, the Mayor handed over permanent orders to 124 Temporary Daily Labourers the decision to which was taken in the DPC of the Corporation held after a long gap. Besides TDL, the Corporation, in the DPC, also confirmed 10 daily wagers to the post of Junior Assistants after type test which was also a long pending demand. Vijay Chandel of Municipal Employees Federation said that the Mayor took keen interest in con-

verting 124 Temporary Daily Labourers to Permanent Daily Labourers. He said that Kavinder Gupta shall always be remembered for this decision. The Mayor assured to all the wings of the Corporation to redress their grievances on priority basis in near future. The Federation of the Municipal Employees and Trade Union also thanked the Mayor for fulfilling the long pending demand of the Federation. Dev Anand Gill (chairman), Ravinder Sharma (president), Raju Kumar (vice-chairman), Attar Singh and Anoop Singh (general secretary), Amarjeet Singh (senior vice-president) and other members of the Federation spoke on the occasion and lauded Kavinder Gupta's efforts

Library Chowk comes out of darkness

L

ibrary Chowk at Kachi Chhawni is one of the most important landmarks in Jammu City. However, much to the embarrassment and disappointment of the locals and onlookers, this important site remained in perpetual darkness till Mayor Kavinder Gupta and local Corporator Subhash Jandial vowed to illuminate this crossing of historical importance. On May 28, 2008, the Mayor Kavinder Gupta along with some political leaders and Corporator Subhash Jandial inaugurated the high mast light at Library Chowk. Kavinder said that Ward No 9 Corporator Subash Jandial was instrumental in getting the light installed at this busy chowk. Prior to this two such high mast lights have been installed at Masjid Chowk and Kachi Chawni Chowk on the initiative of the Corporator.

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Impact Feature

JAMMU MUNICIPAL CORPORATION

At Old Hospital Road Relief for Shopkeepers, Shoppers

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he popular Old Hospital Road in the heart of city is a hub for the shoppers but it suffered from a long chronic problem –there was toilet in the areas. Taking note of this serious facility deficit, the JMC spared a piece of land and approached the Economic Reconstruction Agency and Sulabh International for construction of modern toilet complex. The Mayor Kavinder Gupta personally supervised the work and toiled complex came up in a record time. Much to

the joy of both the shopkeepers and the shoppers, the Mayor Kavinder Gupta and Corporator Priya Sethi inaugurated Sulabh Toilets Complex at Old Hospital Road on February 3, 2009. In the inaugural ceremony, several prominent residents and social figures besides, members of Bazaar Associations were present. The complex, constructed by Sulabh International, was funded by Economic Reconstruction Agency (ERA) while, the land was

Finally, a lavatory in Ambphalla

A

ddressing yet another long pending demand of the people of Ambphalla –which houses a large number of offices, shops and residence besides other complexes, the Sulabh International completed a toilet complex in the locality which came up in a record time. Constructed at the behest of Kavinder Gupta and sustained efforts of local Corporator Balwan Singh, the Mayor inaugurated, on May 25, 2009, the complex which had separate bathrooms, toilets and urinals for males and females. The complex has distinction of having facilities for both males and females and it will be of great service to the people visiting the dental and psychiatric hospitals. Besides it will also cater to the needs of the passers by. Balwan Singh assured the people that he will continue to work with same zeal for the development of the ward and try at his level best to make it a model Ward of Jammu city. The simple but impressive inauguration function was also attended by Corporators Dinesh Gupta and N D Rajwal besides prominent local residents.

provided by JMC. The complex has separate toilets, bathrooms and urinals for males and females. The Mayor appreciated the efforts of Sulabh International for providing such facilities to the people in the city and other parts. He added that complex will cater to the needs of thousands of people who daily visit the city's busy markets. Speaking on the occasion, the shopkeepers said that coming up of toilet complex is a sign of big relief for them and the visiting shoppers.

Facilities in Dream City

A

ddressing a long pending demand, uplifting the face of Dream City Muthi, the Jammu Municipal Corporation improved civic facilities up laying a network of lanes and drains. Mayor Kavinder Gupta, accompanied by Omi Khajuria, Corporator of Ward 65, inaugurated the newly constructed lanes and drains on February 19, 2006. Gupta visited round the colony and expressed his satisfaction over the nature of work done by the organization. He assured the people that the Colony will be fully developed. He said the JMC will take up the construction of lanes, drains, supply of drinking water and electricity on priority basis. In following years the construction work was indeed taken up by the JMC to the fully satisfaction of the locals. The local residents including J L Ambardar, Brij Nath Raina appreciated the efforts of JMC, particularly the Mayor.

