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Epilogue J & K ’ S M O N T H LY M A G A Z I N E

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DRUG ABUSE AND ADDICTION COMMON SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF DRUG ABUSE : Ø Neglecting responsibilities at work or home. Ø Taking drugs under dangerous conditions or taking risks while high such as driving, while on drugs, using dirty needles or having unprotected sex. Ø Getting into legal trouble such as arrests for disorderly conduct, driving under the influence or stealing to support a drug habit. Ø Causing problems in relationship such as fights with your partner or family members, an unhappy boss, or the loss of old friends. Ø You have built up a drug tolerance. Ø You experience symptoms such as nausea, restlessness, insomnia, depression, sweating, shaking and anxiety. Ø You have lost control over your drug use. Ø Your life revolves around drug use. Ø You have abandoned activities such as hobbies, sports and socializing. Ø It is causing measure problems in your like Blackouts, infections mood swings, depression and paranoia.

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Epilogue because there is more to know

CONTENT

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YV Sharma

The Way Forward

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Annil Suri

Opinion Kishenganga Hydroelectric Project Another Baglihar in Making

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Pia Malhotra

Volume 4, Issue 7, July 2010

I N FOCUS Elusive Engagements 12 Between Delhi & Kashmir Manmohan’s Economics and Vajpayee’s Politics Zafar Choudhary

Documents Atal Bihari Vajpayee Dr. Manmohan Singh Dr. Manmohan Singh Atal Bihari Vajpayee

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Ladakh Affairs

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Exclusive Series Roy Bucher : Right Man in the Wrong Place?

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Rakesh Ankit

Essay Ambiguity of Kashmiriyat

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Nyla Ali Khan

15 Political Economy of Prime Ministerial Visits Dipanker Sengupta

Column Repeal AFSPA, Return to Idea of India

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Anmol Sharma

Kashmir Under the Mughals-II Empire and Regional Industries

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Perspectives Kashmir can help build Solid Regional Ties Nazir A Dar

Associate Editors Irm Amin Baig Tsewang Rigzin Zorawar Singh Jamwal

Art Editor Keshav Sharma

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Need of Hour is coordination Between REgions

Consulting Editor D. Suba Chandran Manu Srivastsa

General Manager Kartavya Pandoh

Contributors to this Issue Prologue

Vol. 4, Issue 7

54 57 58 59 59

Epilogue, July 2010


CONTRIBUTORS TO THIS ISSUE

Ankit, Rakesh; (Forgotten History p41) is a young historian from Bihar. As a Rhodes Scholar recently he studied various missing links in the making of Kashmir conflict. Based on his first hand study, he is contributing exclusive series to Epilogue Chandran, D Suba; (In Focus, p52) is Deputy Director at Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies. Author of many books and an acclaimed expert on Kashmir and Indo-Pak relations, he is Consulting Editor of Epilogue Magazine

Sobhrajani, Manisha; (In Focus p50) is a Delhi based independent researcher working at various aspects of Kashmir conflict. She divided her time between Delhi and Jammu and Kashmir Mohammed, Prof Jigar; (History, p45) is professor of History at the University of Jammu. He is associated with Epilogue since inception as Editorial Advisor on History of Jammu and Kashmir Rigzin, Tsewang; (Ladakh Affairs, P28) is Associate Editor of this Magazine based at Leh office

Choudhary, Zafar; (In Focus, p12) is Editor of Epilogue Magazine and also Executive Editor of Early Times, Daily Newspaper from Jammu

Sengupta, Dipankar; (In Focus, P15) teaches Economics at University of Jammu

Dar, Nazir; (Perspectives, P6) is President of the Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries

Sharma, Anmol; (Errata, P38) is a practicing lawyer at Jammu wing of J&K High Court and regular contributor to this Magazine

Dolma, Richen; (Ladakh Affairs, P32) is a Ladakhi Journalist, Editor of Reach Ladakh, based at Leh Khan, Nyla Ali; (Books p‌) is a Kashmir writer and scholar and author of (most recently) Islam, Women and Violence in Kashmir: Between India and Pakistan. She is a professor of English at a US University

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Sharma, YV; (Perspectives, P7) is President of the Jammu Chamber of Commerce and Industries Suri, Annil; (Perspectives, P8) is a leading entrepreneur and quality consultant based at Jammu. He is one among the pioneers who pushed for Cross-LoC trade

Malhotra, Pia; (Water Woes, P10) is a Research Officer with Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies, New Delhi

Readers' requests for getting in touch with the authors, for feedback, comments and further discussions on their subjects of interest, are welcome. Since all authors/contributors are not interested in taking mails directly, the readers are requested to send us interview requests at editor@epilogue.in for passing on to the authors

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Vol. 4, Issue 7

Epilogue, July 2010


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PROLOGUE

From the Editor

Talk to the People ZAFAR CHOUDHARY

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he Director General of Jammu and Kashmir Police Kuldeep Khoda says that more than 500 militants are operating in Jammu and Kashmir at present. The Army General at Northern Command puts this figure at around 800. 'Credible inputs' of both suggest there may be as many guerillas waiting on the other side of Line of Control or International Border to sneak in to disturb peace in Jammu and Kashmir. If this is the total figures of elements inimical peace in the state, the strength of security forces on borders and in the interiors is enough to handle them and secure peace for the peoples. Trends of past few months suggest that this challenge is being handled well by combined strength of security forces without suffering much loss. But what to do with the unarmed rioters who have literally taken control of the key roads and streets in Kashmir Valley putting the security forces at defensive. 11 of them have been killed in less than three weeks of June. The Paramilitary force Central Reserve Police Force is in the eye of storm for all these killings and the human rights organizations are crying hoarse. Home Minister P Chidambram is reminding the people of Kashmir of the rights of security forces as well. He says 50 CRPF troopers have been badly injured by

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the stone pelters during same time. State authorities put the number of injured at 300. Government is talking about the right of self defence of the security forces. But after every unpleasant incident, heads are rolled in the state Police as well as in CRPF. Sources suggest that many officers of state Police are now lobbying for insignificant postings where they are not directly responsible for maintaining law and order. State government says that separatists are instigating youths to disturb peace. Are they telling the world that Kashmir is under absolute control of separatists? Are they telling the world that separatists have the capacity to throw life out of gear leaving the government helpless? All this points to a disturbing situation in Kashmir in which decline in militant violence can't be taken as an indicator of improvement in situation. The situation is volatile and it needs and it needs political handling. Mere blaming will not help. The genesis of present crisis can be traced in the lack of trust between the political establishment and the peoples. The absence of a dialogue between New Delhi and Kashmir is giving ample space to the radicals to call shots. Terrorist violence may be handled with an armed response but when people embark on a war they need to be talked to. That is the only way forward in Kashmir. Feedback : zafarchoudhary@epilogue.in

Vol. 4, Issue 7

OCTOBER 2008

APRIL 2009

Epilogue, July 2010


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Perspectives

Cross-LoC Trade

Kashmir can help Build Solid Regional Ties NAZIR A DAR

The world is moving towards greater proximity and cooperation. Globalization is strengthening economic, political and cultural relations among people across different parts of the world. In my opinion, a globalized world will consist of united regions that have geographical, cultural and economic commonalities.

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conomic cooperation is linked by deep historical and cultural ties. Today's political, economic and geopolitical conditions present unprecedented opportunities to strengthen cooperation between the regions. We must recognize our obligations towards the region, and our desire for peaceful co-existence and dynamic cooperation consistent with our regional interests and the interests of the countries of the region. Building and strengthening relations should be among the top priorities for economic cooperation we should make efforts to turn Kashmir into a vibrant centre of economic activities across the region Kashmir can play an active role in furthering closer ties and cooperation of the region. There is huge potential in strengthening economic cooperation between both parts of Kashmir & the whole region, There are opportunities for our people, and our growing young populations, to develop the intact natural reserves available in our region and to make our region economically empowered and a future we in Kashmir are dreaming about with the resources we have and which have not been tapped in the way we would have liked. I would emphasize on the following out of which progress

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has been made in some and in others we have had no headway.

LoC Trade As we know that it is one of the things which was not stopped even when 26/11 Mumbai attacks occurred, which augurs well for its it's future, but has the same problems which were at the start of it for e.g. currency which we had suggested in Indian and Pakistani rupee with fixed rate finalized for a period of at least three months. Unfortunately we are still doing barter trade which has not helped in it's increase, the limited days of trade, the non meeting of traders on both sides, the arbitrary reduction of items to be traded even within the limited items of twenty one allowed initially which has not been enhanced There is tremendous scope for improvement and there is dire need to put in place the proper infrastructure which includes banking and communication facilities, multientry permits for traders and inclusion of demand driven products.

Free Economic Zone In this regard I would like to say that the Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries has this vision of free economic zone and combining with a finan-

Vol. 4, Issue 7

cial centre as the next step in LoC trade as then it will restore the trade links with China, Pakistan, Russia, Central Asian countries, Iran and Afghanistan. It will give for the first time in history the benefit of its position at being at the crossroads of all these countries on one side and India on the other and go a long way to take both parts of Kashmir away from the economic deprivation which we are suffering for so long.

Joint Management This is going to be the only way by which the different expectations of our population in all regions will be satisfied or else we may have no progress on anything but this will become the main issue. Different models of cooperation can be made and the Indus water treaty can be the basic agreement which will need drastic change to take care of the issues by joint management and exploitation we will readily get investment for development from international companies also and have both India and Pakistan as market for our surplus power generated by these projects we are sure that this is one sector by which Kashmir both sides will become economically not dependent on grants, loans.

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Perspectives

Cross-LoC Trade There is tremendous scope in exploring joint management in areas of tourism. In tourism if we have group tourism by which tourists can without any problem crisscross both the areas in respect to mountaineering etc will go a long way to strengthen the tourism industry here while as giving a boost to this industry on the other side which is on a lower level than here. By constant interaction of all tourism players on both sides this industry can become the main revenue earner for all the regions. As all of us know that service sector is the main GDP creator in the world and the service sectors in which we have an edge are education and health services which will create the necessary constituency in the general population of both the regions which will augur well for the future of our people

Transit Road Kashmir was once a part of Silk Route. I firmly believe that, in the 21st century, we can revive it and promote it into a centre of peace, security and prosperity. To reach this goal, stability needs to be ensured and cooperation needs to be enhanced. In my opinion, the main source of insecurity and obstacle to cooperation is instability we will not have a safe and stable region unless issues related to stability of our region are properly addressed and resolved. There should be no doubt that the economic stability of our region is directly tied to the ultimate peace in region. We want peaceful and prudent solutions to all regional issues and stay committed to partnership and to the principle of regional cooperation. The principles of friendship and coexistence are in the interest of the region. A vision of stability, progress and prosperity in our region is the true reflection of the desires and legitimate aspirations of the peoples of our region. I fully believe that, through commitment and collective efforts, we will be able to make our common vision a reality.

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Need of Hour is Coordination Between Regions YV SHARMA It is no denying the fact that the modern world is highly interdependent. No region can think of progressing without the help of other. We are a very vast country with different economic problems and there is also huge possibility of greater economic cooperation between the two parts of the State.

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t is encouraging that as a part of the ongoing peace initiative the interregional trade is going on between the two parts of the Kashmir. Our experience regarding this says that people have benefited a lot. The Trade across the LoC has been going on for quite a long time, now and traders from both sides have reaped rich benefits from it. In our part of Kashmir we have handicrafts, embroidery items, fresh fruits, dry fruits and many other items which reach the state from many other parts of the country. Similarly the PoK is also having some useful items, which are not only useful for our state but for other parts of the country also. Apart from the profits from this business, this trade has contributed a lot in creating better understanding between the people of the two regions. It has removed certain doubts and misconceptions and has created confidence that the people in the two regions have common interests for which they must live together with peace and goodwill. This is a great benefit which will have a long lasting effect in the confidence building measures between the two countries. The trade at present requires enhancement and diversification, there is greater need to make expert groups on both sides to identify items which can be useful on either side for example the present arrangements have hardly any industrial bias. Industrial products which are available in the two regions have to be identified by the experts and included in the list of items. Moreover some more arrangements are required for example the trade as of now is on Barter system because there is problem of currency exchange and banking facilities. They have to be advanced in future. Free trade is possible only if security scenario on the two sides is sufficiently strong. Sometimes the required number of trucks cannot be sent from one part to another on account of this difficulty. I suggest that "there should be a permanent advisory body on the governmental level to review and make the reasonable suggestions on the issue. Cooperation on the another level that is the representatives of trade

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Epilogue, July 2010


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Perspectives Cross-LoC Trade

and industry on both sides and their frequent meetings can also play a greater role. Yet another important need for strengthening this inter-regional trade is to have a greater coordination between the three regions of our state i.e. Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. In this connection I would like to look back at the economic loss suffered by our state during Amarnath land row in 2008. There was complete economic shut down on a mischievously engineered issue by some vested interests. The people of our state have a long history of secular traditions and have been living in peace for centuries. I can vouchsafe that the people of all the three regions of our state are still together. It is only a handful of people with vested interests who create fissures in order to grind their own axes and fish in troubled waters. Such situations have to be avoided, as for possible by the government, the sensible people and the representatives of trade and industrial organizations in the state. Similarly I would demand from the leaders of trade on the other side of LoC to curb such activities of the vested interests with the help of well meaning people there. Opening of more routes like Nowshehra-Mirpur, PlannwalaBhimber along LoC and improving the list of items in consultation with both sides can also go a long way in bringing a sea change in the situation. Some people point out that in the name of LOC Trade many things from other parts of the country available in our part of the state and similarly many things available in PoK from other parts of the Pakistan are being freely traded. I see no harm in it because this will also build up the bridges between the two countries and normalize relations between the two countries in the long run. It is my firm conviction that if a research is done, we can find out many useful items which can be of great benefit to both the sides. This is a gigantic task and has to be undertaken by expert committees on the both sides with a lot of serious efforts on their part. Some critics of the trade say that certain items imported from China to Pakistan have been included the name of this trade. Whereas these remarks are exaggerated, I see nothing bad even in this sort of exercise. We imported many pulses from PoK when we were suffering shortage of the same in our part. Many people who visited our part from PoK demanded umbrellas, tea, apples, textiles and handicrafts from us in great quantities. If we can come to the help of each other in the case of shortages or in the case of better qualities in the other part there is no harm in the trade of these things. I can also say that many of our traders visiting PoK must also be demanding certain things which are better in quality than available in our part. In the long run it can also encourage the traders and industrialists on both the sides to improve their quality significantly. To conclude, I would say that trade takes place between different states of our country and this keeps our country united; similarly if this trade across LOC brings the people together, creates better understanding and normalizes the relations for the solution of the problems between the two countries it is worth continuing and should be extended as much as possible.

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Vol. 4, Issue 7

The Way Forward ANNIL SURI

Economy comes first followed by peace. Jammu and Kashmir State has to be designed keeping in view state's unique economic drawbacks arising out of locational disadvantages, land locked (shallow) markets, remoteness & poor connectivity, hilly terrain and poor infrastructure coupled with law & order situation. All these factors have resulted in low economic activity, low employment and low income generation.

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herefore, keeping in view the economic growth and economic unification, Confidence Building Measures – in the shape of Cross-LoC trade was widely appreciated and accepted by trade and industry on both sides of line of control. For achieving dual goals of economic development and peace building using a market development intervention, we must combine Market and Conflict Analysis and the following factors must be kept in mind and addressed: GOAL AND PURPOSE: The goal should include overall desired impact e.g. reduced poverty as well as target population. The purpose should include the target market as well as general programme strategy e.g. stabilizing businesses. M A R K E T A N A LY S I S : What strengths/opportunities exist currently in

Epilogue, July 2010


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Perspectives Cross-LoC Trade

the market ? What constraints prevent from reaching higher value markets ? e.g. the end market, the enabling environment, supporting services, horizontal linkages, etc. A proper root cause analysis needs to be done to improve Cross-Loc trade. INTERVENTIONS: What risks we need to address? How might these constraints be solved? This might be linkages, technology or other solutions. How can this trade be done sustainably on a commercial basis? CONFLICT ANALYSIS: We must understand the political, economic and socio-cultural context and issues of conflict and the main stakeholders in these spheres as well as their goals and interests. The interaction between analyzing the market and analyzing the conflict determines the interplay between the conflict and specific market. It was a conscious decision of both the states of India & Pakistan to start cross-loc trade where heart ruled the brain but to sustain, stabilize and strengthen it further, it has to be seen as a process and continually improved. So, in my opinion the 'way forward' is: MACRO COMES FIRST: Without a banking system and stable currency, the economy will neither stabilize nor grow effectively. Facilitation of Travel and Traders access to each other e.g. Multiple entry trade passes and trade not to be restricted to two days per week only. Improved infrastructure facilities e.g. Roads and Bridges, Telecommunication, postal and courier services, improved loading and unloading and scanning facilities at trade facilitation points; Buyers-Sellers meet – to display trade potential. KEEP CHANGES DIGESTIBLE: Small targeted changes should be absorbed more readily than sweeping replacements of entire nomenclature. There

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should be creation of alternate dispute resolution system for commercial contracts with a time bound programme. CONNECT THE PARTS: Trust requires understanding; create space for people to people contact by bringing traders (stakeholders) to the table for regular interaction and dispute resolution. BEWARE OF LOW-HANGING FRUIT: Short-term impact can inspire long-term reform efforts e.g. reduce the time needed to implement reforms for continuously improving cross-loc trade which will keep trade operational. CREATE OPPORTUNITY: Expansion of list of items to be traded i.e. all items produced and manufactured be included in order to make cross-loc trade viable, meaningful and to take it beyond symbolic gesture. OPENING OF OTHER VIABLE TRADE ROUTES: Further include new areas/opportunities in service sector e.g. tourism, joint ventures and tie-ups between technical and educational institutions, etc. RECOGNIZE THE SHORT-TERM BENEFITS OF LONG-TERM EFFORTS: Some reforms take years to accomplish. Although they may not show short-term economic impact, the process of reform can be used to build trust and understanding among the stakeholders. TAKE THE LONG ROAD: Stabilization takes time – at least ten years. Commit political and financial resources for the long term. Further create wider public interest in the economy of the state ( across both sides of LoC) is to make entire economic data available on internet and arrange a consideration of all the comments and suggestions it receives. The major reason for this fast emerging atmosphere of peace through Cross-LoC trade is that there is an all pervasive

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feeling among the people of Jammu and Kashmir that violence is not the instrument of achieving the political ends. So, in my opinion Cross-LOC trade is a wonderful CBM and we must delink it from terrorism and allowing Cross-LoC trade will strengthen the Indo-Pak peace process.

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opinion

Water Woes KISHENGANGA HYDROELECTRIC PROJECT

Another Baglihar in Making PIA MALHOTRA

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ven as India and Pakistan are striving to 're-set' their relationship after the Mumbai attacks, a new issue has insidiously crept in and is threatening to become a major flashpoint- the issue of Water. Pakistan alleges that India, by building various hydroelectric projects, in the Indus River Basin, is causing a serious shortage of water in Pakistan. Being a largely agrarian country, this shortage has major repercussions for Pakistan from domestic unrest to security implications. Farmers in Pakistan have increasingly started demonstrating against India's ostensible 'stealing of Pak waters' and this rhetoric has even been labeled as 'Water Terrorism' by militants like Hafiz Saaed, the leader of the Lashkar-e-Taiba. Not very long ago, India and Pakistan were at loggerheads over the Baglihar Hydroelctric Power Project which was finally resolved with the intervention of the World Bank. The issue that is fast becoming potential Baglihar-II is India's planned project on the river Ganga, the 330MW Kishenganga hydroelectric project. The Water and Power Ministry along with the Indus Water Commission in Pakistan has now served a legal notice to India, to bring the Kishenganga issue before the WB's court of arbitration, a mechanism that has never been used before. Pakistan has three major objections to the Project. First, the diversion of the river Ganga in India, called Neelum

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in Pakistan is not allowed under the Indus Water Treaty (IWT) and hence would mean violating the principles of the Treaty by India. Second, it will cause a 27 per cent water deficit in Pakistan when the project gets completed. Third, it will obstruct Pakistan's own plans for constructing a hydroelectric project on the river Neelum; the proposed Neelum-Jhelum power project.