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Impact Feature INTERVIEW :

Transparency is Hallmark : Suraj Suraj Prakash Rakhwal is an officer of exceptional integrity and proven dedication to his work. One among the toppers in the batch when he got into the prestigious Kashmir Administrative Services (KAS), Suraj has always been handpicked for the key jobs. Until last year, he was with the then Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad manning his official residence desk. The new Secretary of Jammu Municipal Corporation says that redress of grievances in most efficient manner is what JMC is now known for Excerpts : Epilogue w 73 w October 2009


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You are a young office inspiring hope. Tell us frankly how friendly is JMC to public woes?

Impact Feature public grievances cell which address the grievances systematically as well as quickly and old system has been dispensed which was merely

Frankly speaking the JMC performs its legitimate duties in an efficient manner. However being a public organization some times the delay in performing the job viz redressal of grievances of general masses is purely procedural.

The Councillors, who represents public are Ecofriendly, however, at times a norms pressure from the public representatives is observed generally and is tied over by mitigating as well redressal of the problems projected by them in a phased manner. The post of Secretary, JMC is primarily to have overall redressal of the administrative as well other obligatory functions which are addressed by adopting majors in collaboration with the Councillors.

What are the major complaints of violations the JMC usually receive? Major complaints received in JMC pertains to sanitation and encroachments etc. However the JMC address the same within the shortest stipulated time as and when received.

What steps are being taken to reduce delays in civic administrative procedures?

How transparent is the working JMC. Have you implemented the Right to Information Act?

The JMC has adopted computerization in the organization as well has opened a website also, as such the system has become transparent in nature for dealing day to day working.

What is the entire record keeping mechanism adopted by JMC and how effective is delivery of the system? The record keeping mechanism has marginally improved due to adoption of

democratically elected body of 71 members. One can understand the kind of pressure on the officers coming in from public representatives. What role do you play in addressing their grievances?

wastage of time and energy by endorsing the grievance application to different quarters for redressal of the same.

Jammu Municipal Corporation is a

As already reported the working in JMC has become transparent by adopting rules and regulations as provided in Municipal Corporation Act, 2000. The Municipal Corporation adopts the rules and regulations to its capability to make the affairs of the Corporation transparent.

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F EATURE S

Life Stories HANDCUFFED INNOCENCE

Stories of Lost Childhood in J&K DEEPIKA THUSSOO

I

n the District Court in Jammu when I was rushing to appear before excise magistrate in November, 2008 I saw a boy, barely ten years old handcuffed being brought to court by a Policeman from the District Jail . I realized this was a blatant disregard of the law which clearly stipulates the rules for juvenile trial. Stopping them I confronted the policeman with the issue and got a rather sheepish response. He reluctantly answered, “the boy has been arrested with his father and uncle on international border. It is his date for appearing in the court. Everyone is brought before the court handcuffed, so he too is being brought handcuffed.” This was clearly a gross violation of child rights and what made the matter even graver, it was in the premises of the court, meant to uphold justice for all. The legal and journalistic aspects in me came together as I asked pointed questions to the policeman and the child and recorded the evidence which unraveled the situation. Rather than an exception, this emerged as a rule.. The policeman was quite forthcoming and said that they have been ordered to take the juvenile delinquents handcuffed to court and do the same with every young offender. This was an outright violation of the law and it was happening in a state where the where Juvenile Justice Act, 1997 stands extended. Clearly in my sincerity of purpose

and intensity of emotions, I had overstepped authority. I was called into the court which demanded my reasons for interviewing the accused and the policeman. The court grilled me on my actions at interviewing this young offender without the permission of the district judge. A little intimidated but knowing that I was on sure ground, I stated my reasons plainly. This went against the letter and the spirit of the Juvenile Justice Act. I knew that had I waited for permission, it would have been a lost chance. Such offenders are often bundled out of the court room as soon as the hearing is over and taken to the 'felons' or the district jail where these “juvenile delinquents” are kept. I openly said as much to the court deciding it was better for all the cards to be on the table. I left the court making a humble submission that such juvenile offenders should not be paraded, handcuffed. I knew I had made a point, not merely in terms of a humanitarian appeal which is demeaning to the offender but on the strength of the legal point. The judge had to acquiesce in the matter and it was a small battle won for restoring the dignity of a young boy who was on the wrong side of the law. My submission worked as I later came to know that the accused boy was being taken without the handcuffs. Sometimes the rewards of professional or social work surpass the what the standard expectation or acknowledgement. The boy spotted me