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As far as the first issue of diversion is concerned, India maintains that although the IWT prohibits India from obstructing flows of water in Pakistan's rivers (Kishenganaga is a tributary of the Jhelum, which was given to Pak, under the IWT), it still allows the upper riparian to construct projects that do not disrupt or reduce waters to the lower riparian. In an interview with the leading water expert in India, BG

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opinion

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India, would have to nominate its own experts within four weeks, failing which the decision would be taken ex-parte and without an Indian representation. Recently, India nominated its experts as well, and the process of arbitration will start shortly. According to Verghese, India tried to persuade Pakistan to settle the case outside the court of arbitration because that is a very long drawn out process and is also considerably expensive. It would also stall India's Project and negatively impact its energy needs. This issue interestingly, might not end up being Baglihar-II because this time Pakistan also has a stake in this Project. If it remains embroiled in a dispute, it would affect its own Neelum-Jhelum Project which it is hugely depending on, for its water starved nation. India maintains that the Kishenganga issue is yet another tactic by Pakistan to divert attention from its own water mismanagement and intra-provincial disputes over water. The IWT is very specific about every detail in building hydroelectric Projects and India has always adhered to the treaty. Instead of passing the buck, India and Pakistan need to work collectively on water conservation and water management. India should be more forthcoming in providing information about its upcoming Projects and Pakistan should accept that India and Pakistan with their growing economy need energy, and hydroelectric projects become necessary to meet this need. Pakistan should also find a domestic solution for its water issues, ranging from resolving the Kalabagh issue to focusing on the huge wastage of water. Alternatively, India and Pakistan could focus on assessing the impact of these Projects on the ecology of Kashmir on both sides of the LoC. The local people of the Gurez valley, where the Project would be constructed, in J&K, the Dard Shin people, believe that it would destroy its entire ecology and drive more than 25, 000 of them, out of their ancient homeland. Cooperation is essential because water is an existential issue and can create a potential crisis in the region, undesirable for both India and Pakistan.

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Verghese; Kishenganga was initially conceived as a storage dam, which is also allowed under the Treaty but was later changed to a run-ofriver project. However, Pakistan responds that even the initial filling of the dam would reduce the flow of water to Pakistan. BG Verghese clarifies that the IWT does not prohibit initial storage of water and even provides specific details on the months that it can be conducted, for each river, time of the year etc. and India will adhere to that. With regards to the second claim of the reduction in water in Pakistan by 27 per cent, India maintains that this reduction is largely due to climatic changes. Water availability in Pakistan might have reduced dramatically but that is also a consequence of mismanagement of water and tardiness in water conservation. Regarding Pakistan's third grievance about Kishenganga interfering with its own proposed Project, India again refers to the IWT. The IWT specifies that the country that completes a project on a shared river first, has the rights of use to that river. India claims that it started the Project before Pakistan and also intimated Pakistan about the same. According to informed officials in the Indian Ministry of Water, under the IWT, any country that starts a project on a shared River must ensure that “the then existing uses” of the other country are protected. The Kishenganga Project was started by India in the 1980s, and at that time there was no use of the waters by Pakistan. Verghese states that the Indian side conducted an inspection of the area in 2006-2007 and found that only few thousand hectares of water was being consumed for irrigation at that time, which is not of any significant magnitude, to be affected by the Project. Pakistan has now put this issue up before the World Bank's Court of Arbitration, something that has never been done before. BG Verghese elucidates that in the case of arbitration, the Treaty states that each Party would nominate two experts each and the World Bank would appoint three experts. Pakistan has already nominated the two experts from its side and according to the IWT,

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BETWEEN DELHI & KASHMIR

Manmohan's Economics and Vajpayee's Politics ZAFAR CHOUDHARY

Beginning with Atal Behari Vajpayee's Jammu and Kashmir visit in April 2002, the state has since been hosting a Prime Minister every year without any break. Prime Ministers of India visit many states in country at different points but their Jammu and Kashmir tour assumes added significance as it if often seen more as a diplomatic engagement than a domestic journey. This perception hankers on from the times of Jawaharlal Nehru. Present essays looks into Manmohan Singh and Vajpayee's Kashmir engagement through nine visits since 2002.

T

he Bisham Patamaha of Indian politics, Atal Behari Vajpayee has not been seen since 2008. Even his party BJP is not talking much about him leave aside taking cue from form of politics. However, in Kashmir, where BJP is a hate symbol, Vajpayee is being missed deeply. His memories are recalled vividly by separatists even as the mainstream political circles and other keen watchers of Kashmir scene talk about Vajpayee's statesmanship, his political depth and style of engaging with the public mind. Interestingly, memories of Vajpayee are freshened up every time Prime Minister Manmohan Singh makes a visit to Jammu and Kashmir. On June 7, 2010, when Dr Manmohan Singh landed in Kashmir, this was his seventh visit to the troubled state since he took over as Prime Minister in 2004. This time his main engagement was at convocation of the

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Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences. Like his six previous visits, Manmohan Singh's twoday stay in Srinagar didn't cut much ice. And hardly anyone had expected this in the given circumstances. As discussions and debates rolled a month before Dr Singh's scheduled arrival, this was apparently for the first time when separatists in Kashmir decided against welcoming the Prime Minister with their customary shutdown call. “We welcome the Prime Minister with an open mind”, said Hurriyat leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq in one of his post-Friday sermon speeches. But he sent out a message: “for creating an atmosphere conducive for dialogue, the Prime Minister must prevail and ensure that there is an end to violations of human rights”. The atmosphere was if not very upbeat it was not hostile either as Prime Ministers or other dignitaries from New Delhi expect in Kashmir. However, barely days ahead of Prime Minister's arrival the

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inevitable happened. It turned out that three youths allegedly killed by Army as militants on April 27 in Kupwara were actually the local civilians hired by the Army. This revelation led to a string of reactions and proved as a spoiler of atmosphere that awaited Prime Minister's visit. Some damage control was done, obviously at behest of PMO, by suspending a Major and removing a Colonel accused of staged killings but by that time the positive atmosphere has been vitiated. In his convocation address, the Prime Minister reiterated his commitment of zero tolerance to human rights violations but the political message he sent on the occasion did not inspire many in the Valley. In variance to his previous statements that Government of India was willing to engage with all those who shun violence, this time the Prime Minister said, “our doors are open to dialogue with those who oppose the path of confrontation”. This appeared to may

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as a hardened stand and not really complimentary to what the popular mood expected on renewal of a sagging dialogue process. Says Zubar Dar, a peace activist in Kashmir, Prime Minister has just changed the goalpost”. Dar adds: “Dr Singh has apparently set a condition and left it to Kashmiri separatist leadership to create an atmosphere for dialogue”. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh or specifically Congress led United Progressive Alliance government's approach to Kashmir has a unique feature. “In sharp contrast to Vajpayee's political handling Manmohan Singh has apparently laid more stress on economic engagements”, says Rekha Chowdhary, Professor of Political Science at University of Jammu. Economic engagement is not a bad idea if political means are not bringing any results but importance of having dialogue can't be summarily overlooked. Manmohan Singh's economic package of Rs 24,000 Crore announced during his visit in November 2004 and later revised to Rs 30,000 Crore could not bring any major visible change on the ground as this initiative was not coupled with a sustainable political process aimed at mellowing down the dissent. Compared to Manmohan Singh's big ticket package, Vajpayee had announced a humble aid of Rs 6700 Crore but his political engagements on the sidelines set in motion a process of building trust helping tremendously in most credible elections of 2002 which even the separatists could not dispute. Soon after elections Vajpayee complimented the growing public trust in democracy by initiating a renewed peace process at the domestic front. He invited separatists for talks with his Deputy Prime Minister LK Advani, launched an inclusive dialogue process by appointing

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NN Vohra as his interlocutor and simultaneously offered tremendous support and freedom to the state government led by Mufti Mohammad Sayeed. All this while, New Delhi's engagements with Islamabad continued despite slew of ghastly terrorist attacks, particularly on military formations in Jammu and Kashmir. Assembly elections of 2008 were far more challenging than those of 2002. These elections were held in the backdrop of Amarnath land row agitation which had thrown Kashmir at a farthest possible distance from New Delhi. Manmohan Singh government rushed through major Kashmir centric confidence building measures by not only announcing but also practically launching the Cross-LoC trade. Shortly ahead of elections, his October 2008 visit along with Congress president Sonia Gandhi was again an outreach project of economic outlook. More people voted in 2008 elections than the UPA government would have expected. The atmosphere for a competitive participation in the democratic process further built up in 2009 Lok Sabha elections. Both elections some prominent separatist faces also. H o w e v e r, a p o l i t i c a l p r o c e s s complimenting the overwhelming public mood still remains missing. A fortnight after Home Minister P Chidambram's 'Srinagar declaration' of 'quiet diplomacy' Prime Minister Singh again visited Valley towards the end of October 2009. Addressing a largely attended public rally in south Kashmir, the Prime Minister's speech again veered around the economic initiatives. He said: “unprecedented resources have been committed to the state for its comprehensive reconstruction…in last five years, the Government of India has taken a number of steps to bring development in Jammu and Kashmir.

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We have tried to revive traditional connectivity between people of the region…under skill development the Ministry of Tourism will train 300 youths. The Ministry of Labour will train 800 youths in ITIs every year…I am happy to announce that the Government of India has decided to set up two Central Universities…I am happy to announce that the Central Government has decided to fund cost of Rs 385 Crore to build heritage Mughal Road…the Central Government had decided to commit additional funds of Rs 365 Crore for Dal Lake conservation project..” So on and so forth. Nearly 80 percent of the Prime Minister's written speech focused on economic initiatives and also had a line of reprimand for the state government for not conducting elections to Panchayats. Recalling his last state visit in 2008 ahead of assembly elections, the Prime Minister said he was happy to note that people turned out in large numbers to vote. He advised the state government to “avail the golden opportunity of consolidating peace”. On what was pending at his command, the Prime Minister said, “I wish to say today that we are willing to talk to everyone who has any meaningful ideas in promoting peace and development in Kashmir. We want to carry all sections of peoples with us in resolving all political and economic problems of Jammu and Kashmir”. Manmohan Singh advised the state government to consolidate peace dividends of assembly elections but such an initiative from New Delhi could not take off. For months it as felt that Home Minister P Chidambram's novel peace project of quiet diplomacy was working behind the curtains. His announcement of this new form of dialogue had earned him an overwhelmingly positive response in Kashmir. Soon after Home Minister's

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announcement in Srinagar in middle of October 2009, the separatists, particularly Mirwaiz group, had embarked on a series of consultations among themselves and with other groups of civil society in making consensus on a positive course of dialogue with New Delhi. However, in May this year (over six months after quiet diplomacy announcement) Mirwaiz went public with his anger saying that there was no contact, whatsoever, between his group or any other separatist organization with any representative of the Government of India and the so called quiet diplomacy had never taken off. Mirwaiz said this when Kashmir had already burst into renewed spate of anger following series of rights violations incidents, after a brief lull. What all is happening in the curfewed Kashmir today can now easily be attributed to an absence of trust and contact between New Delhi and separatists giving an undue space to the radicals for calling shots. Some groups of intelligentsia have recently been talking about a new theory –'no dialogue is the best solution'. If this is what dominates the minds of Government of India then the party in Kashmir is spoilt. It is fact that militant violence is on a constant decline year after year but that is not an indicator of what can be concluded as 'all is well'. The militant violence has been replaced by the street protests which is proving as more perilous. In month of June alone 11 persons have been killed by security forces, particularly Central Reserve Police Force, in retaliation of attacks on them. A peeved Home Minister Chidambram says, “CRPF had to use force in self-defence”. If 11 persons are killed in self defence in a period of 15 days then situation calls for immediate rethink on what was going wrong in Kashmir. Engaging in a dialogue with the

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peoples is perhaps the best possible way of moving ahead and this is the only process which does not harm any party. One fails to comprehend why UPA government is shying away from a dialogue with its own people in Kashmir. When New Delhi has made remarkable improvement in relations with Islamabad despite going throw few of the goriest incidents of terrorism in Indian history and all clues clearly pointing towards soil of Pakistan, an uneasy silence on Kashmir is quite disturbing. Besides major economic initiatives, the UPA government shall always be remembered for launching the Cross-LoC bus service and Cross-LoC trade but there is still no alternate for a domestic engagement with the peoples. Looking back at pre-Mamohan Singh era, the NDA government had constant political engagements with Kashmir which did not go without showing some results. The BJP, which led the NDA, is a party with traditionally hostile approach to Kashmir but despite all those ideological difficulties, Prime Minister Vajpayee talked about a solution within the ambit of humanity. He was a leader who knew the language for his audience. During his visit to Kashmir in April 2002, he extended a hand of friendship to both Pakistan and the people in Kashmir but also added a caveat for the neighbor. “Don't misread our sentiment of friendship as our weakness”, said Vajpayee as he referred to his presence at unified headquarters meeting in Srinagar. Compared to present times, Vajpayee had a difficult course to deal in Kashmir. Those were the days of intensified militant violence and string of terrorist attacks –on J&K Legislative Assembly, Indian Parliament House and several military formations. In backdrop of these incidents it was difficult to convince the public opinion in country

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for a peace initiative. But Vajpayee took that risk more than once. Says Naeem Akhtar, a seasoned bureaucrat to who quit top government post to help Mufti Mohammad Sayeed's political initiative: “Vajpayee's will always remained a statesmanly, pioneering initiative that could have been taken only by him. The situation then was grave with parliament attack in the background and two armies in combat position. Vajpayee sensed the mood of Kashmir and extended his hand of friendship to Pakistan”. Naeem believed Manmohan Singh too could have done a lot but circumstances did not help him. He observes, “Dr Manmohan Singh made serious attempt to build on it but Mumbai atrocities provided grist to the mill of the opponents of peace process. Things in Kashmir too reversed and the tempo for peace could not sustain”. At present things are nowhere close to where Vajpayee had left. “The renewed effort still looks hesitant and reserved unlike Vajpayee's repeated attempts, Bus yatra, Agra and the 2003 Srinagar initiative”, says Naeem. There is no one doubting the sincerity of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in breaking ice in Kashmir but many feels that renewal of peace process needs boldness of Vajpayee. According to Mohammad Ashraf, a widely read columnist on Kashmir affairs, “Vajpayee's initiative was honest and forthright. He wanted to go down in history as a man who brought a change to the strife torn subcontinent”. Ashraf adds, “Manmohan Singh, though honest and sincere is operating with his hands tied behind his back by Sonia and BJP! To be bold, one must not think but act regardless of personal consequences”. The question here is will Manmohan Singh be able to do so”. “I doubt it”, says Ashraf.

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Political Economy of Prime Ministerial Visits DIPANKER SENGUPTA

A

casual observer of Jammu and Kashmir will have noted that Prime Ministerial Visits to state are generally incomplete without the announcement of an “economic package” ostensibly to set a region long ravaged by militancy back on rails. The size of these “packages” running into thousands of crores evoke emotions form awe to impatience and even anger. Many argue that bad money after good is being spent in trying to “bribe” the rebellious “natives” into submission and that “money can't buy you love” ie it is idle to think that such largesse can curb dissatisfaction that is so widespread in the valley. Others aver that a careful analysis of these “packages” reveal that by and large the bulk of the money spent does little to enhance the productive capacity of the state and is actually spent on projects that of national importance where the state per se is not the direct beneficiary. Where then does the truth lie? Does it like the proverbial cliché “lie somewhere in between?” The problem is somewhat more complex and suggest that the answer not only lies somewhere in between but also lies somewhere else. When Prime Ministerial announcements on economic packages for Jammu and Kashmir are concerned, the can be divided into two phases. The first set of announcements took place when the National Conference ruled the state (1996-2002) while the second set of announcements belong to the period

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Where is the deal for common man? The political economy of Prime Ministerial visits accompanied by announcements of largesse has given rise to a curious collective of persons and groups with a common economic interest. They range from a coterie of local contractors to militant groups, elements of India's Engineering industry and local politicians who gain if this system of packages sanctified by Prime Ministerial association continues. It does little for the state's economy which requires improvement in road and power infrastructure. The PM packages have done very little on the ground in this respect. This is hardly surprising. A state that collects only a fraction of what it spends on power will never be able to maintain far less upgrade its power infrastructure. On the other hand poor governance and corruption on roads ensure that communications remain poor. The turnaround in state's economic profile with inclusive benefits for all is still awaited that lasts to this day. During the earlier period there was in place a state government headed by a Party that had

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come to power in an election held under controversial circumstances. It was the first elected government that had assumed office after the onset of militancy in 1990. It had inherited a ravaged economy where the overall climate of insecurity and the the more direct attacks of militants on the economic infrastructure did not augur well for the future. However, at this point in time it was not the economy of the state that was the top most priority for policy makers; it was the security situation that was given top priority. To be sure, even as early as 1998, the state and the centre came out with a slew of announcements trying to attract investment to the state. But these were more in the form of concessions to be provided if industry actually set up shop. The outflows from the state coffers would materialize only if operations from new investments commenced in the form of subsidies. In that sense the direct recipient would be the investor and not the state of Jammu and Kashmir. In so far as tax holidays were concerned, this would be a notional loss where new industries were concerned as none was being collected from economic activity that had not yet been started. The Prime Ministerial announcements of “economic packages” that would be more common place later had not yet come into vogue. The first set of announcements during a Prime Ministerial visit came at a

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The first set of announcements during a Prime Ministerial visit came at a time when no explicit plan or time frame had been set to bring back the economy that was in tatters back to rails. The announcement of a mega-package was made in May 2002, by the then PM Atal Behari Vajpayee when he unveiled a Rs 6615 crore economic package for the state. What was the state's gain? Who were the beneficiaries of this package? The answer may be gleaned from what Vajpayee revealed in the press conference itself. Elaborating on the plan Vajpayee said the 3600 crores would be spent on the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramullah rail-link, 1530 crores on road construction in the state and 70 crores on the handicrafts industry of the state. While it may be argued that the state as a whole tended to benefit from all of these three projects, it is clear that this would benefit the state only in the long run after the successful completion of these projects time when no explicit plan or time frame had been set to bring back the economy that was in tatters back to rails. The announcement of a megapackage was made in May 2002, by the then PM Atal Behari Vajpayee when he unveiled a Rs 6615 crore economic package for the state. What was the state's gain? Who were the beneficiaries of this package? The answer may be gleaned from what Vajpayee revealed in the press conference itself. Elaborating on the plan Vajpayee said the 3600 crores would be spent on the Udhampur-

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Srinagar-Baramullah rail-link, 1530 crores on road construction in the state and 70 crores on the handicrafts industry of the state. While it may be argued that the state as a whole tended to benefit from all of these three projects, it is clear that this would benefit the state only in the long run after the successful completion of these projects. The proposed rail link will really make its presence felt after it is fully implemented or at least when the Qazikund-Udhampur link is completed. This is also largely true for the roads in question. In the short run however, as these projects got under way, the financial beneficiaries would be the suppliers of the relevant matériel (located almost wholly outside the state) and the contractors hired to implement the job. In so far as these contractors or even sub-contractors were from the state and hired local labour, one could expect incomes in the state to rise somewhat. As things have turned out, while many of the contractors and sub-contractors have been local, the proportion of labourers from other states has been disproportionately high. Thus the immediate impact of this policy was to create a narrow class of immensely concentrated wealth but without any increase in the productive capacity of the state. It may be argued that this class of contractors were not seen to have acquired these contracts in a manner that could be described as “above board.” Thus there may even have been social sanction when there were extortion bids. Thus local contractors heavily dependent on hired labour from other states maintained a regular system of “payments” so that their labourers would not be touched. This is the genesis of a new political economy whereby funds meant to put the state back on the rails actually ended up in the hands of those who

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had de-railed it in the first instance! The second phase of the Prime Ministerial announcements commenced in 2004 when there were new governments in both New Delhi (The UPA coalition under Dr Manmohan Singh) and in Srinagar (The PDP-Congress and others coalition led by the Mufti Mohammad Sayeed) The first announcement in this regard was of course the 24,000 Crore rupees “economic revival” plan that Dr Manmohan Singh committed to fund. The scale of this “plan” put previous

The second phase of the Prime Ministerial package commenced in 2004 when there were new governments in both New Delhi (The UPA coalition under Dr Manmohan Singh) and in Srinagar (The PDPCongress and others coalition led by the Mufti Mohammad Sayeed) The first announcement in this regard was of course the 24,000 Crore rupees “economic revival” plan that Dr Manmohan Singh committed to fund. The scale of this “plan” put previous announcements to shade. A crude calculation would show that this meant two lakh rupees to very permanent resident of Jammu & Kashmir. However crude calculations are just what they are: crude and in this case misleading. Of the Rs 24,000 crores 75% was to be channelized by the NHPC Ltd to construct Hydel projects in Uri and Baglihar. The power from these projects when completed (years from now) would be for the entire country with Jammu and Kashmir possibly receiving a small share free of cost

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announcements to shade. A crude calculation would show that this meant two lakh rupees to very permanent resident of Jammu and Kashmir state. However crude calculations are just what they are: crude and in this case misleading. Of the Rs 24,000 crores 75% was to be channelized by the NHPC Ltd to construct Hydel projects in Uri and Baglihar. The power from these projects when completed (years from now) would be for the entire country with Jammu and Kashmir possibly receiving a small share free of cost. The immediate beneficiaries as before would be again the suppliers of the relevant matĂŠriel (located almost wholly outside the state) in Jammu and Kashmir would of course be a coterie of contractors dependent on labour and expertise from other states. Thus the political economy of state patronage was

strengthened by the continuation of this policy. The amount to be spent on the upgradation of the transmission and distribution system of the state was according to some observers spent on the northern grid itself. The 20,000 jobs announced in that package were to be funded by the centre for a period of one year and thereafter their liability was to be bourne by the state government and approximate expenditure of at least 500 crores every year. It must be pointed out that Mufti's government did not object. In sum, the political economy of Prime Ministerial visits accompanied by announcements of largesse has given rise to a curious collective of persons and groups with a common economic interest. They range from a coterie of local contractors to militant groups, elements of India's

Engineering industry and local politicians who gain if this system of packages sanctified by Prime Ministerial association continues. It does little for the state's economy which requires improvement in road and power infrastructure. The PM packages have done little on the ground in this respect. This is hardly surprising. A state that collects only a fraction of what it spends on power will never be able to maintain far less upgrade its power infrastructure. On the other hand poor governance and corruption on roads ensure that communications remain poor. Thus it is not Prime Ministerial visits and their perverse influence on the political economy of the state that policy makers should look to. They may do better by looking in another direction: Himachal Pradesh.

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Full Texts of Speeches

Atal Behari Vajpayee Prime Minister University of Kashmir, Srinagar, April 22, 2003

I

am pleased to be with all of you today at the 16th Convocation of the University of Kashmir. I am aware of the honour of following in the footsteps of many great personalities, beginning with Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India who also addressed the first convocation of your university. I welcome the opportunity of congratulating everyone receiving a degree or distinction or honour at this convocation. Today is an occasion for you to express your gratitude to all those who prepared you to enter the most important phase of your life - a life of challenges as well as opportunities. The education that you have received no doubt equips you to shape your own personal career. But it also enables you to determine how you wish to contribute to creating a better future for India and for your own beautiful state. Convocation may connote the end of formal education, but not of education as such. Learning is a life-long activity. Prophet Mohammed exhorted everyone, woman and man alike, to pursue learning from cradle to grave, and to cross every frontier to seek ilm (knowledge). It is a happy coincidence that your university is located near Hazaratbal, which is made famous by its association with the Prophet of Islam. The very fact that this convocation is taking place after a gap of six long years is an indication of the troubled times in which you had to study, your teachers had to teach, and the administrators of

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your university had to function. But a student is one who remains devoted to learning in spite of all the turbulence around him. Indeed, in learning about the subjects of their respective courses, students also learn about the turbulence around them. They intensely reflect on how it may one day be tamed so that the garden of knowledge rides out the storm, and future generations may savour that garden's most cherished fruit: Peace. Friends, anyone who experiences the beauty and serenity of Jammu & Kashmir is bound to conclude that God has been partial to this place, making it the Paradise on Earth. However, the same person, looking at the strife and violence that have marred the state's tranquillity, might also wonder: why has peace eluded this Paradise for so long? It is a question that needs to be objectively studied by all those who care for peace, and who care for Kashmir. An unprejudiced examination of facts would reveal that the ideologies that support militancy, terrorism and separatism find no support whatsoever in the social history, cultural identity and spiritual traditions of Kashmir. Kashmir, like the rest of India, has been the respecter of all spiritual streams and alchemist of all cultural influences. It has accepted all that is noble in mankind's creation, and rejected none. The interaction of the three great religions of Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam on the soil of Kashmir saw a soaring of the human spirit, propagating far and wide

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the ideals of humanism, tolerance, communal harmony and peace among the people. It is necessary and useful for us to remember that Sufi Islam arrived here neither as a conqueror nor as a competitor, but as an ally to Kashmir's existing spiritual tradition. Shiv chuy thali thali rozan; Mo zan Hindu ta Musalman. Truk ay chuk pan panun parzanav; Soy chay Sahibas sati zaniy zan. (Shiv or Allah - lives everywhere; do not divide Hindu from Muslim. Use your sense to recognise yourself; that is the true way to find God.) Thus sang Kashmir's greatest mystic poetess in one of her thousands of shlokas or waakhs that are a part of the folklore of this land. If she was Lalla Arifa for the Muslims, she was Lalleshwari for the Hindus. But for all the Kashmiris, she remains, even after 800 years, their own much-loved Lal Ded, the symbol as well as the source of Kashmiriyat. It is only in Kashmir that the Rishi order recognises Hindu and Muslim spiritual masters alike. Nooruddin Shaikh, the greatest saint of Kashmir, is also known as Nand Rishi. His appeal to the people 'to break the sword and forge it into a sickle' reads as if it is coined not only for Kashmir of today but also for the world of today. These saints are remembered and revered even today because, Kashmir, like the rest of India, places saints and social reformers on a higher pedestal than kings, shahs and sultans. And if Kashmir does adore a king, it adores one like Zainul Abedin or Bud Shah, who led Kashmir into its

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Golden Age in the 15th century. Here was an ideal ruler whose second name was justice; who led a simple life and refused to touch the state treasury for his personal needs; who honoured pandits and maulvis alike; and who founded a Dar-ul-Aloom, equivalent to a university, which patronised learning in all branches. In our own times, poets like the Shayar-e-Kashmir Ghulam Ahmed Mehjoor have forcefully voiced the message of peace and brotherhood. Today I would like to recall one of Mehjoor's couplets, which I had quoted in my Independence Day speech in 2001. Clearly, if Muslim is milk, Hindu is sugar; let the two mix together; Discard discord and love each other. Didn't Swami Vivekananda also express the same thought, after he returned from a memorable visit to Kashmir? Replying to a letter from a maulvi, Swamiji wrote his famous words: 'I see in my mind's eye the future perfect India rising out of this chaos and strife, glorious and invincible, with Vedanta brain and Islam body.' I have recalled certain names and facts from Kashmir's history only to underscore my belief that the tradition of brotherhood is not something that belongs to Kashmir's past. It is also a part of its living present. The outpouring of shock, grief, and anger that marked Kashmiri Muslims' response to the recent massacre of pandits at Nadimarg is just one example of this. It is the responsibility of academicians, scholars, artists, cultural personalities, mass media and political workers to highlight the age-old traditions of communal harmony and national unity in Kashmir and the rest of India. We should affirm that death and destruction cannot always claim supremacy over life and creation, that darkness cannot keep light away forever. In affirming this, we should take inspiration from the motto of your university. Tamaso ma jyotirgamaya. (Lead

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us, O Lord, from Darkness to Light.) It is a highly appropriate motto. On the one hand, it captures the timeless wisdom of Kashmir, the land from where Khudayi Noor or the Heavenly Light is being radiated since time immemorial. On the other, it also reflects the historic transition from darkness to light that is now taking place in your state. My current visit to Kashmir has reinforced my belief that darkness and despair are, indeed, departing; that Light and Hope are, indeed, arriving. Indeed, one such bright ray of hope was visible when the people of Jammu & Kashmir expressed their will in a heroic and unmistakable manner in the Assembly elections held six months ago. Through the power of democracy, they gave a ringing verdict against the militancy and terrorist violence unleashed against us from across the border for the past decade and more. Defying threats and violence, they turned out in impressive numbers to exercise their franchise. As far as the Central government is concerned, we fulfilled our promise that the elections would be transparent, free and fair. They were indeed deemed to be so by the whole world, except those who have their own ulterior agenda to project the elections in a different light. The verdict has clearly shown that the vast majority of the people are fed up with violence. They want to live a normal life, a life of dignity. They voted for change, good governance, faster development, more employment opportunities and, above all, for peace to return to their state. They reposed their faith in our democratic institutions and electoral processes. They will not be disappointed. The elections and their aftermath have given us a great opportunity to build upon the positive elements in the current situation. The newly elected government has taken several good initiatives and measures. The Central government is committed to

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“Unprecedented resources have been committed to the State for its comprehensive reconstruction. But I recognize that the benefits are trickling down slowly. This state of affairs should change. We have to speed up the pace of development in the state…When I came to office in 2004, I had said that our Government is committed to having unconditional dialogue with whoever abjures violence. We had discussions with different groups. We had a number of round table conferences. All issues were discussed. We tried to give voice to the demands of all sections of the people. We have implemented a number of initiatives as a result of this process… I wish to say again today that we are willing to talk to anyone who has any meaningful ideas for promoting peace and development in Kashmir” Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in his speech after launching AnantnagQazigund stretch of rail line, Anantnag, October 28, 2009

“I am glad that after a difficult period, Jammu and Kashmir is progressing well on the road to development and peace. Wideranging initiatives are being implemented to revitalize the state's economy and to build a new peaceful and prosperous Jammu and Kashmir. It is important that the development process is inclusive and covers all parts of the State as well as all sections of the population” Pratibha Devisingh Patil President of India At The Convocation of Sher-I-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, 23rd May 2008 Epilogue, July 2010


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B' naam-e-khuda-vand jaan aafarin Hakim-e-sukhan dar zubaan aafarin ---Auron ka hai payam aur, mera payaam aur hai Ishq ke dard mand ka tarz-ekalaam aur hai -----Jab tak na zindagi ke haqaiq pe ho nazar Tera zajaj ho na sake ga hareef-e-sang. The focus, above all, has to be on self development: Taamir-e-khudi kar, asar aahe rasa daikh. Mohammad Hamid Ansari Vice President of India In his address on 17th Annual Convocation of the University of Kashmir, Srinagar on 20th June 2009

I would like to say that I am delighted to be in the historic city of Jammu. It is said that this city was founded when Rajah Jambhu Lochan, while on a hunting expedition crossed the River Tawi and discovered a tiger and a goat drinking from the same tank. When he queried from his aides about this rather unusual sight, they are believed to have explained to him that the soil of the place excelled in virtue and for that reason no living creature bore enmity against another. The people of this city are the inheritors of this remarkable tradition of living together in peace and harmony. It is a matter of pride that this heritage has been kept alive. As a nation, we commend your approach of accommodation and pluralism. Pratibha Devisingh Patil President of India Sher-I-Kashmir University Of Agricultural Sciences And Technology Jammu, May 26, 2008 www.epilogue.in

working sincerely with the state government and give it all reasonable assistance. We have also started a process of talks with the elected representatives and other sections of public opinion in the state. I believe - and I would like one and all in Jammu & Kashmir to share this belief - that there is no problem which cannot be resolved peacefully and democratically. Today, our sincere commitment to bring peace and normalcy to Jammu & Kashmir makes me admit that we have often faltered in our journey towards this goal. It was sometimes forgotten that democracy is too delicate a plant to be subjected to manipulation and mishandling. We must learn from these mistakes and resolve not to repeat them. We should look to the future with a constructive approach, and not remain obsessed with the acrimonies and unrealistic goals of the past. Today, I would also like to caution that, in order to prevent the youth from being misled or driven into negative activities, we must ensure that they do not lose faith in our institutions, in the fairness of our systems and in the rule of law. Therefore, good governance and an effective check on corruption and nepotism are of prime importance in the task of nation building - and building a new Jammu & Kashmir. Our political leadership, cutting across party lines, should also see that our youth do not get carried away by ethnic or religious extremism or fundamentalist ideologies. My young fri-ends, your state, like the rest of India, is beckoned by a bright future. Our country is making rapid strides in agriculture, industry, infrastructure and services. What has especially astonished the international community is the remarkable progress that our country has made in science and technology, and in frontier areas of the Knowledge Economy. One such icon of the Knowledge Economy, Shri N.R. Narayan Murthy, is with us today. I appreciate

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your university's decision to honour him with D. Litt. I hope that he and his fraternity would suitably assist promotion of employment and entrepreneurship in IT in Jammu & Kashmir. The main focus of the reforms agenda pursued by the government is creation of large-scale employment, self-employment and business opportunities in diverse areas of our economy. Today it is neither necessary nor feasible to seek only government jobs. Therefore, I would like young graduates from this university to fully seize these opportunities in India and abroad. Indeed, I would like to see more employment opportunities created in Jammu & Kashmir itself. In recent years, there has been a welcome trend of more and more young students from Kashmir going to universities and colleges in different parts of the country to pursue higher education. I would like the UGC, ministry of human resource development, and nongovernmental educational institutions to create many more opportunities of this kind for students from this state. Your vice chancellor has rightly pointed out the inadequacy of Kashmir Valley, with a population of over 50 lakh, having only one university. Today I would like to assure that the idea of establishing more professional institutions and Kendriya Vidyalayas would receive our serious and sympathetic consideration. Here, too, I call upon reputed nongovernmental institutions in the rest of the country to come forward. I was in Sikkim last week. A prestigious educational institution from Manipal in Karnataka has established a medical college there. The Centre and the state government can encourage similar initiatives in your state. I am pleased to know that yours is the only university in India that has a dedicated Centre for Central Asian Studies. When I look at Kashmir, I find that both geographically and historically, it links India to the

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lands and peoples of a very important part of Asia. We are deeply interested in strengthening our ties of friendship and mutually beneficial cooperation with all of them. In particular, we are adding a new dimension to our external relations by deepening and broadening our traditionally friendly ties with all the countries of Central Asia. We call it the 'New Silk Route Initiative'. I was in Kazakhstan last year to attend the first ever summit meeting to discuss issues pertaining to security and cooperation in Central Asia. I would like the academics working in your university to make a solid contribution to this effort. My dear students and teachers, as I said at the beginning of my address, this convocation is taking place at an important point almost a turning point - in the history of Jammu & Kashmir. India is a vast country with a rich diversity of religion, language, and ethnicity. But there is a silken civilisational thread that has woven a priceless unity in this diversity. The same thread of unity also runs through the three main regions of your state Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh. Our secular democracy has further strengthened our nationhood. The destiny of the people of Jammu & Kashmir is inseparably tied to the destiny of India. Let there be no doubt that a bright future awaits us. I call upon the students and teachers of this great university, and all the people of this beautiful state, to march towards this bright future, together with your sisters and brothers in the rest of India, with hope in your hearts and unity in your steps. Thank you.

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Dr MANMOHAN SINGH Prime Minister University of Jammu, Jammu July 15, 2007

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am honoured and delighted to receive the Degree of Doctor of Letters (Honoris Causa) that has just been conferred on me. I have received similar honours before but your gesture is very special for me. This beautiful state of Jammu and Kashmir has always had a special place in my heart. More recently, its development and well-being have been on top of my agenda in government. Let me say, at the very outset, that I have been impressed by the remarkable strides that the University of Jammu has made in recent years. I compliment you all, especially your dynamic ViceChancellor, Prof Amitabh Mattoo. The steps taken by your university to establish itself as a centre for excellence are impressive. I commend the university's achievements in teaching and research, especially in fields like high-energy physics, glaciology, biotechnology and strategic studies. I am also happy that the university has actively participated in extension work, in partnership with civil society, in disaster management, empowerment of rural women and the efforts at strengthening the region's culture of tolerance and peace. It is precisely this blend of academic excellence, social relevance and aesthetic sensibility that our universities must nurture. Our country has a 5,000-year-old history of the human quest for knowledge. Ours has always been a knowledge society. The challenge is now to transform it into a knowledge economy. It is clear that our greatest strength, in years to come, will

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be our human resources. Our huge pool of young women and men, adequately skilled, can become India's greatest force for progress. I have always believed that it is this soft power, not just military strength, which will be the real marker of India's greatness. And I am confident that Jammu and Kashmir's young men and women will become a shining example of this soft power. I am, therefore, here to seek your partnership in building Jammu and Kashmir into a robust and vibrant knowledge economy. As a partner, I commit myself and our government, to creating institutions of excellence in the state, which can channelise the creativity and energy of the youth of Jammu and Kashmir. We will together build and strengthen a cadre of extraordinarily skilled men and women who are dedicated to a vision of a peaceful and prosperous Jammu and Kashmir. That alone is a guarantee for sustainable peace in the state. Many new and imaginative initiatives have been taken by the state government, including the opening of a large number of degree colleges and the universities of Jammu and Kashmir have opened off-site campuses in Bhaderwah, Kathua, Udhampur, Baramullah and Anantnag. Campuses are also being proposed for Leh, Poonch, Ramnagar and Reasi. Much more needs to be done, both in terms of access as well as the quest for excellence. The Knowledge Commission, in its recent report, has recommended a vast expansion of our higher education system. I have

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“As Prime Minister, this is my first Convocation Address and I am delighted that I am speaking to a community of doctors and health specialists….. Today, I want to speak in particular to the young men and women of Kashmir and address a subject that concerns us all: the future of Kashmir. I have come here not to lecture, but to seek your partnership in the building of a Naya Kashmir…. You are all the real stakeholders in the future of Kashmir, and it is only through your enthusiastic participation that a 'new' Kashmir can truly be built. Several decades ago, a bold vision of Naya Kashmir had been spelt out. The time has come to put forward a new blueprint, a fresh vision for Kashmir and for the Kashmiri people, free from the fear of war, want and exploitation…. When I met President Musharraf of Pakistan last month, I impressed on him the need for our two countries to work together to create the conditions for sustainable peace in South Asia. Our Government is committed to a purposeful dialogue with Pakistan to resolve all outstanding issues. Our only condition is that, as agreed to by Pakistan, territory under control of Pakistan should not be used to promote cross border terrorism directed against us” Dr Manmohan Singh Prime Minister Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences Srinagar, November 17, 2004

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recently announced that we intend to establish 30 new central universities across the country. I would like at least one of them to be in this state. We also need to address the problems of the educated unemployed, especially in Jammu and Kashmir. In the new globally competitive environment, it is essential to keep upgrading skills, build first-rate infrastructure in our institutions and ensure top quality of teaching and training. Fortunately, with the latest developments in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) it is possible to create such facilities quickly, and with relatively little investment. We could consider setting up knowledge centres at the district headquarter level in Jammu and Kashmir. These centres could be equipped with the latest ICT facilities, be fully networked and offer courses that would upgrade skills to a world class level, especially in the field of software where there is a huge shortage of professionals. Many of these courses could be offered through video-conferencing or through web-casts and other electronic means. Students from the centres would be so well trained that they would be able to secure employment anywhere, from Srinagar to the Silicon Valley. The universities in the state can be the nodal institutions for managing these knowledge centres. The National Knowledge Commission has proposed creating such a network to connect all universities, libraries, laboratories, hospitals and agricultural institutions to share data and resources across the country. These knowledge centres would be part of such a network. We also need to revitalize the spirit of entrepreneurship that Jammu has been famous for all over northern India. Jammu has been known as a city of free enterprise: of job-creators and

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not jobseekers, and we hope that this tradition can be sustained and further strengthened. Universities can play a vital role in this through a structured academia-industry interface, and by setting up business-development incubators, which can facilitate start-ups and new business ventures. Jammu has another legacy that it can be rightly proud of. All of you know that the city is believed to have been founded when Rajah Jambhu Lochan, on a hunting expedition and crossing the river Tawi, discovered a tiger and a goat drinking water from the same tank. When he sought an explanation, his aides are believed to have explained that the "soil of the place excelled in virtue and for that reason no living creature bore enmity against another". It is this remarkable tradition of pluralism that all of you have inherited, and which sustains itself even today. I know that over these years you have welcomed, with open arms, thousands of migrants, refugees and displaced people. These include the large number of Kashmiri Pandits, but also refugees from POK (Pakistan occupied Kashmir) and Pakistan. I assure all of them that our government is committed to their proper rehabilitation and ensuring that they get equal rights. I salute the people of Jammu for maintaining a culture of peace and tolerance during difficult times. You know that the problems of Jammu and Kashmir have been receiving my personal attention. I have chaired three roundtable conferences at which almost the full spectrum of public and political opinion in the state has been represented. The roundtable has emerged as an effective platform for addressing all the concerns of the people of Jammu and Kashmir. I am sorry that some groups have so far opted to stay away. I hope they will come to rec-

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ognize the historic significance and the transparent sincerity of the Roundtable process and will join it in future. At the last conference, the reports of four of the working-groups that had been set up were presented and discussed. We are presently working on these recommendations. I am looking forward to the fifth report on CentreState relations. All of us have to show both wisdom and creativity in dealing with the issues at hand. I hope this report will also address the issue of effective devolution of powers among different regions within the state. The aspirations of all sections of the people in each of the three regions of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh must be taken into account, and a common understanding reached on ways of meeting all these aspirations. I believe it is possible to pursue the development of a united state of Jammu & Kashmir even while respecting and addressing the legitimate aspirations of the people of each of the three regions. I wish to highlight a larger point here today. There comes a time in the history of a people, when they are energized enough to make history. For sixty years we have lived with tension and periods of violence, both internally and in our relations with Pakistan. You all know, better than anyone else, the tragic consequences of war, terrorism, conflict and displacement. It is time to make a genuine effort to build peace and create the conditions for a historic reconciliation of hearts and minds in our region. And I believe young people, without any bitter memories, and full of hope and energy, are the ones who can lead the change. Jammu and Kashmir is the finest expression of the idea of India. Diversity of faith, culture, geography and language has traditionally never been a source of conflict. In fact the people of this state have generally

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celebrated diversity and lived in harmony for most of the time. We now need to revive those bonds and that spirit of accommodation and mutual respect even while we sit down, in good faith, to resolve many of our genuine differences. My vision, as I have stated before, is to build a "naya" (new) Jammu and Kashmir which is symbolized by peace, prosperity and people's power. You are all the real stakeholders in the future of Jammu and Kashmir, and it is only through your energetic participation that a "naya" Jammu and Kashmir can truly be built. As I have often said, real empowerment is not about slogans. Only when every man, woman and child from Ladakh to Lakhanpur and from Kargil to Kathua through Kashmir feels secure, in every sense of the word, can we truly say that people have been empowered. Security is freedom from fear and this is what we wish to achieve. We would like the people of Jammu and Kashmir to be free from all fears about their future. It is only this sense of comprehensive security, within a framework of good governance that can really empower the people. We would like the people to be physically secure and this can only happen if violence and terrorism end permanently. We seek to ensure that the people are economically secure and this can only happen if the tremendous potential of the state is channelised and every citizen has access to quality education and health care. We would like every group to be politically secure and this can only happen once power is decentralized to the villages. Finally, we would like that every community is culturally and socially secure. This means that we value the cultural distinctiveness of every community and create conditions for the flowering of their languages, their life styles and their arts and crafts.