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and with a smile on his pale face just said “thankoo”. This incident raises a number of questions about the state of child rights in the militancy infested Jammu. One can take this single case as a sample which demonstrates how the children in conflict with law in the insurgency ridden Jammu are treated. Directly or indirectly due to militancy, poverty and unemployment, many children are pushed towards the crime and militancy. There is a crying need to address this issue with clarity, compassion and action. Concerned individuals and organizations need to come forward to the rescue and rehabilitation of the such children who need protection, guidance and a supportive framework to make a transition from offenders to law-abiding children caught in a society of turmoil. Particularly in conflict areas, the dynamics working to push children towards crime and militancy are exacerbated and any law or system of Juvenile Justice needs to stay focused on that rather than just treatment” of children breaking the law. The system needs to be based on the root cause and not just address the symptoms. The treatment and proceedings governing juveniles have a legal basis here in India and thus need to strictly adhered to. The issue finds prominence in international conventions setting the framework for Child Rights as well. The UN Convention on the Rights of Child


F EATURE S Life Stories

CRC contains several articles that specifically relate to the situation of children in conflict with the law. Article 12 states that children have the right to be heard in judicial proceedings affecting them, Article 37 refers to the prohibition of Torture and Deprivation of Liberty and Article 40 deals with the Administration of Juvenile Justice. The CRC goes beyond only the procedural aspects to ensure that the dignity and sense of worth of a child in such circumstances is not compromised. Article 37 clearly stresses that no child shall “be subjected to torture, cruel treatment or punishment, unlawful arrest or deprivation of liberty.” Article 40 states that a child in conflict with the law has the right to treatment, which promotes the child's sense of dignity and worth The current status of the Juvenile Justice Act, 1996 in the state is that it has been extended on the pattern of earlier central Act, which stands repealed by Children Care and Protection Act, 2000 at the Central Government level. Sadly in J&K which sorely needs a legal protective mechanism for its young offenders, the provisions of even the earlier law being adhered to are not evident. It is pertinent to note that the state government has neither ratified the new Act by the Central Government nor has it implemented the beneficiary provisions of the older Act (Jammu and Kashmir Juvenile Justice Act, 1996). The glaring lacuna in the legal provisions weighs heavily on young offenders who are being kept behind the bars along with the professional criminals which is totally against the law. They are not covered by any provisions for relief and rehabilitation and continue to languish in jails. This calls for urgent judicial intervention to bring the government to book and hold them to the provisions of the Act, to pressurize them to meet the promises of protection of child rights in the conflict-ridden state. For one young boy who was freed from the humility of a shackled court presence, there are countless others who are looking to be dealt with in a manner fitting an enlightened society. {This article has been written under the “Sanjoy Ghose Media Fellowship 2008-09-Role of Women Journalists in Areas of Conflict }

Quenching the Thirst of Uttarakhand Through Bottled Water DINESH PANT

Thanda” means …no not the popular jingle but something else, more basic here in Uttarakhand. The salubrious climes which offer a cool haven to heat and dust stricken tourists from the plains, is itself in need of some comfort. Throughout the summer heat, bottles of cold drinks and mineral water are sold in dhabas, khumtas and tiny shops in far flung towns and village bazaars, which does not seem odd at all. Except strangely the only consumers of this is not the tourists and other travelers alone. The local population is also consuming these and in vast quantities. For a people to be partaking of bottled water is something inconceivable, out of character and perhaps symptomatic of an aberration in a land known for its gurgling mountainous streams. It cannot be a statement of having arrived or a desire to show style and panache in front of the national and international tourists that is driving them. It is something more basic, simply a crying need. The summer season has been relentless and dried up many of the water reserves once famed in this region. There is just not enough water in the pipelines and those who still partake of it run the risk of getting jaundice or diarrhea. Before summer reaches its peak, all the major traditional water resources, which once used to overflow, dry up. The region which lies in the shadow of Himalayas, the origin of such mighty rivers like Ganga and Yamuna is faced with water shortage today. Two decades ago rivers, ponds and natural water resources used to very naturally fulfill the needs of the people. Today the situation is grim and the signs have been apparent for about a decade now. Underlying this is the slow but now visible forms of environmental degradation. Forested areas have shrunk, population has grown and towns have spread bringing with them the inevitable spread of the concrete jungle. Traditional sources of water, 'gadehras, streams and ponds which Uttarakhand used to abound in, have simply dried up or been cemented in this unrelenting march of 'progress'. The level of water is decreasing in the low lying areas. There is simply not enough moisture now retained in the soil. Many wells are dried out and while earlier digging a few feet underground would cause water to spring forth, now one needs to dig more than 20 feet

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F EATURE S Life Stories

. Mahesh Pandey, a social worker, says “ Many tributaries has become a nullah, whereas the levels of Yamuna, Ganges, Bhagirathi, Alaknanda, Ram Ganga and Kosi is regularly falling.” For the local communities, it is back-breaking work to fetch water, getting increasingly difficult in a compromised environment. The problem is typical of many mountainous regions. A woman spends several productive hours of her day in fetching water for cooking from farflung areas. On an average in one trip she is able to cart between 10 to 20 litres of water in canisters or earthen pots which would suffice for a medium size family plus animals. For larger families this quantity requirement would shoot up. What is important also is the distance from the source. For longer distances, the carrying capacity would reduce. All in all it is a grueling trek and very often villagers prefer to store this water for cooking and cleaning purposes, leaving the drinking water needs to be met from a more modern source, that of packaged drinking water. The government which is supposed to provide for drinking water buckles under every successive summer. Its water management is ineffective and does not have any long term programmes to address the fundamental issue. The undulating surface means that even from existing sources, water has to be transported from pipelines, sometimes lifted up as it were. According to Uttarakhand government figures, there are 950 such villages where no water could be provided without lift programme. Very often the water being brought through pipes from sources far away is polluted. In Pithoragarh, the water from 'Thuligarh', source caused nearly

80% of the population to get jaundice according to the local hospital figures. Over the years, people have organized movements to demand safe drinking water from the government. In Pithoragarh district after the dreaded illness took its toll, there has been a move to source water from a nearby water fall, Birthi. In Almora district which was dependent on the Kosi river has been experiencing a falling level of water which in view of its growing population is leading to a panic situation. Here local communities have raised the banner to demand that water be sourced from another source, Pindari glacier in Bageshwar district to meet the growing demands. But these are small battles which are sometimes resolved to the satisfaction of a

Epilogue because there is more to know

particular local community. Yet there is a big picture that is missing and this falls squarely in the ambit of governmental action. Ironically, providing of drinking water was listed as among the main priorities of the government at formation of the new state of Uttarakhand (then Uttaranchal) was c a r v e d o u t o f U t t a r Pr a d e s h . Subsequent governments have only paid lip service to this. The winners in this water-dance is clearly the cold-drink industry which has by default gained from the situation. For a region which beckons the visitor with its scenic beauty, this amounts to a gross neglect of core needs of a people for whom the bounty of nature has been bottled into a packaged commodity

Now Telling The J&K Stories

Contact ABDULLAH NEWS AGENCY, Lal Chowk, Srinagar *** RAINA NEWS AGENCY, Residency Road, Jammu *** ABC STATIONERS AND DISTRIBUTORS, Leh *** SHAHEEN NEWS AGENCY, Kargil *** CENTRAL NEWS AGENCY, New Delhi *** OXFORD BOOK STORE New Delhi, Mumbai, Calcutta, Bangalore, Chennai & Goa

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SPEC I AL

R E POR T

Society Exposure of children to online-pornography:

Implications Disastrous JAVAID RASHID

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ould you believe what Salman Rushdie says in his novel, “Shalimar the Clown”, that in cultures where sexes are artificially prevented from being together, people resort to pornography; or would you go with Steve Hirch, a pornographer and founder of a leading porn studio, who revolutionized and mainstreamed the porn industry so belligerently that even the universities like Yale University invites him for guest lectures; or would you trust, nonetheless at last, the researchers who warn us of the sleepstealing and horrible impact of exposure to pornography on humans, particularly on children and youth. To which school of thought, culture or group we belong to, we can't take recourse to denial, complacency and escapism, when any researcher or a whistle-blower warns us of the society's growing exposure to onlinesexualized explicit content, and vulnerabilities and threats associated with it. In Kashmir the increasing exposure of our youth and children to pornography and online-sexualizedviolent activities is catastrophic, having social, psychological, physiological and behavioral repercussions, which eat into the society's cohesion and integration, social health and fitness and sullies our children and youth, who