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“Today, I visited the forward areas and had the opportunity to see all of you working with great vigil. Your discipline, patriotism, dedication and spirit of sacrifice are worthy of emulation. In fact, your bravery, courage and dedication have established high standards for the Nation. It is because of these qualities that the Indian Army is considered as one of the leading armies of the world” Pratibha Devisingh Patil President of India Addressing soldiers at a special Sainik Sammellan, Baramulla, north Kashmir, May 23, 2009

I do realize that the people of the state are put to a certain degree of inconvenience because of the prevailing security situation. But it must be understood that this scenario is the result of the ongoing actions of certain elements who disturb the peace in the state. I have instructed the security forces to be more mindful of human rights and be sensitive to the liberties and self respect of ordinary people. At the same time, it is our collective responsibility to create an atmosphere where the people of the state can be free from the fear of oppression and terrorist activities and can go about their normal lives like their fellow countrymen. If this requires strengthening the state police – both in numbers and materially – the central government would be willing to support that. Dr Manmohan Singh Prime Minister Closing remarks, second J&K roundtable conference Srinagar, May 25, 2006 Epilogue, July 2010


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This vision of empowerment and comprehensive security is related to good governance and people's active participation in formulating policies and monitoring their implementation. When power flows to the grassroots and every community gets space, there will be no sense of discrimination. I appeal, therefore, to the people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh to join hands in building a glorious future for young people. Our dialogue with Pakistan seeks to end the bitter legacy of the last 60 years, and begin a new chapter in our bilateral relations. I hope and believe that Jammu and Kashmir can, one day, become a symbol of India-Pakistan cooperation rather than of conflict. As I have stated earlier, borders cannot be changed, but they can be made irrelevant. There can no be question of divisions or partitions, but the Line of Control can become a line of peace with a freer flow of ideas, goods, services and people. The natural resources of the state could then be used for the benefit of the people. They need no longer be points of contention or a source of conflict. We could, for instance, use the land and water resources of the region jointly for the benefit of all the people living on both sides of the LOC. Similarly, there are vast opportunities to jointly work together for the mutual benefit of our people. It goes without saying that this can only happen once terrorism and violence end permanently. I have said this before and I say it again, real political power in a democracy comes from the ballot box, not the barrel of a gun. We are firm in our resolve to fight terrorism and to end the blackmail of terror in this peace-loving State. We are committed to winning the hearts and minds of all. We will never allow anyone to stop the heartbeat of a peace-loving people in whatever cause. We will also continue our dialogue with Pakistan, despite difficulties, in this spirit because I genuinely believe that there is no alternative to building peace. I also know that the yearning for peace is most intensely felt here.

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Dr MANMOHAN SINGH Prime Minister Sher-E-Kashmir University for Agriculture, Science and Technology of Kashmir, Srinagar June 7, 2010

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I have had the opportunity to visit the beautiful state of Jammu and Kashmir every year in the past six years. Like every other occasion, I am very happy to be here with you this time too. I am especially happy to be amongst the academic fraternity of Jammu and Kashmir. On any such occasion, I recall my early days as a teacher as well as a student. It is my belief that there is no profession nobler than teaching. The development of our nation is to a large extent the responsibility of our teachers. I salute the entire teaching fraternity today. Those engaged in imparting higher education often have to work in adverse conditions, which include insufficient funds, inadequate infrastructure and other difficulties. Our young women and men are the future of our country and we have high expectations from them. You are in a vibrant India which is ready to take on the challenges of tomorrow. My generation would not have even dreamt of the opportunities and convenience of technology available in the country today. I am of the firm opinion that in the years to come the avenues available for your intellectual, emotional, cultural and professional development will multiply manifold in a new, strong Jammu and Kashmir and

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India. Your institution is of great importance for Jammu and Kashmir in many ways. There is a lot of scope for improvement in the field of agriculture and horticulture in the state. The Sher-e-kashmir University can contribute substantially in these areas. Over three fourths of the population of the state is engaged in occupations related to land. In rural areas irrigation facilities are inadequate, in many parts there is severe cold and shortage of fodder etc. for six months in a year. The agricultural productivity in the state is low and there is little value addition after harvest. To overcome these problems, the Sher-e-Kashmir University can play an important role in improving technology in areas such as crop production, horticulture, cattle rearing, fishery, sericulture and agricultural education. The university in the past has contributed substantially to technological upgradation for temperate and cold desert regions of the country. In recognition of its contribution and in view of its importance to the development of the state, the central government will provide a special grant of Rs. 100 crore to the university. Last month, I met Dr. Shah Faisal, a young doctor from Kashmir. His father was a teacher who lost his

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life to the violence in the state. Dr. Faisal has made the entire state proud by standing first in the Civil Services Examination. He received all his education in institutions of Jammu and Kashmir. His success is proof that the educational institutions in the state are no less than other educational institutions of our country. My best wishes are with Dr. Faisal. I also greet the other students from Jammu and Kashmir who have succeeded in the Civil Services Examination of the UPSC. A bright future awaits these youngsters. I believe that they will inspire all of us to work for a better tomorrow. I expect many more such achievements from the students of the state. I pray for a successful career for all of you. However, I am also concerned that many youth from Jammu and Kashmir and especially from Srinagar feel disillusioned due to the lack of economic opportunities. I can imagine the disillusionment of those who have received education in premier institutions like the Sher-e-Kashmir University and yet cannot find good employment. In cooperation with the State Government, we will make every possible effort to create adequate employment opportunities in Jammu and Kashmir. Many of you have participated in the 2009 assembly elections. A young leadership has emerged out of the elections. I am very happy that today both the central and the state governments are working together on major issues related to Jammu and Kashmir. The central government will extend all possible assistance to the state to accelerate its pace of economic development. In 2004, our Government had launched a programme for economic reconstruction and development of the state. The programme was prepared by leading economists of our country. There is special emphasis in this plan on

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enabling the local youth to make use of their education to contribute to the progress of the state. We felt that the people of the state are not only interested in financial assistance and development projects but also desire a political process that meets their aspirations. In view of this, we convened three Round Table Conferences. In these Conferences we took care to include as many civil society and political groups from the state as possible. Several recommendations have emerged out of the deliberations in these conferences and we are implementing them in a stepwise manner. We wish to carry forward the process of dialogue and we are ready to hold talks with the representative of any group which shuns violence and terror. As a result of our efforts, Rail services have commenced in the Kashmir valley. Work is on full swing to provide rail connectivity to Banihal pass and the difficult terrain ahead of it. The Mughal road has been opened for single lane traffic now and nearly half of the work is complete for its double laning. As far as power generation is concerned, I am happy that the 450 megawatt Baglihar-I power project has been commissioned. The Centre has decided to link Ladakh with the National grid and the Union Cabinet has given a go ahead to the Rs. 473 crore Ladakh Renewable Energy Initiative. All 14 degree colleges sanctioned under the Prime Minister's economic reconstruction programme have started working. Six out of nine ITIs for girls have been completed. Thousands of employment opportunities have been generated in the Central Para Military forces, under National Rural Health Mission, in Railways and in many other government departments. But I believe that there is still more to be done. Good work has been done under

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''Decisive battle against crossborder terrorism.'' The Prime Minister said the national goal of development was being subverted by the proxy war being forced on the country. ''We must be prepared for sacrifices. Our goal is victory. It's time to wage a decisive battle,'' he told the troops. Mr Vajpayee noted with some satisfaction that the world understood that injustice was being done to India. ''World opinion is on our side, but they are not saying so openly. We will have to defend ourselves on our own and we are prepared for this,'' he said. Mr Vajpayee reiterated that India wanted peace and not war. ''But war is being thrust on us and we'll face it. Let there be no doubt about it. A challenge has been thrown to India and we accept it,'' he said, adding, ''My arrival here is indicative of something. Whether our neighbour understands it or not, whether the world takes note of it or not, history will recall that we will write a new chapter of victory... There is no doubt about it Atal Behari Vajpayee Prime Minister Addressing troops in Kupwara, May 22, 2002

Rakht kusha ba-Kashmer, kohe talo-daman mee-gar Sabza jahaan jahaan bibeen, laleh chaman chaman ni-gar MOHAMMAD HAMID ANSARI Vice President of India Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Kashmir, on 25 November 2007 at Srinagar. Epilogue, July 2010


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While I have visited the Jammu & Kashmir several times and wide ranging initiatives are already being implemented to revitalize the economy of the State and to bring about improvements on many fronts, we need to continue to work closely together to further carry forward our efforts to build a new, peaceful and prosperous Jammu & Kashmir. I repeat the simple vision which guides me and which I have articulated to university students in Srinagar. It is a vision of a Naya Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh which is symbolized by peace, prosperity and people's power. Jammu and Kashmir has tremendous economic potential, the talent of its people is unparalleled, and its cultural diversity is unique. It can and must become a model of real empowerment of the people and comprehensive security for them Dr MANMOHAN SINGH Prime Minister Opening remarks, third J&K roundtable New Delhi, April 24, 2007

â&#x20AC;&#x153;I had heard a lot about the pristine natural glory of this region and its description as "Chotta" Kashmir. But I must admit it is even more enchanting than I had expected. Also, Bhaderwah's contribution to the educational and literary life of this State is well known. The great poet of this region, Abdul Qudoos Rasa Javidani as well as educationists and social activists like Ghulam Rasool Azad and Chuni Lal Kotwal are known for their contributions even outside this Stateâ&#x20AC;? Pratibha Devisingh Patil President of India

the State Horticulture Mission in Jammu and Kashmir. Old gardens have been reclaimed and community ponds have been reconstructed. Horticulture and agriculture in the state are benefiting immensely from the central assistance provided under the National Horticulture Mission and the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana. The saffron from the state is famous world over for its use in enhancing the taste of food and for its medicinal properties. I am happy to announce that the government intends to set up a National Mission to look into issues related to research, production, processing and marketing of saffron. In order to help the youth in employment, emphasis has been given to professional training. The Sher-eKashmir Institute of Agricultural Sciences and Technology has trained 385 agriculture graduates and I am pleased to know that they are doing good work. Training has been imparted to youth in Information Technology and nearly 8000 youth will be trained in high technology areas in ITIs. Under the National Youth Corps Scheme training and allowances will be given to nearly 8000 youth. I hope that this will give impetus to skill development in the districts and the entire State. I am told that in Srinagar and other cities people face problems related to power supply, drinking water, roads and ration shops. I am hopeful that the state government will look into these complaints. The central government will extend all possible help to the Jammu Kashmir government in this regard. We have tried our best to promote movement of people and trade on the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad and PoonchRawalkot roads. We now want to take similar steps for the Kargil-Skardu route. You may recall that when I inaugurated the Muzaffarabad bus service, I had hoped that it would just be the

beginning. We have been consistently trying to increase trade and commerce between different parts of Jammu and Kashmir. We want to look at all possible measures to strengthen links between people on both sides of the Line of Control. However, there are a handful of people who do not want any political process for empowering people to succeed. This is the reason that attempts to disturb the lives of the people in the valley still continue from across the line of control. Whenever such incidents happen, they spread terror and cause disruption in the life of people. Our security agencies are forced to act in the wake of such incidents. During the process sometimes innocent civilians have to suffer, but whenever such incidents happen it becomes necessary to act against those responsible for them. I am aware of some complaints related to human rights. On this issue, the Government policy is to protect the human rights of the people even when dealing with terrorism. The security forces in Jammu and Kashmir have been strictly instructed to respect the rights of the civilians. We will act to remove any deficiency in the implementation of these instructions. Today, I would like to say to our neighbours across the line of control that they should help in creating an environment in which people from both the sides can live in peace and harmony and work together. Our issues with Pakistan are well known. Good neighbourly relations between India and Pakistan are in the interest of both the countries. At the same time they are necessary for peace and harmony, stability and development our region. The relations between the two countries over the past one and a half years have been under the shadow of the terror attacks in Mumbai on November 26, 2008. As you are

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aware, I met the Prime Minister of Pakistan in Thimpu last month. Both the countries accepted that there is a trust deficit between us. We also agreed that this distance between the two countries must be reduced. Prime Minister Gilani Saheb has assured me that Pakistan will not allow its soil to be used for terrorist activities against India. Meaningful talks between the two countries, which can lead to a resolution of old issues, are possible only when Pakistan doesn't let its territory be used for acts of terror against India. The destiny of our people is linked to each other. Therefore both the countries should adopt effective ways of co-operation to the benefit of the people of the two countries. A strong, stable and prosperous Pakistan is in the interest of our whole region. I congratulate all students who have received degrees today. I also congratulate those students of Jammu and Kashmir who have continued their studies despite difficulties. I see a bright future for all of you notwithstanding some difficulties that you might face. I wish you all success in life. May God bless your path.â&#x20AC;?

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ATAL BEHARI VAJPAYEE Prime Minister Press Conference, Srinagar May 23, 2002

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am pleased to meet mediapersons at the end of my three-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir. I had stated in Parliament that I would visit J&K after the end of the Budget Session. At the time, I didn't know that two incidents would cast a ring of shock, sorrow and outrage around my visit. My visit began on May 21 when I visited a military hospital in Jammu to meet survivors of the gruesome terrorist attack at Kaluchak on May 14. This attack, first on a Himachal Road Transport bus and later on an Army camp, was carried out by terrorists based and trained in Pakistan. The fact that many of those killed in the carnage were children and women shows the barbaric nature of Pakistan- sponsored cross-border terrorism. On the very day of my arrival came the tragic news of the assassination of Shri Abdul Gani Lone, a respected political figure of Jammu & Kashmir. There is no doubt that Lone was gunned down by the enemies of peace because of his courageous voice against the gun culture, a voice that was beginning to get more and more influential. I join all the peace loving people of J&K in mourning the death of this great son of Kashmir and spirited champion of Kashmiriyat. The terrorist attack at Kaluchak was designed to demoralise the people of India and our security forces. Similarly, the dastardly assassination of Abdul Gani Lone was designed to demoralise and silence the forces of peace, normalcy and democratic dialogue in Jammu and Kashmir. The same sinister design was also evident from the terrorist attacks on J&K Legislative Assembly in Srinagar on October 1 and on the Indian Parliament on December 13. These acts of violence are a part of the twenty-year- long campaign of terrorism, extremism and subversion in J&K and in other parts of India, planned, aided and abetted from across the border. We will not let Pakistan carry on with its this proxy war against India any longer. As I said in my address to our brave jawans at Kupwara yesterday, India has accepted the challenge thrown by our neighbour and we are preparing ourselves for a decisive victory against the enemy. My presence at today's meeting of the unified command in Srinagar, along with our home minister and defence minister, is also intended to convey the message of India's resolve and readiness. Both in Jammu and in Srinagar, I met a large number of delegations belonging to various political parties and social organisations. They also included representatives of Kashmiri pandits and border migrants. There was a ringing common theme in what all of them said to me â&#x20AC;&#x201D; that is, the people of Jammu & Kashmir want peace and normalcy to return at the earliest. Militancy has no future in the state because it has only brought suffering and pain to the people, irrespective of their religion or region. What was also common in the representations made by all the delegations was their eager welcome of the forthcoming elections to the J&K Legislative Assembly and their demand for free and fair polling. My government has already said â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and I reiterate today that we are committed to holding free and fair elections in the state. Governor Shri Girish Chandra Saxena and chief minister Shri Farooq Abdullah have apprised me of the various requirements of the state. In response to what I have heard from the state government and the various delegations, I am pleased to announce a package for J&K covering many development and security issues. The package has a specific focus on generation of employment opportunities for the youth of the state. I have a message for the people of Jammu & Kashmir: Your pain and anguish is mine too. It is shared by all the people of India. We are with you in your sorrow and we will be with you in your joy.

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Nubra Gets Alternate Road Links, Thanks BRO TSEWANG RIGZIN

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he launch of four bridges over Shayok River and on some other major streams between Nubra valley and Durbuk block of Changthang in the last few months by the Border Road Organization (BRO) has provided alternative road connectivity to Nubra valley. The existing road between Nubra and Leh is Khardongla road â&#x20AC;&#x201C; the world's highest motorable road which, especially during the winter months, remains closed for days and weeks because of snowfall and avalanche. This year even until mid June it has been snowing unprecedentedly, causing the closure of Khardongla almost every alternate week. But this time people of Nubra valley as well as hundreds domestic and foreign tourists visiting the valley could use the new road to Nubra from Shayok in Durbuk. The new road of course is longer than Khardongla road by over 100 kilometers, but an option available now. However, this alternative

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road also is not going to provide an all weather connectivity to Nubra valley as this road too gets closed during heavy snowfalls on the Changla top pass â&#x20AC;&#x201C; the next highest motorable road to Khradongla road. It may not be out of place to appreciate and honour those officers who have worked hard to get these four bailey bridges launched in just two months to connect two different regions of Leh Ladakh as this development has brought Nubra and Durbuk regions very close to each other. Some of the important officials of BRO who made this possible in the subzero temperature included Capt Rahul Sharma and Kishori Saw EE (Civil) of the 51 RCC and Commander 753 BRTF Col VS Jeji. The

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team 51 RCC is commanded by its Officer Commanding Kishori Saw of the Project Himank of the Border Road Organization and the Project Himank is headed by the Chief Engineer Brigadier SK Wadhawan. It is pertinent to mention here that when Khardongla road remains closed for days and weeks in winter months, people of Nubra have no other alternative to commute to Leh, the capital city of Ladakh, but to either wait for the road to open or to request the Defence Ministry for sanctioning the airlifting of passengers between Leh and Nubra via Indian Air Force planes. In view of this situation, construction of a tunnel at Khardongla has been a longstanding demand of the people at all levels. A multipurpose tunnel at this place could be used for traffic and well as to divert the Khardongla glacier water for the farmers of Leh.

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Farooq, Omar Review Ladakh's Energy Scenario

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he Union New and Renewable Energy Minister, Dr. Farooq Abdullah took a review meeting with the Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on June 14 at Leh in respect of various Renewable Energy projects, programs and schemes under Ladakh Project costing rupees 473.00 crore. Dr. Farooq Abdullah while reviewing the power scenario in Ladakh said that timely completion of Alchi Hydel Project would fulfill a longstanding aspiration people of the region. He also said that the issue of timely completion of Alchi project would be taken up in the Central Cabinet meeting in Delhi adding that he would strongly urge the Prime Minister to intervene in earliest procurement of important components of the project like turbine from the BHEL. He suggested the State government to fulfill the required technical staff to implement the Ladakh project in a productive way which is going to benefit mainly the people of far-flung areas. The Chief Minister Mr. Omer Abdullah emphasized for making this prestigious project self-sustaining and with maximum benefit to the people living below the poverty line. He further said that Ladakh would be connected with Northern Grid within few years which would mitigate Ladakh's power problem in the long run. Minister of Tourism of the State Government, Mr. Nawang Rigzin Jora stressed on promotion of Solar Passive Buildings under this project for the people in remote areas like Durbuk, Nyoma and Trans-Singhela where people face acute shortage of heating fuel for winter months. He also suggested for indentifying a Line department to ensure smooth implementation of this project.

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The CEC, LAHDC, Leh Mr. Chering Dorje presenting the Ladakh Project said that under this project the focus has been given to cover those areas which are not goning to be covered from the Alchi Hydel project. He urged for creation of posts like Executive Engineers and Junior Engineers to strengthen the Ladakh Renewable Energy Development Agency to ensure smooth implementation of Ladakh Porject.