are the future adults or the future itself. Pornography: Pornography is the sexual content ranging from nudity to explicit sexual activity; combines sex and exposure of genitals with abuse or degradation in a manner that appears to induce, condone or encourage such depicted

beh avior. In the present era, internet is the main and the most widely used source of pornographic material that is easily accessible, affordable and the 'rich' source of sexual content and faultyfantasies. It is estimated that there are

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280 million online porn web-pages on internet. The powerful search-engines, connected even to mobile communication, with the millions of pornographic web-pages decrease the gap between the internet-user and porn; the internet-user finds it just seconds away. The recent increase in the number of the telecom and mobile companies operating in our Valley and the corresponding electronic exposure has made 'internetfacility' a necessary commodity, which all vie to have through USB data cards & 'photons', GPRS and broad-band connections. The youth, in particular, excessively compete to have internetfacility at hand, irrespective of their needs and requirements. How vulnerable they are to get exposed --- deliberately or unwillingly, to sexually explicit and violent content, could be guessed from a research finding that the average age of a visitor of a porn site is 12 years. Using word “porn” on a search engine th rows a t le a st 3 million pornographic web-pages to which tens of thousands are added daily. Your child is just a 'click' away from the 'evil-world of pornography'--- where immorality, lust and sensuous violence is the religion. It is the world that engulfs him,


SPEC I AL

R E POR T Society

sullies his innocence and transforms his 'real life' into violent and unnatural sexualized fantasies. He is thrown into the bottomless abyss of lust and desire where from he tries to come out only to be re-thrown again. It is catastrophic and havoc-causing to his personality, behavior and attitudes. Age-sensitivity: Moreover, the age sensitivity of children and adolescents poses new threats and vulnerabilities. The social and psychological identity, the cognitive and behavioral hypersensitivity and the perceptual and emotional inclination of children and teens is too fragile and prone to 'irregularities and mal-functions'. The stage being the transition from childhood to adulthood has corresponding essential processes and phenomena going on. The process of socialization, cognitive and mental growth, personality and emotional development are the essential features of the child developmental stages. Altering and interfering with the child's normal course of development, socialization and learning could have horrible and vile ramifications for him as a social being and for society as a whole. The exposure of children and teens to onlinepornographic content at this oversensitive, crucial and determining stage of life could potentially add innumerable malfunctions and maladies, having catastrophic consequences for the individual and society as well, at all the levels of human interactions and relations.

Impact: The impact of pornography on humans and society is complex, multifaceted and unprecedented. Keeping in view the engulfing richness of porn sites on internet, its easy accessibility and affordability and its corresponding vulnerabilities and dangers, it becomes imperative to discuss this sensitive and morally- loaded topic, particularly in the regions and societies like Kashmir. Considering the cultural and social conservatism and 'decency' of Kashmiri society, viewing pornography or any sexu-

ally explicit content is strongly disapproved. It is a taboo and an extreme form of indecency and immorality. This social prohibition and disapproval is mainly based on religious and moral grounds and not on the concern for the disastrous and sleep-stealing impact and consequences of the exposure to pornography on children and youth. No doubt, the ill-awareness, negligence or faulty information of the people and the lack of contextualized-research are the main reasons of the above fact. Thus, it

Epilogue Ă˜ 79 Ă— October 2009

becomes indispensably important to sensitize the stakeholders and throw light on the topic, giving serious thought to the issues and consequences emerging out of it, that if neglected could potentially have horrible ramifications and that could imperil our social integration, social cohesion and social health. The surfing, downloading and viewing pornographic material may seem to be a simple 'irregular and deviant' behavioral manifestation that arises out of the instinct of humans to explore their sexuality and information related to it. Wrong! It is not as simple and less-dangerous as people generally consider it. In fact, it is a monster; a tsunami; a tornado that transforms your children into sex-centered humans rather non-humans, who see, perceive and understand the language of 'sex', who distort and sexualize every relationship whether in family, in neighborhood or in streets. Havoc; tragedy is it! In the present day Kashmir almost every home or locality witnesses an e l e c t r o n i c a n d technological up-gradation that has decreased immensely the digital gap. In this scenario children and youth are more prone to stumble on the internet and get exposed to the extreme forms of online-sexualized violence and sexually explicit content. The initial unwilling exposure to pornography, very quickly changes to 'deliberate and willing' viewing and using of the adultsexual content. Surfing on search engine for homework topics or other academic & educational information


SPEC I AL

R E POR T Society

may many-a-times easily land an internet-user in this world of lust; it occupies his imagination and the scenes and images get imprinted on his mentality and perceptions. He hardly resists replicating or 'un-seeing' it, and ultimately, pornographic addiction overpowers everything else in him. Seeing and viewing pornographic material may not be that serious issue than the consequences it brings forth. The content depicts unnatural sexual activities, attitudes and behavior, based on faulty information, fantasies and sensuous violence. The children and teens generally having dominant instincts of exploring their sexuality, and consequently, in quest of seeking out related-information--- visual or text, find internet as the most easily accessible and available source. Eventually, the time comes when viewing pornography becomes a sexualized recreational activity and that evolves in them new 'fantasies' in real life, unnatural and abnormal to the basics of human relations, to the process of socialization and sexualsocialization. The derangement of the normal course of development, socialization and sexual growth, the distortion of attitudes, perceptions and personality, and the faulty and imperiling behavioral development is what he reaps ultimately. How it impacts his social, psychological, personal, emotional, physiological and behavioral identity and personality have been thoroughly brought to surface by researchers, world over. The sensitive and hyperactive nature of children makes them more prone to the negative impacts and consequences of pornographic exposure. Moreover, the incapability of children to integrate the sexually-explicit information into a healthy sexual identity worsens the scenario, having ramifications for both individual and society.

The concerns and threats that emerge out of the deliberate or unwilling exposure to pornography could be outlined as: § Normal sexual development gets interfered; encouraging early sexual activity having its own issues and concerns at different levels of human and cultural interaction. § Acceptance of 'open' sexual tastes and lifestyles and unnatural sexual orientations like homosexuality, child sex, etc § Encouraging sexual violence and crimes in family and kinship, and fostering incest (sex with-in blood relations and family), etc. § Generating dysfunctional socialization, poor social bonds, confusion, identity crisis, guilt, anxiety, trauma, addictions, emotional and behavioral instability. § Increase in risk-taking and rulebreaking behavior in children and fostering violent and rape inclinations. The excessive use of pornography encourages sexual offending, antisocial personality, etc. It strips children and youth of human-feelings and natural perceptions. § It stagnates their creativity and analytical potential & abilities, endangering their career and disturbing their life prospects and prosperity. § The exposure inhibits the development of positive social relationships skills. It adds many dysfunctions to his personality and distorts his sexual attitudes and behavior, weakening the prospects of family-building in future. § The sexual and psychological malfunctions due to extreme pornographic exposure harden his sexual excitability and weaken the sexual responsiveness (disorders like erectile dysfunctions, etc); increased tolerance toward pornographic content, and thereby requiring more

Epilogue Ø 80 × October 2009

explicit, novel or bizarre exposure to achieve the same level of interest or arousal, ultimately interferes with marital relations in future life; moreover, family, marriage and intimacy are viewed as unattractive prospects that confine their sexual freedom, etc. § The dangerous distortion and degradation of women identity and viewing women merely as sex-objects and considering sexual activity solely as a physical exercise bereft of love, intimacy and care, is a prominent dangerous impact. The impact and repercussions of the pornographic exposure on children and adolescents mentioned above, is just a tip of an iceberg. In the lack of research both at international and local level, the underpinning realities and dimensions remain unexplored. Nonetheless, what we know of it today warns us that it is in no sense an issue to be ignored. Enter an internet café, just scroll the 'history button' and see what the previous users are haunted and preoccupied with. Alarmingly, the most of the URL-addresses visited-previously link to pornographic web-pages and material. This is the case in a café where one has too little a privacy. One could imagine what would be the scenario in homes; in ones own room; in complete privacy, particularly when our valley is witnessing a technological paradigm shift and where web-browsing through GPRS-mobiles, USB-datacards, etc is at hand. In these prevailing circumstances our children and youth are getting caught in this whirlpool of immoral illusions and lust-driven activities. Observe a peer-group of children or youth in a colony, a college or a school, take note of their conversations and discussions; check their mobile storage and memory-cards and notice their behavioral responses and inclinations, you will surely be