Ladakh project has 30 small hydel projects with a total capacity of 23.68 MW covering 61 villages in Leh district whereas Kargil district will have 12.50 MW covering 63 villages. Moreover, both the districts will have SVP power plants, wind energy projects, water mills, PICO Hydro projects, Energy parks, SVP Home lighting system, solar dish cookers, green houses, solar dryers etc. Ladakh project has 30 small hydel projects with a total capacity of 23.68 MW covering 61 villages in Leh district whereas Kargil district will have 12.50 MW covering 63 villages. Moreover, both the districts will have SVP power plants, wind energy projects, water mills, PICO Hydro projects, Energy parks, SVP Home lighting system, solar dish cookers, green houses, solar dryers etc. It is pertinent to mention here that recently when the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh visited Kashmir, he announced rupees 900 crore for laying transmission line to between Srinagar and Leh to connect Ladakh region with the Northern Power Grid which is expected to .

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Chering Dorje Promises eco-tourism in Dipling

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he Chief Executive Councilor, LAHDC, Mr. Chering Dorje had a two-day extensive tour to Dipling and Surrounding areas from June 4, 2010 to take stock of the development activities going on in the area. This is pertinent to mention here that Singhe-Lalok is probably the most remote and inaccessible area in Ladakh that remains cut off with rest of the district during the winter months on account of heavy accumulation of snow on the passes. Therefore touring officials had to fly to the area by helicopter. While addressing the public gathering at Dipling, Mr. Dorje said that under the Eco-tourism scheme, the households of this area would get Home-stays permits to run guest houses for the visiting tourists and they will be well benefitted economically in increasing their income from the tourist related business. He also promised to provide Green-houses in Singhe-lalok area during the current year in a large scale through agriculture and horticulture departments so that the people of this area will get an opportunity to grow green vegetable during winter months. The CEC Mr. Dorje informed people of this area that the motorable road to Nyaraks via Singhela is being constructed under PMGSY programme. Construction of two helipads, one each at Nyaraks and Dipling, and providing chainlink fencing to the farmers for protection of their crops from the wild animals were among the assurances the CEC and the DC given to the public.

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WANGCHUK: Son of Soil Returns to Leh

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sering Wangchuk, a Ladakhi officer hailing from Hunder village of Nubra, was posted as the Deputy Commissioner Leh, public representatives and religious associations started putting congratulatory messages on the Leh radio hoping that being a local officer and having adequate understanding of the district, Mr Wangchuk will be able to help the people of his own place more than any non-local officer whom it may take time to understand place, its people and issues facing the area. Leh district, with its strategic importance and also with a democratic institution like the Hill Council in place, makes it more than just a district. Wangchuk took over as the Deputy Commissioner, Leh cum the Chief Executive Officer, LAHDC Leh on June 7. He took over the charge from Mr. Ajeet Kumar Sahu who has been the Deputy Commissioner /CEO LAHDC, Leh since July 2008 and is now posted as Director, Technical Education, Srinagar. After taking over this prestigious post, Mr. Wangchuk called on the Chief Executive Councilor, LAHDC, Leh Mr. Chering Dorjay at Council Secretariat, where the CEC welcomed him for assuming his new post and briefed the new DC about the ongoing developmental activities in the district. Tsering Wangchuk convened an introductory meeting with the district officers on June 9, 2010 and took stock of the functioning of each and every departments of the district. In his address to the district officers Mr Wangchuk said that 25 % of the district fund had already been released and as such the implementing departments should strictly exercise to achieve the developmental target. In view of short

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working season in Leh, the new DC advised that district officers and specially the engineers should be proactive to complete the important developmental projects within the time frame and asked them to avoid going outside the district during the crucial working months adding that completion of such schemes within the stipulated period is very much important in order to have speedy development as well to ensure further flow of funding to the district in future for key projects. He ordered that all government officers or officials shall not leave their stations without prior permission from the Deputy Commissioner. Moreover, he also instructed the district officers to ensure the attendance of their subordinates so as to deliver a good service to the people of the district. Appreciating the last year's expenditure of District plan, Mr. Wangchuk

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said the all the implementing officers should works with the same zeal and dedication and the district administration would extend utmost cooperation with the departments to carry forward the developmental schemes. It is pertinent to mention here that earlier, Mr. Tsering Wangchuk was on the post of Administrator, Associated Hospital Jammu and has also worked as Additional Deputy Commissioner of Leh from July 1998 to November, 2000. Booking your advertisement for

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Omar, Family Take Summer Break in Leh

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fter inaugurating the Singhe Khababs Sindhu Festival festival on June 12, the Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, who had his family members with him, stayed in Leh for about a week and visited famous tourist destinations including Pangong Lake in Changthang. En route to the lake people of Durbuk block put forth various demands including creation of Sub-Division for Durbuk, construction of Micro Hydle Project at Tangtse and reservation quota for unemployment Youth of Changthang in recruitment and installation of mobile Mobile Tower at Lukung. While inaugurating the festival Singhe Khababs Sindhu 2010, the Chief Minister Mr. Omar Abdullah said that River Sindhu has a historic linkage with India's civilization. Referring to his close association with Ladakh since his child-

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hood, the Chief Minister said that sharing this magnificent cultural moment with his family members in Leh is a matter of great pleasure as well memorable one. Underlining the issue of poor connectivity to Ladakh, the Chief Minister said that constructing tunnels at Rohtang and Zojila passes are the only options to provide all weather roads for Ladakh to link it with the rest of the country. He said that boring of tunnel at Rohtang would be started on 28th of this month while as the Border Road Organization is preparing the DPR of Zojila tunnel within next one and half year. The Chief Minister said that the present coalition Government at the state is committed for speedy development of Ladakh and as such, the government with close coordination with the Leh Hill Council, making all possible

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efforts for all round development of this region. Speaking on the occasion, the Tourism Minister of the State Government, Mr. Nawang Rigzin Jora said that Ladakh is becoming a famous cultural and adventure destination for tourists and therefore Ladakhis should maintain image of tourist friendly destination so that each and every tourist who visits the place goes back with a positive image about the place. Welcoming the Chief Minister and his family members in Leh on this great occasion, the Chief Executive Councilor, Leh Hill Council Mr. Chering Dorje said that the main objective of this festival was to promote Ladakh for domestic tourism and it has served its purpose as the number of arrival of domestic tourists in Ladakh is increasing year after year.

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Reports REVOLUTION FOR EDUCATION

New Hope for New Ladakh RINCHEN DOLMA

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t won't be unfair to say that what Leh Polo Ground witnessed recently is a new page written in the history of Ladakh for the very future of Ladakh. It was the first ever biggest and intensified educational convention held at Leh Polo Ground organized by All Ladakh Students Joint Action Committee on the theme â&#x20AC;&#x153;A New Hope for a New Ladakh.â&#x20AC;? The conference can be seen a sequel to the grand seminar on education held at Jammu on Feb 21 this year by All Ladakh Students Association Jammu. This time the conference was a joint endeavor by eight student unions from Bangalore, Chandigarh, Dharamshala, Delhi, Jammu, Kargil, Varanasi and Zanskar with firm intention and resolves to express their concern over the deteriorating education system in Ladakh and compel the concerned authority to address this long ignored issue. This conference reflected a very ironical picture. Where it is the duty and responsibility of the policy makers, education dept, teachers and parents to realize the grave issues related to education and avail the children with quality education, it is the students themselves who have taken up education reform as their primary task through campaigns, seminars and other social welfare activities in the whole region. And the conference held at the Polo Ground was evident of it which is first of its kind in Ladakh.

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The highlight of the conference was the panel discussion in the second session of the programme. The panel comprised EC Education LAHDC Leh, Dorjay Stanzin, Ex-CEC and EC Education and Councillor LAHDC Leh, Rigzin Spalbar, Teacher Welfare Association Kargil, Ghulam Kadir Zaki, President All Ladakh Teachers' Association, Dorjay Angchuk and Former Director SECMOL Sonam Wangchuk. National Commission for Schedule Tribe Member Tsering Samphel was the chief guest of the day and Bakula Rangdol Nyima Rinpoche, Morup Namgyal, VC members, village Gobas were among the other guests present there. The concern over the increasing drop out rates, closing down of govt. schools in parallel to mushrooming of

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private schools and increasing number of outstation students mainly because of poor education facilities in Ladakh was the objective of the conference and base for the panel discussion which started with brief speeches from each panelist on the theme of the conference. EC Education LAHDC Dorjay Stanzin giving the grim picture of the result percentage said that the poor result of govt. schools as compared to private schools is due to lack of support from the parents who take these schools for granted and pay less attention probably because they get everything free in govt. schools except the uniform. He also cited the poor position of staff as another reason for the present state of education.

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“Education in terms of quantity is increasing with increasing number of schools under Sarvashiksha Abhiyan but unfortunately its quality is in a degrading state. If we intend to make govt. schools strong we should stop the blame game and all have to come together, specially the participation on part of the students is imperative,” added Mr. Dorjay. Rigzin Spalbar, Councillor, Ex-CEC and EC Education LAHDC expressed his gladness over the novel initiative by the students calling it a good sign however; on the other hand he said that it's sad not to hear anything new and its sheer wastage of time reiterating things that are already talked about. “Do we ever match our words with our deeds? If Vision Document is implemented with utmost importance Ladakh need no such conferences and all these issues will be tackled completely,” said Mr. Spalbar. He focused his point on individual responsibility and the need to retrospect before blaming anyone else for the flaws in the society. Further he appealed the students not to have superiority complex which could be self destructive, “never inculcate 'no one above us' attitude and work hard because there is no substitute for it. Sonam Wangchuk, Former Director SECMOL, who took time out of his busy schedule from Nepal on special request of the students, stressed on 'team work' in order to strengthen govt. schools. Giving example of how different organs in a human body coordinate Mr. Wangchuk said, “There should be simultaneous working of bright head, skilled hands and kind heart. If not more we have highly efficient leaders and officials, we only need to work in a coordinated and systematic manner with a healthy approach accepting both appreciation and criticism in a positive way.”

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Besides, Mohammad Abdullah and Dorjay Angchuk, President ALTA Kargil and Leh respectively also spoke on important issues related to education as panelists. “Historically or empirically to run any system established rule and conformity and sheer believe is important. Pro-active action is good but it needs to be backed up with facts, data base and complete comprehension of the system,” said Dorjay Angchuk. He also made an appeal to the local legislators to adopt organizational research method to identify flaws and problems in education field instead of blaming each other. “Today's conference is not a repetition of what is already said or done. One cannot call it a wastage; it's a revolution instigated by the students to secure their own and the coming generations' future by bringing a change in the present education system and standard,” quipped Angmo, an active student. Further, the students and any many from the audience expressed their disappointment over the absence of CEC, LAHDC and DC in the conference which was taken as their lack of interest

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in any kind of educational reform. Towards the end of the conference there was an open question session in which the audiences gathered in huge number including teachers, monks, village gobas, parents and students participated with great interest and enthusiasm. They exhibit there concern for education withstanding the sun, wind, rain and cold the whole day with empty stomach and showing complete involvement by raising endless queries and clearing their doubts and misconceptions. While answering to a question Sonam Wanchuk made it clear in public that he is glad to come back and work in Ladakh only if the people of Ladakh raise their voice for an education reform in the region and compel their village councilors to forward the demand in the council assembly to pass a resolution on it which shall also make clear that any NGO like SECMOL and any individual like him is free to contribute their services without any official barriers, “otherwise its useless banging head against the wall.” The day long conference ended with the concluding note from the pan-

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Documents

All Ladakh Students' Joint Action Committee (Memorandum presented to the LAHDC, Leh and the State Government on June 19, 2010 seeking their attention over the dismal state of education in this trans-Himalayan region) All Ladakh Students' Joint Action Committee (ALSJAC) is combined strength of eight Ladakh students unions (Jammu, Delhi, Chandigarh, Dheradun, Varanasi, Dharamsala, Kargil, Zanskar) to focus and make all possible efforts at issues concerning the Land and The people of Ladakh. The seminar in Jammu, the historical educational conference at the historical Polo ground Leh, the education campaigns across the length and breadth of Ladakh and educational rally on June 19 are being organized ALSJAC with participation of masses. Education is the issue which concerns us more than anything else. For the coming few years, we are going to concentrate our attention, efforts, seminars and rallies on education and education only. We want Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council to make education a priority not in words but also in deeds. The hopes, concerns and grievances of villagers as well as the teaching community which we meet during our campaigns and the concerns of thousands of students whom ALSJAC represents boil down to the following demands: 1. Education is not only the need of the time; it is also a Fundamental Right of every child according to the Constitution of India. Also, free and compulsory education for all children from the age of 6-14 is duty of every government. In order to make this right a meaningful, we demand the government for creating awareness among the masses, proper implementation and assessing outcomes. 2. We demand the NGOs and volunteers who have special concerns towards the education must be welcomed and encouraged. 3. Lack of transparency and rationality in teachers' transfer policy is becoming a source of frustrations for the voiceless teachers working in remotest areas. During the course of our campaign from Changthang in the East to Dha-Hanu in the West, hundreds of teachers expressed their helplessness and frustration at the favoritism, nepotism and discrimination in transferring of teachers. We demand transparency, rationality and computerization of transfer policy. 4. The 10th standard's result has been a big embarrassment for the politicians, Chief Executive Councilor, Executive Councillor Education and the Deputy Commissioner and the people of Ladakh as a whole. The Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council Leh had promised 90% results by 2010 during the HH Bakula Rinpoche Memorial Education Campaign week. Sadly, this has not achieved. We demand, at least 50% results by 2012. 5. All subject streams and combinations must be made available in the degree colleges and higher secondary schools for the students pursuing their diverse interests. 6. The Degree Colleges of Leh and Kargil should be affiliated to Jammu University or the conduct of exams, the results and mark sheets should be provided on time in Kashmir University. Owing to delay in conduct of exams to giving students with marks sheets many Ladakhi students had to give up admission in reputed institution like JNU. 7. Establishment of a nodal cell of JKPSC and SSRB in Ladakh for the convenience of the students and youth of Ladakh. 8. The students of Ladakh are uninformed about opportunities, professions and scholarships available. Also, there is a moral vacuum among the students studying in Ladakh and as well as outside. We demand career counseling by experts and discourse on moral education by appropriate persons in all blocks during summer. 9. The need of having a university (central or state) and a B.ed College is increasing year by year. We demand, establishment of a university and a B.ed College in Ladakh in the foreseeable future. 10. The progress of a society is measured on the touchstone of respects and inclusiveness it shows to the differently-abled person and minorities. Inclusive education, which LAHDC aims to achieve, must be achieved. Sir, neglecting and disregarding such genuine demands of ours shall be most unfortunate for Ladakh and its future. We hope, next year, we are not made to repeat the above demands. All Ladakh Students' Joint Action Committee (ALSJAC) Place: Leh Date: June 19, 2010

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elists followed by some cultural programmes. EC Education, Dorjay Stanzin calming the little agitated students said that he won't be able to give any commitment on the spot as demanded by the students because such haste decision will only lead to worthless results but he assured them to soon look for a solution in consideration with higher officials to upgrade the education system in Ladakh on an urgent note. Earlier, in the first session speeches were delivered by student representative namely Murup Dorjay, Shakeel from Kargil, Gen. Konchok Rabstan and Rigzin Chosgyal expressing their concern on the present dismal state of education in Ladakh and raised issues and problems experienced by the Ladakhi students. In a follow up to this open discussion students took out a rally that aimed at providing the message to the people of Ladakh for a better education system and a prosperous culture of education in Ladakh. With a successful participation of around thousand students from various private schools in Leh, the rally commenced from Women Alliance office and passing through Leh market to Council Secretariat it ended at Polo ground. The rally concluded the days of activities undertaken by the All Ladakh Students Joint Action Committee that includes the above mentioned conference and campaigns in villages across the length and breadth of Ladakh. The students also presented a memorandum at the DC's office calling for urgent consideration in the matter of education highlighting some of vital issues like establishment of central university and B. Ed. College in Ladakh, transparency in the teacher transfer system and an overall efficient education system in Ladakh with special emphasis on government schools. Once again the apathetic attitude shown by the CEC, LAHDC by not addressing the rally and instead attending a function at Matho made the students announce that the local administration takes no interest in giving education the prime priority. Also students from Leh govt. schools were not made available in the rally despite the letter of order from the CEO of the district. Withstanding such discouraging responses the students are strongly committed to strive ceaselessly towards a much better education system in Ladakh making wisdom the guiding principle of Ladakh.

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All Not Well on Ladakh-China Border: Report

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high level fact finding of the Bhartiya Janta Party has expressed serious concern over the developments in India's western borders with China running along Ladakh region. The fact finding committee constituted by BJP president Nitin Gadkari toured Ladakh sector between April 1 and 3 this year and said that it came across glaring border lapses which need to be plugged in. releasing the study report at Patna during its national executive meet on June 12, the BJP has called upon the Government of India constitute a Parliamentary Panel for a comprehensive study of India's border issues with China. India shares 4056 kms boundary with China which is further divided into three sectors i.e., The Eastern, Middle and Western Sectors. The line in the Eastern Sector extends with boundary of Sikkim, Burma etc. The boarder with Sikkim was drawn according to the AngloChinese convention of 1890. With Burma and Arunachal Pradesh (NEFA), it was drawn by Mc Mahon and ratified in the Shimla convention of 1913-14. Whereas the Tibetian representative became a party to the convention, Chinese representative refused to sign the agreement. Chinese do not accept Mac Mahon line as, according to them, it was enforced on them by imperialist British, when they were a weak nation. Here China claims an area of 94700 sq. kms in addition to whole of Arunachal Pradesh and some parts of Sikkim as their territory. The Western Sector comprises of area of Aksai Chin and the western boundary in Ladakh is located along the Lanka La, Niagzu stream and Demchok and Teshigong through the Emis pass, which was originally under the control of Ladakhi Kings. Aksai Chin is strategic to China to sustain control over Tibet. Here China claims about 38000 sq kms of land in Aksai Chin of Ladakh region. In the Middle Sector the area extends up to Spiti valley and Shipkila pass. In Garhwal area of Uttara Khand, Satluj-Ganga watershed has been the traditional boundary. Here China claims about 1300 sq kms as their territory. Reproduced below is the portion of BJP's study report that pertains to the western sector along Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir:

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Position at LAC Firstly, there are Claim Lines of both India and China between which are disputably claimed by both the countries. Then there is LAC which came into existence after 1962 war. At present India and China are holding at LAC, but the LAC is also not properly defined line. India and Chinese are having different perceptions about the position of LAC. China claims LAC which also covers area presently under our control. Whereas there is clash of claims between our Government and that of China, but perception of local people about LAC is quite different even from our Government which further go deep into Chinese occupied areas. The claim of the local people is based on their regular practice of herding the pastures during different seasons to graze their animals. The Chinese strategy seems to advance slowly on LAC and bring it in line with their Line of their Claim to put their claims effectively in future boundary talks. Aksai Chin is of utmost importance for China to keep effective control on Tibet, compelling different pressure tactics so as to give the message the lay claims on the area. The scripting of Chinese signs on our side of boundary at Mangyur and T-Point, is a part of this strategy. The Army and ITBP are not prepared to accept that it was done by Chinese patrol. But they did admit that when army/ITBP personals visit these areas which we claim as ours, they also leave behind certain objects to show their presence. The Indian Army asserted that they too intrude without confrontation and deliberately leave behind their own personal effects on the Chinese land to counter them.

Army and ITBP's perception According to army personnel, there is no change on ground since 1962.

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The forward posts are at the same place where they were earlier. Army is not directly manning the borders and it is ITBP's responsibility. As army has to be prepared for the emergency both army and ITBP have to take up certain task jointly. Army admitted privately that there is an urgent need to improve conditions of the roads and also the requirement of advanced equipments for proper surveillance. Chinese are far ahead of us in this regard. They need not patrol the border all the times. They have advanced equipments that whenever there is any activity which they consider violation their reaction comes within an hour. The news about Chinese incursion was categorically denied by the Army. But, there may be certain occasion when we patrol area we claim as ours, they call it violations and we do the same when they do in our areas which we consider as ours. However, mostly differences are resolved amicably.

Illegal Border Trade Illegal Trade was going on till 2008 when Chinese stopped it apprehending that Tibetans might use the trade routes to enter China and organize anti-China protest during Olympic Games. According to security forces, those civilians who were engaged in this trade are now an unhappy lot and they are the people who have given the issue of Chinese incursion a hype.