SPEC I AL

R E POR T Society

taken aback, all- surprised, as if , they are a new mutated and transformed generation; their de-pinked cheeks reveal the bereavement of their innocence; their wandering gaze in street points out their restlessness; their eyes bereft of that innocencemingled freshness bear testimony of the pre-occupation; and their glow-less faces foretell that a tragedy is imminent, hovering over the future. This is our future; the society's future; the Kashmir's future, about to get capsized in the ocean of lust, immorality and destruction. As the research points out, male children or boys are more prone or attracted to pornographic content, and thus making them more vulnerable to its negative impact than female children or girls. Considering the dearth of research on the impact of pornographic exposure on children and youth in Kashmir, nonetheless the 'observation' reveals that the male children or boys seem to be excessively exposed and negatively impacted. Consequentially, the way our children and youth perceive and understand 'female-identity'; the way they shape their behavior and relations in family; the way they see their female-colleagues; the way they mould their sexual behavior, inclinations and attitudes; the way they regard marriage and family prospects, are some of the curious research questions. For instance, the surge in violent crime inclinations in children and adolescents is a matter of great concern. The recent Romana's killing is enough a testimony to that. The increase in violent crimes and sexual offences in our valley have diverse sociological and psychological reasons, and many of which could be traced to the excessive exposure of young generation to pornography and online- sexualized violent material in the form of 'rape videos and stories',

'incest and bestiality movies and stories' and other hardcore porn. The state of unconcern on part of the civil society and all other stakeholders is exacerbating the already-ruined state of affairs. It is good to talk about negative impact of 'unsupervised and un-controlled' exposure to satellite channels, cable or other forms of daily communication. But nobody pays heed to the issues and concerns related with the use and misuse of internet. Even our academicians, intellectuals and other professionals are resorting to escapism and denial, giving a good picture of everything to appease the 'invisibleforces'. It is tragic and shameful! Thus it is time to come to the frontline and discharge our duties and responsibilities appropriately according to the needs and demands of society. Family and parents in particular have a great role to play in safeguarding their children from this engulfing danger. Also, it is incumbent on the stakeholders and researchers to facilitate the research on the topic, so that the impact is thoroughly studied, analyzed and understood, and that could set the base for developing effective strategies to deal with the issue and mitigate its consequential dangers. Why can't we have a 'Filtering and Screening System', not at the userlevel, but at the service-provider level, so that our children and youth get immunized and protected from the harmful online content! Why can't it be made compulsory and obligatory for the Internet Service Providers to have the Filter System! Yes, it will surely reduce the 'profit' of these companies, as the maximum usage of internet through-out the world is to seek pornographic content and things related with it. But can't we sacrifice our 'mean-profits' for the sake of our children and youth. Won't we strive to

Epilogue Ă˜ 81 Ă— October 2009

prevent our children and youth from falling in the endless-quagmire of lust, immorality ‌ and death? The sooner, the better! (Javaid Rashid is a Research Scholar Centre for Social Medicine and Community Health in Jawaharlal Nehru University, NewDelhi; feedback: javaid.mswku@gmail.com)

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SPEC I AL

ART I C L E

Behaviour

How to Read a Person by Gestures DR. G.Q. SHEIKH

E

very society exercises gestures in order to communicate. Some of them are stylized in the dance, head-nodding, hand-shaking and nosethumbing, which may have very different meanings in different cultures. One's posture and manner of walking also may have communicate significance. A person may walk as though he is 'master of all the surveys”, or he may walk in a manner which indicates utter despair. Even the physical distance between two individuals engaged in private conversation reflects the nature of their relationship. Strangers converse at greater distances than acquaintances, and close friends show the greatest physical proximity. Less conventionalized than gestures or posture but still having some degree of general meaning are such symbols as the sort of clothes a person wears, the kind of car he drives, his hair style and his beard or clean shaved face and many instances of communications discovers the importance of human behaviour. Since communication involves multiprosess manners. It is palable that emotional relations, mannerisms, habits and gestures are separate and distinct from those of a person sitting next and lumping them into one category is unjustified. Observing gestures is quire simple