Dispute over Grazing Grounds The Riboos (Grazers) of Ladakh traditionally own the huge pasture lands across Indus, which fall within Chinese Claim Line now but are actually under our occupation. It is a general practice among Riboos to save these pastures for winter season. When Indus freezes in winter, they carry their herds for grazing there. This practice is going on since

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time immemorial and continued even after 1962 war. As these areas are inhospitable during winter, the Riboos use tents to reside there. After 1981, China in order to put claim on these pasturelands, encouraged their grazers to enter these lands before Riboos from India reach these areas during winter. Pa s t u r e s a r e L o g o n k a m p o , Bhumsedum, Melung, Tarahap, Dora, Dokbuk, Logma, Sirdeeng, Misisile, Nakumba, Tabeehar, Nagsang, Seldom etc. These pastures are situated opposit to Dungti Post of India. According to locals here, in 1984, they complained about this to the Government but no notice was taken. During 2003-04 Tashi Dorjey, D.C Leh, who is the son of the soil, got these pastures vacated from Chinese grazers by using police force. After that the incursion had stopped. But, in 2008 the Chinese captured the animals of Indian Riboos from these areas without any reaction from our side. Now these areas have also become disputed territory. Our people are annoyed with the ITBP as they don't allow our Riboos to go to the pastures earlier held by them. Our Security Forces seem to be defensive on this point. Apparently they have directions from above to avoid a situation which may result into direct confrontation with the Chinese. The Indian Army surprisingly expresses their displeasure that in the recent past, the people residing on LAC celebrated Dalai Lama's birth day which provoked the Chinese. People of Demchok also told the Committee that last year, when they wanted to hoist national flag on Independence Day they were not allowed to do so by our own Security Forces. We observed that the security people generally avoid the situation which invites reaction from the Chinese side much to the disgruntlement of the Indian people.

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The Issue of Road at Demchok In 2009, the people of Demchok undertook construction of road inside our areas (but within Chinese Claim Line) out of NREGA funds. They were joined by people from adjoining villages also. The District Administration knew about the construction of this road. They were able to construct about 4 km of road when objected by Chinese. As the Chinese army personnel forced the local people at gun point to stop the work, no objection was raised from the Indian government. The people were angry with security forces for not intervening on their behalf. They question why they are not allowed to undertake development works on our side. An amount of 3.75 crores have been allotted for the construction of irrigation channels in Demchok area. But the construction could not be commenced due to Chinese objection. Rigzin Tange, the Numbardar of Demchok reported that when they were constructing irrigation channel, the Chinese came and took their photographs. To the contrary we were told that in 2004-05, the Chinese constructed similar road on their side (within our Claim Line), there was no protest from our side. And till date the government has not taken up the matter with the Chinese.

Security Lapses It is a fact that the existing border post of the Indian Army are unduly spaced, where the distance can exceed more than 20 kms which distinctly advantages the Chinese intruders. The Chinese have intruded in Mangyur in Demchok area, area opposite to Dungti post, Chumar in Nyoma block, places near Pengong Lake etc. Again, there are certain passes like Jolang pass, Chinmuk Nala, Magdum La, which are left unmanned. There is no post within 40 kms and the Jaarsar post is 8 kms away

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from LAC. In 1972 the Chinese grazers had captured about 5 sq kms of our area but remarkably the local people succeeded in forcing them back and recovered the area. Between Jaarsar and Chumar there is another pass known as Tara La where there is no post. In 1972 about 40 Tibetian families entered India from this point who are now living in Hanley village. There is no post at T Point but the Army and ITBP do patrol this area occasionally. Further, some posts are located which can be reached after 10 to 12 days walk as there are no roads and no provision for airlifting. Security people stated that due to hostile terrain and bad weather, patrolling is almost impossible in these areas. Further, at most of the points our posts are on hilltops, far behind LAC. Finding these gaps, the Chinese have crossed the LAC at certain points and in some cases have reached their Line of Claim. These are the areas which our Riboos stake as theirs and complain that Security Forces do not allow them to take their herds to these areas. There are virtually no roads on our border and more distinctly in those areas which are under dispute. These are just wind sandy rubble tracks or kuchha ways through the plain valleys which our Army and Security Forces are using. Such a road system, in no way can serve our requirement during war deployment. This state of affairs existed both on Eastern and Western sectors. It is in common knowledge that China has constructed metalled roads up to LAC. According to one source China has deployed 2 lakh Army on IndoChina border and has the potential to move two more Divisions to forward areas during the emergency. Moreover, China has constructed 13 Airports and has established several missile points on the border. The living conditions of the Army are comparatively better than the ITBP personnel but the overall logistical

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scenario is not very promising. Remarkably if this part of Ladakh region is opened up for tourist, the travel distance to Kailash Mansarover will be reduced to less than a half. Notably in ancient times this was the familiar route to Kailash Mansarover. A senior IAS officer who has served this area has been the real whistle blower to the real issue on incursion in the Ladakh region causing a great discomfort to the Union Government. The awareness and ground realities as stated by some of officials positioned in Ladakh is not happily shared or agreed by the Union Government or the State agencies working there. While the border areas with China which are located above 15000 ft is indeed a challenging way of life with no food chain and access to supplies , cost of living for any Indian is prohibitive. Chinese pursue the policy of non confrontation and have taken a deliberate advantage of visible poor road and communication infrastructure on the Indian side. A tough situation is faced by Indian Army and ITBP which is rendering remarkable support service both in terms of medical aid and food supplies and ration to all our citizens on the border. The assistance given by Indian Army to local population is worth appreciating. Howsoever the defeat of 1962 war pinches the local population and they have witnessed large chunks of our areas being captured by Chinese aggressors. It was felt though there may not have been major incursions in last couple of years, yet post independence there has been marked incursion by the PLA. We notably felt that local populace have kept a great vigil on the Chinese activity and Government should endeavour to make their presence more visible by means of providing them basic infrastructure and other social support, which is more or less absent.

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Errata!

Repeal AFSPA, Return to Idea of India ANMOL SHARMA

The debate pioneered by Irom Sharmila Chanu's six year long indefinite fast to repeal the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958, has now been catapulted in Jammu and Kashmir state into a bitter controversy by the ruling, opposition and separatist parties' intermittent rhetoric. What Peoples Democratic Party of Mufti Mohammad Sayeed would say before assuming power in 2002 became a catchphrase for the National Conference the following six years. Now there is a role reversal. PDP is back in pre-2002 mode. Leave separatists and civil society aside, both premiere political parties have failed to effectively campaign the rationale for their claim to repeal the said legislation among the masses but also have shaped an uncertainty by their incongruous statements. As a necessary consequence they burnt her hands, at different points in time, labeled secessionists, left isolated and over and above, have desecrated the cause. Such is Kashmir, the country that may be conquered by the force of spiritual merit but not by armed force. Kalhan in Rajtarangni (12th century) Disregarding the spar between political parties over this issue, it is imperative for us to understand why a red discontent is growing against this Act of 1958, particularly in the North – Eastern States and why political parties like Peoples Democratic Party of Jammu and Kashmir are asking for repeal. Here it would not be an aberration to state that in the first place, assiduous and an analytical approach should be adopted to discern the legacy of AFSPA and in the second scrutinize the collateral damage of vast extraordinary powers it confers to the Armed Forces in dealing with “disturbance” in civilian areas. So this kind of situation has precipitated overriding predicaments before the Indian civil society, such as, is AFSPA

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not an anti-thesis to the credentials of India as the largest democracy in the world? Is the genre of such type of draconian laws the only solution for solving the so-called insurgency in North-

à Is AFSPA not is anti-thesis to the credentials of India as the largest democracy in the world? à Is the genre of such type of draconian laws the only solution for solving the socalled insurgency in NorthEastern States and crossborder terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir? Eastern States and cross-border terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir? It is, however, germane to note at the same time, that Indians, under the colonial rule of the British were them-

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selves subject to scores of draconian and brutal laws. The description and details of them is not only tragic but grotesque too. Interestingly the genus of the Act in question is in these very same Colonial British laws, as Delhi University's Political Analyst Dr. A. S. Ojha points out, “The AFSPA was borrowed heavily from laws passed during the British colonial era and is a dark legacy”. This is a mega reversal of the role we as a nation have managed to achieve, where we are now perpetrating the same atrocious laws upon our own brothers and sisters in the garb of countering insurgency and terrorism. On the one hand, we have placed Barrister Gandhi on the pedestal of Mahatmahood for initiating his first Satyagraha against 'The Transvaal Asiatic Registration Act, 1906' in South Africa. That Act, inter alia, had conferred powers to policemen to enter and search the house of any Asian. Those who defied the law were flogged,

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jailed and even shot at. In response, Gandhiji encouraged his colleagues to burn their passes, outside Hamidia Mosque in Newtown. In The Indian Opinion, he surmised his wisdom in an article 'Violence Begets Violence' as, “Non-violent acts of civil disobedience were acceptable against any immoral law that was repugnant or harmful to the people”. And on the other hand, we have our parliamentarians who took just three hours in the Lok Sabha and four in the Rajya Sabha to approve this hideous Act. In the 50 years of legislative history, AFSPA is an emblematic case of Patriarchal violence getting State's legitimacy. Blanket powers are conferred to the Armed Forces and this has ostensibly resulted in innumerable incidents of arbitrary detentions, torture, rape and lootings. Under this Act, security forces have at their hands a dangerous cocktail of Carte-blanche powers with absolutely no accountability in carrying out their operations once an area is declared as “disturbed”. All the arbitrary and unconstitutional powers conferred to the military personnel, shoot from section 4 of AFSPA which are against all constitutional and International laws. Even on mere suspicion, a noncommissioned officer (havaldar) has, under section 4(a) the power to shootto-kill any person. He can use force against people who are not presenting any force at all. He can completely destroy any property under section 4(b) if it is suspected of being used as a fortified position etc. Any person under section 4(c) can be arrested without warrant if it is suspected that he has committed any cognizable offence. Under section 4(d), force can be used to enter and search any house on suspicion of it being used as a hide out.

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Section 6 is the ice in this deadly cocktail. It establishes that no legal proceeding can be initiated against any member of the military for their abuses. This section provides legal immunity and the victim of the armed forces abuse is left with no legal remedy. Several incidences have highlighted the cruelty of these powers by the BSF, CRPF and the Army. On 5 March

On the one hand, we have placed Barrister Gandhi on the pedestal of Mahatmahood for initiating his first Satyagraha against 'The Transvaal Asiatic Registration Act, 1906' in South Africa. That Act, inter alia, had conferred powers to policemen to enter and search the house of any Asian. Those who defied the law were flogged, jailed and even shot at. In response, Gandhiji encouraged his colleagues to burn their passes, outside Hamidia Mosque in Newtown. In The Indian Opinion, he surmised his wisdom in an article 'Violence Begets Violence' as, “Non-violent acts of civil disobedience were acceptable against any immoral law that was repugnant or harmful to the people”. 1995, in Kohima, the Rashtriya Rifles mistaking the sound of a tyre burst of their own convoy as a bomb attack, started firing indiscriminately in the town. In response, Assam Rifles and CRPF jawans who were camping two kilometers away also blindly started firing. The firing which lasted for more than one hour resulted in the death of seven innocent people, 22 seriously injured, amongst those killed in the rampage were two little girls aged 3 and 8 years.

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Not only that, the Indian Air Force has shockingly bombarded Mizoram in 1966. Indian Army has lobbed Mortar shells in the middle of a town in the North East. In Kashmir too, on 18 September 1997, eleven people, including women and children, were killed by mortar-shelling in Arin Bandipora. These acts attest that power under this law has been stretched too far and fundamental rights of Indians have been walloped too bad. This unreasonable State-sponsored violence has had terrible repercussions on people of these affected areas. Disenchantment among youths has led them to abandon their dreams and embrace guns, drugs, alcohol and prostitution, thus easily succumbing to HIV. When innocent pedestrians are abducted during crackdowns and killed by security forces for promotions or shot in the streets in the name of law enforcement, it is the women folk who bare the brunt in reconstructing their lives and nurturing their families. In 2004, the abduction and killing of Thangjam Manorama Devi triggered massive protests by the people of Manipur. A group of brave Mothers shook the conscience of the entire world by their nude protest in front of Assam Rifles HQ. Overwhelmed by this incident the Prime Minister went to Imphal in November 2004 and holding the hand of a weeping mother said “We will do something”. The Prime Minister, consequently, directed the appointment of a high level committee headed by Justice B. P. Jeevan Reddy with the mandate to review, amend and replace the AFSPA. On 6 June 2005, this committee submitted its 147-page report which unambiguously recommended the repeal of the controversial law. “The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, should be

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repealed," it noted in its recommendations. "The Act is too sketchy, too bald and quite inadequate in several particulars". The report further added that the perception gathered by its members during the course of its findings is that "the Act, for whatever reason, has

THE CHILL IN SPINE à Even on mere suspicion, a noncommissioned officer (havaldar) has, under section 4(a) the power to shoot-to-kill any person. à He can use force against people who are not presenting any force at all. à He can completely destroy any property under section 4(b) if it is suspected of being used as a fortified position etc. à Any person under section 4(c) can be arrested without warrant if it is suspected that he has committed any cognizable offence. à Under section 4(d), force can be used to enter and search any house on suspicion of it being used as a hide out. à Section 6 is the ice in this deadly cocktail. It establishes that no legal proceeding can be initiated against any member of the military for their abuses. à This section provides legal immunity and the victim of the armed forces abuse is left with no legal remedy.

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become a symbol of oppression, an object of hate and an instrument of discrimination and high-handedness”. But the government has obscurely remained silent for over nearly five years now over its recommendations. However, it is not just the Jeevan Reddy Report but all major global forums, the International Court of Justice, Amnesty International and Asia Watch that have implored Government of India, time and again, to scrap this draconian law. But India's civil administration is a casualty of bureaucratic inertia and its infatuation with the army dragoons from 'taking a child out of the bore well' to finding a 'solution for militancy'. The people of India should hang their heads in shame over the sickening violations of human rights by our security forces in the north as well as in the east. They are primarily guilty of bringing disgrace to India and for this one only has to read articles in the International press. The graphic and animate writing of Crossette, Barbara in New York Times (India Moves Against Kashmir Rebels, April 7, 1991) is just one instance in this regard. She wrote an heart rendering recitation how on February 23rd, 1991 over 100 women in Kunan Poshpora, Kupwara were raped by soldiers of 4th Rajputana Rifles from 11 in the night till 9 am of the next day. The reports of Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, our very own NHRC have now and then also cornered the security forces for their gross misdeeds per se in Kashmir. The tears of those mothers whose young children have been kidnapped and then later murdered in cold blood will sooner or later culminate into a tsunami and will hit the shores of India with disastrous repercussions, if this mad-

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On the other hand, we have our parliamentarians who took just three hours in the Lok Sabha and four in the Rajya Sabha to approve this hideous Act. In the 50 years of legislative history, AFSPA is an emblematic case of Patriarchal violence getting State's legitimacy. Blanket powers are conferred to the Armed Forces and this has ostensibly resulted in innumerable incidents of arbitrary detentions, torture, rape and lootings. AFSPA, thus, today stands as an embarrassing anti-thesis of the very idea of India. ness is not brought to a halt at once. It should be however kept in the back of the mind at the same time that people of Jammu are touchy even about the invisible presence of few policemen in the campus of Jammu University. It's definitely a joke, right? Anyhow, not very long ago, China's Mao Zedong propounded the theory of “Fish in Water”. He equated rural militant with Fish and water with disgruntled, disillusioned and resentful people. If this dissatisfaction amongst people is removed or water is substantially reduced, the Fish would automatically perish. So, exceptional understanding, by very intelligent leaders, of present day crisis and parallel compassionate policies will hold the key. More importantly we should remember Kalhan's stern prophetic warning in the Rajtarangni, in the 12th century: Such is Kashmir, the country that may be conquered by the force of spiritual merit but not by armed force. Harsh counter violence is not the answer.

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Exclusive Series

New Research on Kashmir ROY BUCHER:

Right Man in the Wrong Place? RAKESH ANKIT

G

eneral (Sir) Roy Bucher, MC was born in 1895. Commissioned in the British Indian army, he rose to become the second Commander-inChief of independent India's army. In his long and distinguished career he held the posts of Major-General (Admin.) in the Southern Command (1942-45); GOC in Bengal & Assam (1946-January 1947) and Chief of Staff at the Army Headquarters (August-December 1947). He served as the C-in-C for a year and ten days from 5 January 1948 to 15 January 1949. He succeeded Rob Lockhart and was succeeded by K. M. Cariappa. He enjoyed good relations with PM Nehru, Home Minister Patel, Defence Minister Baldev Singh and Defence Secretary H. M. Patel and not willing to let go of his experience and expertise they retained his services as OSD in the Defence Ministry after his retirement. Bucher died in 1980. Bucher was not the man on whose charge Indian troops were air-lifted to Srinagar on 27 October 1947 and nor did the military buck stop with him in the early exchanges and the first offensive of November 1947. But he was – in many ways – a more important man given that his tenure neatly coincided with the bulk of the fighting in Kashmir – the spring offensive (March), the summer fights (June) and the final push (November) – over 1948. He also brought home the ceasefire and that line, perhaps, owes more to his military mind than to the politics of Sheikh Abdullah or Sardar

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Patel or V. P. Menon or Hari Singh or even Jawaharlal Nehru. Bucher was a man of few words. He shunned spotlight while he served – unlike his opposite number in Pakistan Douglas Gracey. He was mild-mannered and congenial; very unobtrusive and unassertive. Not surprisingly very little is known about him. He himself did not write anything and spoke little after his return to England. His private papers at the Templer Study Centre, National Army Museum (London) consist almost wholly of his correspondences – the bulk of which are letters he wrote to his daughter Elizabeth during 1947-48. There are also a couple each to Gracey, Baldev Singh and one each to H. M. Patel and Nehru. This piece attempts to put together a little of Bucher and his views, chiefly on the Kashmir conflict – after all he had to run it, through these. The first mention of 'Kashmir is in trouble with tribesmen whom Pakistan can not control' comes in a letter Bucher wrote to his daughter on 24 October. He painted for her the multi-layered complexity of the situation: 'The ruler of Kashmir is a Hindu. If you look at the map again, you will see that Pakistan has a right to wonder what Kashmir will do. The state has not acceded to either dominion. India has said [that] Kashmir is entirely free to decide as to the country which she wishes to accede to but I wonder…The internal situation in Pakistan may be worsening and their soldiers are becom-

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ing a little less reliable. India quite definitely would be embarrassed if Kashmir acceded to her. Thus a game of power politics goes on'. Three weeks later, Bucher is both more specific and more explanatory of what had happened in the intervening period. He mentions the estimated number of tribesmen, their route and reach, Kashmir's accession and the danger to Europeans present in Srinagar and their evacuation. He found it 'difficult to assess where this is all leading but at present India is, in a kind of a way, taking action in aid of the civil power in Kashmir against tribesmen whose actions have had, at least, the connivance of the government of the NWFP and, possibly, even a measure of assistance'. As the skirmish stretched beyond its first month, Bucher began to display the first signs of frustration and amazement at both the internal and international labyrinthine of Pakistan politics and International suspicions, respectively, and fear that Kashmir was getting caught in these two, inter-linked webs. He wrote to Elizabeth that 'the Pakistan government can not stop these guys and their army could hardly be used to bar their progress. In Pakistan some folks seem to be double crossing one another' [while] 'America is possibly not anxious that UNO should be brought in on the Kashmir referendum because of Russia. So much for Kashmir'! He was expressing the same opin-

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ion to his Government. He told the Defence Minister Baldev Singh on 17 November that 'I realise [that] it may well-nigh be impossible for Pakistan to resist any such determination on the part of the tribesmen. If you look at the map, you will see that it is impossible for the Pakistan government to place physically obstacles in the way'.i December 1947 began with the Indian army losing its C-in-C, Rob Lockhart, and unaware of his successor. Rob's departure complicated matter more so as likely choices were not on surface yet while the Kashmir problem continued to grow. Around this time, a possibility was being mooted of widening the front into West Punjab – an incursion which Bucher thought would be 'disastrous'. January 1948 began with Bucher 'surprised, delighted [and in] gratitude at being elected the C-in-C'. In his new capacity, he worried about Pakistan, about the fighting spreading to Punjab and hoped for 'some form of compromise' at the UN. He ended the month complaining to his daughter about Pakistan's 'unwilling' attitude to discuss the preservation of law and order in Kashmir; 'unreal' demands that Sheikh Abdullah be disowned while the leader of the Azad government, sponsored by Pakistan, be accepted. An important strand in Bucher's thinking over Kashmir was his willingness to identify and, at times, imagine various centres of power, authority and legitimacy driving Pakistan's war in Kashmir. As he clarified to Elizabeth in a letter dated 10 February 1948: 'When I said Pakistan, I was wrong; I should have said nationals of Bhawalpur [sic] state, which is in Pakistan'; one paragraph below he hoped 'that no ill considered action on the part of a minor official will precipitate matters between the two dominions. The GOI certainly does not wish to be aggressive in any way against Pakistan and I think the same holds good

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of the other Dominion with the exception of Mr. Jinnah'. Similarly, Bucher also evinced hope in the UN handling of the affair far longer than many other – most notably his opposite number in Pakistan, General Gracey, who had heaped scorn on 'this UNO business' in a letter to Bucher. The latter replied on 30 March that he still had 'faith in “this UNO business” and only hope whatever is going to be done is decided on quickly'. When Indian army launched its spring offensive in March-April, Bucher became worried about possible Russian and/or Afghan threat: 'infiltration into the Kashmir valley proper from the north'. When Pakistan army responded the spring offensive by sending regular army units to fight from May-June 1948 onwards, Bucher became 'worried about identification of personnel in the shape of prisoners, who appear to belong to regular units of the Pakistan army. These men, whom I have personally interviewed, swear that their whole units are fighting'. He could not believe for a while and certainly could never understand 'how senior British officers in Pakistan remain unaware of this state of affairs'. Bucher took a long, long time to get the obvious point that they were not – in fact, they had planned 'this state of affairs'. Sir Terence Shone revealed the extent to which Bucher exercised influence on the Indian cabinet, on this matter, when he wrote to the CRO on 11 June 1948 that the prolonged Indian silence on the presence of Pakistan troops in Kashmir was due to the service chiefs, 'particularly Bucher counselling them to keep quiet. He has a lot of influence with the PM, Sardar Patel and the Defence Minister and is a very restraining influence on the Cabinet'.ii By now, increasingly, Bucher saw the futility of military action and was among the first men in uniform who argued for a political settlement.