but interpreting them is obfuscated. Study reveals that the gesture of Covering One's Mouth while speaking exhibits that the person is unsure of what he is saying. This gesture (covering the mouth) indicates that the person is doubtful, unsure, lying or distorting the truth. Folded Arms and Steeping Fingertips together is associated with defensive posture. One should not be completely influenced by observing only one single gesture and making a decision while being unaware of the gesture-cluster and the prior and subsequent gestures. The most readily group of nonverbal gestures is the facial expressions. Eyes are most observable part of the body which is being focused more often than any other part of the body and the expressions of the eyes have widely accepted meanings. A person with eyes wide open, lips tightly closed and eyebrows down is an aggressive individual. On the other hand, a person with droppy eyelids veiled, slight smile and peacefully arched eyebrows without any furrow on the forehead is by and large a very capable and competitive individual who is social and cooperative. Jane Templeton, a psychologist in his article “How salesmen can find out What's really on a customer's mind”, observed that if a prospect's eyes are down cat and face turned away, you're being shut out. However, if the mouth is

Epilogue Ø 82 × October 2009

relaxed, without the mechanical smile, chin is forward, he is more or less considering your presentation. If his eyes engage your for several seconds at a time with a slight, one-sided smile extending at least to nose level, he is weighing your proposal. Then if his head is shifted to the same level at yours, smile is relaxed and appears enthusiastic, the sale is virtually made. Michael Argyle in his book, The Psychology of Interpersonal Behaviour, observes that people look at each other more than 30 and 60 percent of the time. Two individuals while talking look at each other more than 60 percent out of the time, they are probably more interested in the other person than in what he is saying. The amount of eye contact varies dramatically with different individuals and cultures. Certain individuals, due to their shyness, tend to avoid eye contact or at least minimize it if at all possible. These persons, study reveals are honest, sincere and dedicated to their job. “Giving someone the Eye”, exhibits facial impression with eye contact that indicates interest no matter how long or brief glance may be. Generally adults who walk rapidly and swing their arms freely tend to be goral oriented and readily pursue their objectives, while the person who habitually walks with this hands in his pockets, even in warm weather, tends to be critical and secretive. Such person


SPEC I AL

ART I C L E Behaviour

always tried to put other people down. A person while talking raised his chin, arms swing, legs somewhat stiff and with calculated pace is categorized a self-satisfied individual. This expression is generally applied to politicians/leaders whose subordinates keep in step behind them liked 'ducklings following their mother's is a sign of loyalty and devotion. Woman when, when expressing sincere feelings to other woman particularly during crises do not shake hand but gently hold the other's hands in their and with congruous facial expression communicate their deep sympathy. The modern handshake is a gesture of welcome. The palms interlocking signify openness and the touching indicates oneness. Shaking with the right hand while grasping the other person's right forearm or right shoulders with the left hand indicates acceptance while as offering fingers for handshake is a bad taste and a sign of discomfort, non acceptance and gesture of insincerity. Crossing legs horizontally with the

ankle resting on the other knee seem to be the ones who give most competition and need the greatest amount of attention. A woman crosses her legs and moves foot in a slight kicking position, is probably bored with the situation but anxiously waiting for depart. Speaking before a group or in the classroom, a speaker must be aware of the gesture of 'tilting of heads'. If the heads of the participants are not titled, feel that the participants are not interested in listening the material. Once the speaker knows this gesture, he can gauge well how his information is getting across. When heads become erect rather than tilted, backs straighten up, glances at the ceilings, at watches, at other and finally some will start positioning their bodies remember the state of bored ness has come and exit is at peak. The speaker is no longer acceptable. If the group has reached this stage, the speaker should understand that the participants/ students are nonverbally signaling departure. One some occasions, an angry

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person, unable to explain feelings directly, scratches head or rub the back of neck in frustration. The gesture of frustration can also be observed by clinching fists and holdings wrists or arms. Turning up one's nose, describes what appears to be indicating dislike and rejection. Even babies instinctively turn up their nose at food they dislike. Gesture with glasses by dropping eyeglasses onto the lower bridge of the nose and peering over them is a negative emotional reaction. Taking the glassed deliberately off and cleaning the lenses even though the glasses may not need implies delay in decision. In similar gesture in which the glasses are removed and the earpiece of the frame is put in the mouth signifies that the person seeks more information. And gesture in which glasses are taking off either quickly and throwing them on the table is an indication of emotional outburst of the individual. At the end, it may be inferred upon that to jump into conclusions without in-depth exposure to non-verbal communications is difficult.

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