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To that end he wrote to the Defence Secretary H. M. Patel and Air Marshal Elmhirst on 24 June 1948 that he had moderated Cariappa's proposal of about 10 days ago of air attacks on Jhelum bridges at Kohala and Lachhman Pattan, Mirpur and Gilgit because of political consequences and incalculable political repercussions. Cariappa's original aim was the preparation of a plan to cut off the raiders in J & K from their bases in Pakistan, on the assumption that the UN would order this. Bucher instead 'considered any proposal to cut off the raiders in Kashmir and Jammu from their bases a chimera full of the gravest danger to India'. Therefore, the aim was revised to the successful prosecution of the operations in J & K but with the proviso that no further troops will be available and the protection on a purely defensive basis of the frontiers of India against aggression and especially the North-Westerly basis. A frustrated Cariappa could only complain to Bucher that he was 'fully aware of the international implications involved but I feel if we do not do something speedily [it] might lead to serious consequences'.iii Later in mid-November 1948 Bucher was again to over-rule Cariappa's wish to bomb Mirpur and Muzaffarabad while agreeing to relieve Poonch because in case of partition/plebiscite the boundary might have run close to the town. In July 1948, as the United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan on Kashmir prepared to arrive in the subcontinent Bucher still agonized 'how some senior British officers in Pakistan squared their conscience about all this [Pakistan regular units fighting in Kashmir]'. In August, as Pakistan admitted this fact and presented it as a fait accompli to the UNCIP and simultaneously introduced artillery to support its infantry troops Bucher unburdened himself in a long letter to Elizabeth (10 August) thus:

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'The position of British officers on both sides has become tricky. In Pakistan the set up is very largely British and, in fact, all the High Commands and Staff's jobs are to this day so held. I know my fellow countrymen are not actually fighting in J & K, but at the same time it is easy for them to direct matters from just over the border, should they so desire. Of course, there can be no two doubts, but that Army HQ there knew all about what was going on. The government of NWFP hardly took any action to stop the Wazirs and Mahsuds pushing into the Jhelum valley; this frightened Hari Singh into acceding to India. Had he any other alternative'? Bucher was right about the government of NWFP and wrong about his 'fellow countrymen'. We now know that 812 British officers were serving in Kashmir – in the Signals regiment – in June 1948. We now know the details of the first British casualty, Major A. M. Sloan, RE (No. 352677 A), 71 Fd Coy RPE who was killed in Tithwal, the northern sector of the line of control, at 0915 hours on Saturday 10 July 1948 and was buried at Abbottabad on Sunday 11 July 1948. We now know some of other names as well – Lt. Col. Williams, Major Jorie, Major Frier, Major Jones and Captain Ripps. (See my The Defiant Douglas in the January issue of Epilogue) Bucher had testy exchanges with Gracey in this period. One particular set is remarkable in the way it shows up the stark difference in the personality of the two men. They really were chalkand-cheese. On 30 August Gracey let loose the following spectacular diatribe to Bucher: 'You groused that we had not told you categorically that Pakistan regular troops would be sent in if you carried out the much-heralded [spring] offensive. I did, insofar, as I could. Now let

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me tell you categorically that unless you lay off Hyderabad and treat her magnanimously, you are inviting a conflagration which no one will be able to put out. The curse of the matter again is the attitude of the tribesmen and the man in the street. They are being inflamed by their mullahs to take direct action and if you think the Pakistan government will be able to stop them with the very small army it has, then for God's sake think again. I would remind you again that there are NO plans whatsoever for aggressing or attacking anyone, much less India. All our plans are purely defensive. We have not the troops or police to stop major Pathan incursions or upsurges of further resentment amongst the civilian population, and rely on two things to keep them quiet, namely, political action, not backed by any force at present; and India's good sense in not doing anything provocative. Why can not the Government of India realise all this and be magnanimous as regards Hyderabad? Call of the blockade, extend the stand-still agreement and go back to the original proposals. It would be an act of statesmanship which would have the most marvelous results in Pakistan, and be acclaimed throughout the world. If no conciliatory statesmanship is shown and coercive methods and continued, you are again putting Pakistan into an impossible position'.iv A week later Bucher replied in much more even, guileless and gullible tones: 'In view of what has happened hitherto in J & K, I think it will be wise if I refrain from any comment on the policy of GOP. Your personal difficulties are sympathetically understood and India has no aggressive intention towards Pakistan. You cautioned that certain operations might have serious repercussions. Nevertheless, I did not, for one moment, appreciate you were hinting

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at opposition to the India army by stronger elements than those already encountered in J & K. My failure to grasp your “hidden” warning lies on my conscience for a variety of reasons'.v Nonetheless, he along with Air Marshal Elmhirst and Admiral Hall prepared a report for HMG and UNCIP concluding the use of regular Pakistan army units in Kashmir, around this time. In September-October 1948, Bucher became pre-occupied with Islam and Communism and their interaction – real or potential or even imaginary – in the conflict of Kashmir. In this sense, he was a man of his times. He also gave an AIR broadcast on 27.10.48 on the 1st anniversary of the Kashmir war and cautioned against its weakening effect on both sides. Three days later he received another tirade from Gracey: 'What [is] all this expansion [of the Indian Army] about and why; of whom are you so afraid? Why so many B-245s; why so much armament production? Has the mantle of Tojo fallen upon Nehru and is a Greater East Asia sphere, as visualised by the Japs, being reconstituted? If you have decided not to send us any more stores, why not come clean and say so? Have you a guilty conscience by any chance? When you do eventually chuck your present job, it would be nice if you and Maureen could come and take a look at this very peaceful country, look over the hill and see what Indian propaganda has turned from a really delightful country into a maelstrom of barbarism'.vi The reply – rather delayed this time – again portrays Bucher's difference in style and substance to the mercurial and temperamental Gracey: 'I suspect this to be somewhat of a leg pull. May I please be excused answering your question? Pandit Nehru is too great a man even “to don” the mantle of Tojo which would indeed be

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an ill-fit. Naturally I “feel bad” if there is any lack of progress in rapprochement between the two dominions…I wish I possessed real wisdom'. 'My present period of volunteering ends on 1.1.49. So far my successor has not been selected, neither have I been asked to stay on. It is a question of “finally deciding to chuck it”…but of India wishing to employ me further and of HMG particularly desiring me to stay. My private affairs really demand my return home, if possible'. 'Perhaps I am very stupid, but it puzzles me when you write of “a maelstrom of barbarism because of Indian propaganda”. You can not really be referring to such “guys” as Mahsuds, Wazirs etc!! If so, I am afraid I have always regarded them as blood-thirsty rogues, though amusing company “at times”.vii Bucher confided his fears about Gracey and other issues in the Defence Minister: 'Whereas the C-in-C of the army in India is so to speak, a very constitutional one, the C-in-C in Pakistan seems to have had far greater powers conferred on him by his government. Personally, I think this is a mistake. [Secondly] Communist penetration through Hunza and Sinkiang is becoming more intense. There are certain communist elements at work in Poonch. [Finally] Pakistan will compromise but I do not know how their view point will be progresses or what their final terms will be'.viii Graffety-Smith commented upon the differences between Bucher and Gracey and while doing so complimented both, in very different ways. Reporting to the CRO towards the end of 1948 when a ceasefire was less than a fortnight away, he wrote: 'I am very well aware that General Gracey's impulsive behaviour temperament leads him to consider the situation less frigidly than General Bucher. But I

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believe this to be more or less irrelevant, for any British Officer commanding the Pakistan army must consider present operations in Kashmir as more immediately critical and dangerous than they may appear in Delhi. Pakistan's political and certainly her economic existence will be in the gravest jeopardy if West Kashmir falls into unfriendly hands. [There is no doubt; I take it, in the mind of HMG] Fighting is now going on in areas peculiarly vital to Pakistan's survival. There seems to me a great difference in the relative urgency of these considerations as they affect each Dominion and I doubt whether an attitude of detachment, however possible in Delhi is possible or indeed permissible in the Pakistan C-in-C'.ix Bucher wished India, Pakistan and Kashmir luck in his own way when, as he wrote to his daughter on 3 (odd number) January, he ordered the ceasefire 1 minute before midnight of the 1st January 1949 because 'odd numbers are lucky'. One day before – on the last day of 1948 – he had sought to assure his Prime Minister that while: 'It is perhaps difficult to accept assurances from Pakistan's army HQ in view of the past. Nevertheless, I think guarantees that their build-up is defensive “hold water”. They evidently attach much importance to protection in depth to the Mangla headworks as also to preventing any exodus into Pakistan proper of the refugees resettled in the Mirpur-Bhimbar areas. This last, they consider, can best be insured against by a strong curtain of troops. Pakistan has, of course, no right to have troops where they are. The fact remains they are “in situ” and we could not prevent this'.x Bucher, throughout 1948, was anxious to avoid a head-on clash with Pakistan. As we have been, he always advocated a defensive stance and tried

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to avoid any 'precipitate action on the part of an Indian Commander [Cariappa]’xi to such an extent that he promised to send General McCay (COS, Pakistan Army) a personal signal should the Indian government 'double-cross' him over the restriction of advance during winter months into Mirpur- Kotli-Bhimbar- DomelMuzaffarabad. xii This was more in keeping with the wishes of his old masters (HMG) than his new ones (GOI). Naturally, London and its HighCommissioner in India considered Bucher a valuable asset. As Shone reported on 6 December 1948: 'Bucher has not only been ready to receive advice, he has constantly sought it and his influence - which has been considerable - has undoubtedly been an accommodating force. With Cariappa's appointment our influence in military circles will therefore diminish and may disappear altogether'.xiii Fifteen days later he was out of uniform. Despite having a difficult relationship with Cariappa, the evermodest Bucher considered his ever-vain and arrogant successor an able man – even 'better qualified than I was'. I.

17.11.47, No. 6/C-in-C, Bucher to Baldev Singh, ii. 11.6.48 & later 12.7.48/4.9.48, Nos. 1844 & 2247, Delhi to London, L/WS/1/1142, IOR iii. 19.6.48, No. AC/397, Cariappa to Bucher, iv. 30.8.48, No. 008/4/C-in-C, Gracey to Bucher, v. 5.9.48, No. 18/C-in-C, Bucher to Gracey, vi. 30.10.48, Gracey to Bucher, vii. 8.11.48, No. 18/C-in-C, Bucher to Gracey, viii. 29.11.48, No. 6/C-in-C, Bucher to Baldev Singh, ix. 19.12.48, No. 1550, Karachi to London, L/WS/1/1144, IOR x. 31.12.48, No. 17/C-in-C, Bucher to Nehru, xi. 29.11.48, No. 1461, Delhi to London, xii. 27.11.48, No. 1458, Karachi to London, xiii.6.12.48, No. 4193, Delhi to London, L/WS/1/1127, IOR

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History KASHMIR UNDER THE MUGHALS-II

Empire and Regional Identities PROF JIGAR MOHAMMED

K

ashmir has one of the historical regions of the Indian subContinent from ancient period onwards. Its people not only made history of their own, but more importantly they also participated in the processes of the making of the history of the other regions of the Indian sub-Continent. Kashmir was the region which introduced the art of historiography. Kalhan not only constructed the history of Kashmir, but also incorporated the historical events of other regions showing historicity of them. The establishment of rule of the Mauryan and Kushans in Kashmir led to the introduction and spread of Buddhism there. Before its annexation to the Mughal empire by the Mughal emperor Jalaluddin Muhammad Akbar (1556-1605) Kashmir was mostly ruled by the native rulers. The Karkota was the first native ruling dynasty which widened the contacts of Kashmir with other region. It is well established fact that its ruler Lalitaditya Muktapida (725-53 A.D) was one of the most successful conquerors of the world of 8th century A.D. The rulers of the Utpala, Lohara, Gupta and Damra dynasties maintained and strengthened the regional identity of Kashmir in terms of social and economic developments. Kashmir was only the region of India where women exercised socio-political authority in a big way. It produced three queens, Sugandha (904-06), Didda (9581003) and Kota Rani (1338-39) exercised huge political authority and established

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that women were eligible to acquire and command political power. With the establishment of the Sultanate under Shamsuddin Shah Mir in 1339 the processes of the territorial expansion and cultural contacts of Kashmir were intensified. The sultans of Kashmir, Shah Mir to Yusuf Shah Chak (1339-1586) largely respected the sentiments of the people of multi-social backgrounds and engaged the latter in the constructive works. Under the Sultanate of Kashmir many new crafts such as papier- machie, shawl-weaving, carpet making, calligraphy and sericulture etc were introduced. Sultan Zainul Abidin (1420-70) encouraged Kashmiri, Sanskrit and Persian literatures in Kashmir. Both the Sufism and Bhaktism flourished in Kashmir under the Sultans. It is important to mention both Nuruddin Rishi or Nand Rishi and Lal Ded or Lalleshwari, the voices of the subalterns of Kashmir developed and propagated the concepts of dignity of labour and inclusion during the Sultanate period. However, in 1586-87 Kashmir was annexed to the Mughal empire by the Mughal emperor Akbar. First time Kashmir became a part of the Mughal empire, famous all over world for its political grandeur and economic prosperity. Since Akbar believed in the concept of pluralism, he treated the regional identities of Kashmir as important as his own. Abul Fazl, a court or official historian of Akbar and author of the

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Akbarnama and Ain-i-Akbari, was instructed by the Mughal emperor to give due space to the regional identities in his historical works. Consequently, Abul Fazl discovered various cultural and physical identities of Kashmir and incorporated in his works so that others could know the characteristics of the Kashmiri culture. The Mughals not gave huge publicity to the existing cultural identities of Kashmir through their literary works, but they contributed significantly to the tracing of the history of Kashmir. Abul Fazl in his Ain-i-Akbari records some of the historical events of Kashmir showing how the Kashmiris worked to make themselves politically and economically noticeable by the world. The sincerity of the Mughals to the cause of the Kashmiris in terms of their history and culture can be estimated from the fact that when Abul Fazl initiated the processes of the discovery of the historical changes and developments in Kashmir. He tried his best to see them from the sources of Kashmir. Abul fazl found that the Rajtarangini was the most authentic source of the history of Kashmir. Consequently he utilized it for the tracing of the history of Kashmir. Abul Fazl discovers that historical developments of Kashmir in an inclusive way. His works contain the historical events from the policies and achievements of the political masters to the Amarnath shrine of Kashmir. It is important to mention that the Mughals

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had a very strong tradition of historiography and their history books were consulted throughout India during the 17th and 18th centuries. Since the Mughals had established a coalition form of the government, the description of the regional identities became a most popular medium of the interactions among multiple identities of India. To give a definite shape to the historical developments of Kashmir Abul Fazl studied the Rajatarangini and collected information from it regarding the history of Kashmir from earliest period to the first half of the 12th century A.D. Abul Fazl gives all credit to the Mughal emperor Akbar for tracing the historical and natural heritage of Kashmir. The extent of the Mughal emperor's interests in the heritage of Kashmiir can be estimated from some of the narratives of Abul Fazl. According to one of the narratives of Abul Fazl, “When the Imperial standards (Mughals) were for the first time born aloft in this garden of perpetual spring, a book called Raj Tarangini written in Sanskrit tongue containing account of the prices of Kashmir during a period of some four thousand years, was presented to His Majesty (Akbar). It had been the custom of that country (Kashmir) for its rulers to employ certain learned men in writing its annals. His Majesty who was desirous of extending the bounds of knowledge appointed capable interpreters in its translation which in a short time was highly accomplished. In this work it is stated that the whole of the mountainous region was submerged under water and called Sati Sar. Sati is the name of the wife of Mahadev, and Sar signifies the a lake. One day of Brahma comprises 14 manavantras. Up to the 40th year of the Divine Era, of the seventh manvantara, at which time Kashmir began to be inhabited, 27

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(Kalpas) each of four cycles (yug) as before mentioned, have elapsed and of the twenty-eighth three cycles and of the fourth cycles, 4701 solar years. And when, according to the legend which they relate, the waters had somewhat subsided, Kasyapa who is regarded as on of the most sublime among the ascetics, brought in the Brahmans to inhabit the new region. When men began to multiply they sought to have a just ruler over them and experienced elders, solicitous of the public weal met together in council and elected to the supreme authority one who was distinguished for his wisdom, his large understanding, his comprehensive benevolence and his personal courage.” ( A i n - i - A k b a r i , Vo l . I I , E n g l i s h translation, pp.375-76). It is very interesting and knowledgeable to mention that the Mughals tapped the information pertaining to the origin and growth of socio-political system of Kashmir in a historical perspective. Abul Fazl approximates the age of society and polity of Kashmir in accordance with the social and political changes in the region. For Abul Fazl, Ugnand was the first king of Kashmir who ruled 4044 years prior to 1595-96 A.D. Narrating the nature of the political power of the early kings of Kashmir Abul Fazl writes, “ Ugnand fell by the hand of Balbhadra, the elder brother of Kishan in the battle fought at Mathura between Kishan and Jarasandha raja of Behar. Damodara (his son), to avenge his death marched against some of the relations of Kishan who were hastening to a marriage festival in Qandhar, and was killed fighting on the banks of the Sind…Thirty five princes succeeded, but through their tyranny their names are no more remembered. When Lavah ascended the throne, their justice was universally administered and deeds met their just

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recognition. He founded in Kamraj the great city of Lavapur the ruins of which still to be traced.” The Mughals accepted that the Rajas and Sultans of Kashmir were very much conscious to their power and prestige. According to Abul fifty three kings reigned Kashmir during 1266 years. Abul Fazl's lists of the rulers of Kashmir mentions Ugnand as its first king and Yaqub Khan as the last sultan before the establishment of the Mughal rule in Kashmir. Once the Mughals made Kashmir part of their Indian empire, they devised a plan to keep the works of the previous rulers of the state memorable so that local people could make their histories as the sources of their inspiration. Abul Fazl mentions that Raja Pravarasena, a ruler of the ancient Kashmir, earned a huge fame through his good governance and constructive activities. Describing the achievements of the Raja Abul Fazl writes, “Pravarasena was universally distinguished for his justice and liberality. He founded Srinagar, the capital of the country (Kashmir) rendered it populous during his reign with 600,000 houses.” Similarly Raja Lalitaditya of 8th century A.D. Kashmir has been portrayed by Abul Fazl as one of the most powerful warriors of the world in terms of his territorial aggrandizement. For Abul Fazl, “Raja Lalitaditya devoted himself to the prosperity of his kingdom and in the strength of the divine aid overran Iran, Turan (Central Asia), Fars, Hindustan, Khata, and the whole hospitable globe, and administered his dominions with justice. He died in the mountains of the north, and it is said tha he was turned into stone by the curse of an ascetic, but others relate the story differently.” Through the identification of the political changes in Kashmir from the ancient period onwards the Mughals

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preserved and propagated that the Kashmiri ruling families followed the despotism which was most effective form of the government of the ancient and medieval period. But the Mughals also presented many Kashmiri rulers as enlightened and just. Abul Fazl found that the Sultan Zainul Abidin made Kashmir an active participant in Asia in terms of territorial expansion, public welfare activities, economic developments and promotion of knowledge. Abul Fazl make the works of Zainul Abidin memorable in these words, “Zainul Abidin overran Tibet and Sind. He was a wise prince, devoted to philosophical studies and it was his fortune to enjoy universal peace. He was regarded by high and low as a special servant of God and venerated as a saint. He was credited with the power of divesting himself of his corporal form, and he foretold that under the dynasty of the Chaks, the sovereignty of Kashmir would be transferred from that family to the monarchs of Hindustan, which prediction after a period of years was accomplished. His benevolence and love of his people induced him to prohibit the slaughtering of cows, as well as penalties and presents of all kinds. He added somewhat to the measure of the Jarib. His private revenues were drawn from copper mines. He often personally administered medicinal remedies and resolved all difficult undertakings with ease. Robbers were employed in chained gangs on public works. His gentleness of disposition dissuaded men from the pursuit of game, and he himself ate no flesh or meat. He caused many works to be translated from the Arabic, Persian, Kashmiri and Sanskrit languages. During his reign musician from Persia and Turkestan flocked to his court; among them Mulla Undi, the immediate pupil of the famous Khwajah

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Abdul Qadir arrived from Khurasan and Mulla Jamil who in singing and painting was pre-eminent among his contemporaries, Sultan Abu Said Mirza sent him presents of Arab horses and dromedaries from Khurasan and Bahlol Lodi King of Delhi and Sultan Mahmud of Gujarat were in friendly alliance with him.” The Mughals identified the religious centres of Kashmir. Abul Fazl depicts them in terms of their location, religious sanctity and existing structural conditions. He gives a graphic picture of

Through the identification of the political changes in Kashmir from the ancient period onwards the Mughals preserved and propagated that the Kashmiri ruling families followed the despotism which was most effective form of the government of the ancient and medieval period.

Amarnath shrine. According to him, “Between Great Tibet (Tibet-i-Kalan or Ladakh) …Parganah (Dachchhinparah) is a cave which an image in ice called Amar Nat. It is considered a shrine of great sanctity. When the new moon rises from her throne of rays, a bubble as it were of ice is formed in the cave which daily increases little by little fro fifteen days till it is somewhat higher than two yards; with the waning moon, the image likewise begins to decrease, till no trace of it remains when the moon disappears. They believe it to be the image of Mahadeva and regarded it as a means (through supplication) of

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fulfillment of their desires. Near the cave is a rill called Amraoti, the clay of which is extremely white. The snows of this mountainous tract nowhere melt, and from the extremely cold, the straitness of the defiles and the rough inequalities of road, they are surmounted with great toil.” But Abul Fazl identifies Martand in a dilapidated condition. He narrated it in these words, “Matan (Martand) stands upon a hill and once possessed a large temple. There is a small pool on the summit, the water of which never decreases. Some suppose this to be the Wall of Babylon, but at the present day there is no trace of anything but ordinary pit.” Through the recognition and propagation of the local identities of Kashmir the Mughals realized the Kashmiris that the latter's regional identities deserved to be highlighted and historically they were as useful as other identities of the Mughal India. It is well accepted that the Mughal emperor Akbar practiced and propagated the concept of 'peace with all' (Sulh-i-Kul), largely followed by his successors. Consequently, the literary men followed the concept of inclusion in selecting themes of their writings. Since Kashmir was an important frontier region of the Mughal empire, the Mughals understood it a their duty to it respecting the local identities. The descriptions of these identities by the Mughal literary works show that they treated the Kashmiris as the makers of their own histories. The Mughals also accepted that both empire and region could work together when the latter's cultural identities were respected by the empire. The Mughals' policy of the treating the regional identities as the basis of the strength of a region led to the intensification in the process of the association of the Kashmiris with the Mughal empire.

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Essay

Reconstructing Composite Culture

Ambiguity of Kashmiriyat NYLA ALI KHAN

The construction of “Kashmiriyat,” or a syncretic cultural ethos, by Sheikh Abdullah's NC involved culling selected cultural fragments from an imagined past that would enfold both the Pandits and the Muslims. But due to the regional sentiments that are so well entrenched in the psyche of the people, this attempt is still in a volatile stage.

T

he notion of “Kashmiriyat,” forged by my maternal grandfather Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah, was not handed down to me as an unachievable and abstract construct; on the contrary, it was crystallized for me as the eradication of a feudal structure and its insidious ramifications; the right of the tiller to the land he worked on; the unacceptability of any political solution that did not take the aspirations and demands of the Kashmiri people into consideration; the right of Kashmiris to high offices in education, the bureaucracy and government; the availability of medical and educational facilities in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh; the preservation of literatures, shrines and historical artifacts that defined an important aspect of “Kashmiriyat”; formation of the Constituent Assembly of J & K to institutionalize the constitution of the state in 1951, which was an enormous leap toward the process of democratization; the fundamental right of both women and men to free education up to the university level; equal opportunities afforded to both sexes in the workplace; the nurturing of a contact zone in social, political and intellectual ideologies and institutions; pride in a cultural identity that was generated in a space created by multiple perspectives.

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The notion of 'Kashmiriyat', or of the syncretism of Kashmir, as I mentioned earlier, was the secular credo of Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah, popularized in the 1940s and 50s to defeat the centralizing strategies of the successive regimes of independent India. This significant concept does not attempt to simplify the ambiguity and complexity of religious, social and cultural identities. It neither attempts to assert a fixed identity nor reinforce the idea of purity of culture. I would veer away from adopting an image of this secular credo that is created by the unitary discourses it deplores. On the contrary, “Kashmiriyat” brings about a metamorphosis in the determinate concept of the Indian state, and creates a situation in which the nation-states of India and Pakistan are forced to confront an alternative epistemology. At a time of political and social upheaval in the state, this notion engendered a consciousness of place that offered a critical perspective from which to formulate alternatives. Without negating the historicity of the notion, this theoretical fiction was deployed by Sheikh Abdullah's NC in order to forge a strategic essentialism that would enable the creation of a sovereign Kashmiri identity. It certainly was not a lawless notion, as Mridu Rai (ibid.: 296) is quick to point out: “. . .

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this notion of cultural harmony was predicated on the requisite condition of protecting Kashmiri Pandit privileges and a consequent subsumption of the majority of Muslims.” Professor R. L. Hangloo, eminent historian of Kashmiri Pandit descent at the University of Hyderabad provided a complex and concise definition of 'Kashmiriyat': Kashmiriyat is a far wider concept than the harmonious relationship cutting across religious and sectarian divisions. Kashmiriyat is the externally endowed and internally evolved phenomenon of co-existence at the social, religious, political, spatial, cultural and other institutional levels among Kashmirees of all shades that inhabited Kashmir. Kashmiriyat has evolved as a result of special circumstances that are rooted in Kashmir's topographical centrality that entitled Kashmir to imbibing, interacting and assimilating a variety of world cultures in consonance with Kashmiri sensibilities that reflect a nuanced and sophisticated approach that did not disturb the patterns of production and cultural manners reflecting the Kashmiri genius. This specificity has stemmed from the historical processes that the region of Kashmir has embraced both in peace and turmoil for centuries. Kashmir has always been surrounded by some of the world's

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Essay Reconstructing Composite Culture

greatest civilizations such as China, Persia/Iran, Central Asia and India. Kashmir and Kashmirees were always at the center of this world and not on the periphery which is reflected in the assimilation of their residual practices of religions. Note that while Kashmir maybe on a fairly marginal point on the map of the state of India, Kashmir as a region was historically at the epicenter of a much larger world space and world civilization. This centrality endowed the region with a superiority and self identity that has assimilated the social and religious-cultural traditions of this greater region and traits of greater cultures throughout history to evolve and strengthen what came to constitute Kashmiriyat. This sense of superior self identity has grown over centuries as Kashmiriyat among Kashmirees both within and out side Kashmir. Living together, untroubled by diversities of religion, racial, cultural, material, and political and other identities, the notion of Kashmiriyat became the bedrock of identity which consolidated itself increasingly when Islam entered into the Valley. Before the thirteenth century, even though there were plural religious sects, they neither saw eye to eye with each other nor were they external to Kashmir in totality. Shaivites facilitated the decline of Buddhists in Kashmir; the Vaishnavas had to keep their identity concealed to escape the wrath of the Shaivites. The pre-Islamic history is replete with religious, ethnic, racial and other conflicts. The battles of Dammaras, Ekangas, Tantrins, Khasas and others were perpetual features of pre-Islamic Kashmiri society. There was a long drawn conflict and contestation within Islamic society before rapprochement took place between the orthodox Muslims and heterodox sects. The entrance of Islam in Kashmir coincided with the end of this struggle. It was this rapprochement that disallowed Kashmirees from seeing any contradic-

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tion between the preaching of Islam and the practice of upholding the Heretical tradition (that is, acknowledging the divine power of the local, the Rishi) in Kashmir. Therefore the kind of Islam that entered Kashmir was devoid of any orthodoxy. It was only after the arrival of Islam that Lalleshwari and Sheikh Noor -ud-din (Nund Reshi) interacted to produce the atmosphere and philosophy of co-existence and tolerance at popular level. This interaction entailed massive changes in the world view of Kashmirees that reflected a truly remarkable and world encompassing shift in every aspect of their sensibility as well. Uncertainty about the status of the former princely state has loomed large since 1947. In an atmosphere of unpredictability, in the frightening darkness of political intrigue, in the paranoia of political deception, the fungi of undemocratic policies and methods continue to grow unabated. The unresolved Kashmir dispute poses a danger of monstrous proportions to the stability of the Indian subcontinent. Is the former princely state of J & K a postcolonial state? Postcolonialism refers to a phase undergone after the decline and dismantling of the European empires by the mid-twentieth century, when the peoples of many Asian, African and Caribbean countries were left to create new governments and forge national identities. The ideology that has been propounded by the governments of India and Pakistan reflects and produces the interests of state-sponsored agencies and institutionson both sides of the Line of Control (LOC). These institutions have couched the debased discourse of exploitation in the language of culture and religion, a strategy that has led to the relegation of the subjectivity, historical understanding and traditions of the Kashmiri populace. As the eminent PalestinianAmerican scholar Edward Said (1991: 29)

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noted, “All human activity depends on controlling a radically unstable reality to which words approximate only by will or convention.” Representatives of the privileged centre of power silence the voices that are on the margins of mainstream society and politics. These privileged centres have always constrained reality by imposing their ideological schema, which underpins their powerful positionality, on it. Their ability to conjure images and restretch boundaries that serve their set of beliefs has rendered them a force to reckon with. These ideas expounded by the powers-that-be portray Kashmiris as a stereotypical and predictable entity. This delineation of the Kashmiri subject was foregrounded by an imperial agent of the British Raj, Sir Walter Lawrence, Settlement Commissioner of J & K, in his The Vale of Kashmir ([1895] 2005). This politically and culturally misleading portrayal of the Kashmiri subject has been underscored by the policies of the governments of India and Pakistan vis-à-vis Jammu and Kashmir, which is why the authority of democratically elected representatives in that region has always been curbed. The policies of the two governments follow the much-trodden path of totalitarianism and spell a pattern of doom for Kashmir. The unnecessary and unjustified postponement of the resolution of the Kashmir conflict has insidiously gnawed at the tenuous relations between India and Pakistan. The issue has also, for better or worse, been thrust on to the stage of global politics, and its volatility has contributed to the destabilization of the Indian subcontinent. Josef Korbel (2002: 304) wrote with foresight that “whatever the future may have in store, the free world shares with India and Pakistan common responsibility for the fate of democracy and it awaits with trepidation the solution of the Kashmir problem. Its own security may depend on such a settlement.”

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Random Notes

Signposts in Kashmir MANISHA SOBHRAJANI

Agha Shahid Ali wrote in his poem Postcard from Kashmir: Kashmir shrinks into my mailbox, my home a neat four by six inches I always loved neatness. Now I hold the half-inch Himalayas in my hand. For me, the various signposts one comes across while travelling the length and breadth of the state is what defines Kashmir. Travelling through Jammu & Kashmir by road is a visual delight: not just in the stunning landscape, but also in the most unusual little experiences on the way. And the more than interesting signposts by the BRO (Border Roads Organisation) add to the excitement of the journey. I was pointing towards one such signpost to Hussain sa'ab, who has driven me around the Valley right from my very first visit there. We were driving towards district Kupwara, and the signpost read: 'Be gentle on my curves.' Hussain got so distracted by the signpost and my giggles that he missed a security personnel waving his lathi to stop us. When we realised what we had done and what the repercussions could be, my whole life ran in front of my eyes like a movie clip in a matter of a few seconds. My thoughts were for my daughter whom I had promised a trip to the Valley (a promise which was later fulfilled). Luckily, we escaped with some rude words thrown in our direction, an extrathorough check of the vehicle, and threats to be more careful while driving around in Kashmir!

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As we moved on in our journey, the next signpost read: 'Driving is a pleasure when done at leisure!' I couldn't help but smile. On a trip to district Poonch, I decided to visit Chakan-da-Bagh. Sentiments were high in lieu of the cross-border trade between the two sides of Kashmir, and there was talk of the exchange of goods being stopped for various political reasons. As I neared the TRC point, there were several signposts which were high on emotions. One read: 'Sarhadein zameen baant sakti hain, dil nahin', while the other said: 'Kashmir se Kanyakumari tak Bharat ek hai.' I was once travelling from Srinagar to district Ramban, and after we crossed the Jawahar tunnel, a signpost said: 'BEACON – jo chahe kar dikhae; Coca-Cola – enjoy!' Perhaps it was referring to the enormity of the task BEACON had accomplished in building something as mammoth as the Jawahar tunnel. In district Rajouri, on my way to Surankote, monkeys lined the road, waiting for kind travellers who might feed them. As if on cue, a signpost appeared: 'Dosti – yeh dil maange more!'... Surankote has an interesting history. Not many years from now, there was no formal administrative set-up in the area, including that of the security forces. Only after Operation Sarpvinash, in the year 2002-03, did things begin to change. A stark reminder

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of the history of the area as well as the general current scenario in Kashmir, a signpost read: 'Kashmir – neighbour's envy, owner's pride.' Of all my travels in J&K, the most fascinating has been the one from Leh to Kargil, and it has found mention in previous editions of this space. The Ladakhi landscape was a complete contrast to that of the Valley, which I had almost gotten used to: many shades of green and curvaceous land, beautiful sights complete with little brooks, a wholesome feeling of abundance... The contours of Ladakh surprised me with hard, rigid and brown landscapes which were almost unwelcoming in their appearance, but of course had an unmatched beauty about them. The mountains stood very proud and majestic. There were many reminders, in the form of signposts, which gave the message loud and clear that one was very close to the so-called borders, that there was danger lurking at every corner, and that it was not advisable to stop anywhere for very long. One of them read: 'You are being watched by the enemy!' I have had the opportunity to travel far and wide, but I must confess that no other landscape excites me or touches my heart as much as that of Jammu & Kashmir. To sum it up in the words of Oliver Goldsmith: 'Wherever I roam, whatever realms to see, My heart untravelled fondly turns to thee.'

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Sports PREPARING FOR COMMONWEALTH GAMES:

What ails Indian Sports? C. THIRUGNANA DURAI

F

rom Airport to pavements along the road, India is spending so much to make the Commonwealth games (to be held in New Delhi later this year) a huge success. Understandably, after the great Olympic games held by China recently, India would like to have a fitting parallel to showcase its ability to organize a similar event. Undoubtedly, India has the potential to organize a huge event. But the real question that needs to be answered is: what will be India's medals tally, when the Commonwealth games come to an end? Of course, none can beat India in a South Asian Federation games. But once, it becomes international, India's efforts always were found wanting. Forget international, even at the Asia level, India will not be able to be in the top four. In 2006 Asiad, held in Doha Qatar, China led the tally with 166 Golds, followed by South Korea and Japan. India with just 10 Gold medals was eighth in the tally. Countries like Kazakhastan, Uzbekistan and Thailand were ahead of India. The forthcoming Commonwealth, and later the Asiad in China will not be any different for India, in terms of medal tally. The reasons are not hard to understand; three issues mar Indian sports and games, preventing India from moving ahead â&#x20AC;&#x201C; quality of sportsmen, quality of coaches and complete public apathy. First reason is so obvious. Go to any school, near your home and find out who picks up games and sports. Except for Cricket (and to an extent hockey and basket ball), there is no voluntary interest amongst the young students to become a

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sportsmen. It is only those students, who are average in studies and who are considered to be not bright in studies pick up sports and games. This trend continues at college levels. How many science students have one come across, who have an interest in sports and games? Certain Social science subjects like Politics, History and Philosophy have become an exclusive domain of sportsmen. In fact social sciences, in most cases, have become the refuge of students who could not clear science subjects. By the time, a sportsman finishes his college (which is a rarity), his or immediate interest is to get a government job, based on a sports quota. Only in rare cases, there is passion towards the sports, for he or she rarely come across any encouragement either from his family, or the school or the government. Simply, there is no incentive to shine well. Second major failure of Indian sports and games is the lack of quality coaches. It is very unfortunate, most of the coaches who train our sportsmen, have no practical knowledge. In the first place, they have a degree from National Institute of Sports. If Sports is the last profession, any brilliant student would like to pursue, physical education as a science, is even worse, in terms of attracting students to get a degree. In fact, most of the students who take up physical education as a degree course are those who could not join any other course, nor get a sports quota to opt for a better course. When he is appointed as a coach, he would have hardly won a medal, even at

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the national level. Absolutely, he has no experience at the international level. He does not know or even understand the modern day techniques to coach his students. Nor would he understand what causes pain and what causes injury to his sportsmen. The hard truth is, when the other countries have surgeons, we are still depending on quacks! The government and its sports authorities need to share the blame. Neither it gives adequate incentives to those sincere coaches, who wants to make a change. Nor, it spends on foreign coaches who could train our sportsmen. Even if a foreign coach is appointed, his a two years tenure. Thanks to the false coaching by earlier coaches, it takes one year for the foreign coaches to make the sportsmen understand the right techniques. Any change in strategy and technique, in the initial period is likely to result in reducing performance of sportsmen. Unfortunately, sportsmen do not understand the importance of training through right technique; he gets back to his old local coaching style, and never ends up in improving the performance. Finally, the civil society should share the larger blame. It is very unfortunate, the obsession with cricket, has ensured that no other sporting activity enjoys any support. How many know about sportsmen in track and field events? How many would encourage their sons to become a sportsman/woman outside cricket and perhaps tennis? There is so much family pressure at the school level that no student dares to become an athlete.

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epilogue

Of Peace and Places LAHORE:

New Violence, Old Issue D SUBA CHANDRAN

L

ahore is increasingly under attack. Considered to be the cultural capital of Pakistan, the city recently witnessed twin attacks. First set of attacks took place in two mosques belonging to the Ahmadis, and later in a hospital, where the victims of the mosque attacks were being treated. Who has committed these atrocious attacks? That too in Lahore? And why against the Ahmadis? There is enough evidence to prove that these attacks have been carried out by the sectarian militants of Punjab, who are now increasingly being referred as the Punjabi Taliban. Belonging to the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) and the Sipahe-Sahaba (SSP), the sectarian militants have been pursuing an internal jihad, primarily against the Shias in Punjab, in and around Jhang district. Besides, Punjab, there have also been sectarian attacks in Karachi, FATA (primarily in Orakzai and Kurram Agencies) and in the Northern Areas (primarily around Gilgit). Ever since the American led international troops landed in Afghanistan, there has been an intense military response from the Taliban. In this process, a new entity was created in the FATA region – Tehrik-e-Taliban (TTP) which came to be referred as the Pakistani Taliban. More importantly, many sectarian and jihadi militant groups such as the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi and Sipah-e-Sahaba (both, primarily from Punjab) and the Tehreek-e-Nafaze-Shariat-e-Mohammad (TNSM), which

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was fighting in Malakand for the imposition of Sharia, and the Jaish-eMohammad (JeM) sent its cadres to fight either along with the Afghan Taliban and the TTP. In this process, they became a part of the larger Taliban movement in Pakistan – the TNSM came to be referred as the Swat Taliban, while the cadres of the LeJ, SSP and JeM are now being referred as the Punjabi Taliban. In a way, Taliban has become a franchise organization, and other organizations its franchisees. Most of these organizations, for example the LeJ, SSP and TNSM were created much before the Taliban was founded in Afghanistan. Though the JeM was formed by Masood Azhar, after he was released in exchange for the hijacked Indian Airlines plane, most of the Jaish cadres were in fact from the Harkat-ulMujahideen, which got split. Most of these organizations are sectarian and jihadi; they have been waging a sectarian jihad, primarily against the Shias, for the last two decades. Now, the second question, why Lahore? This city in Punjab has a long history of tolerance and known for its cosmopolitan outlook, and rich heritage, and undoubtedly is the cultural capital for the entire Pakistan. Unfortunately, these very factors seem to attract the religious Right and radical militants to win over Lahore. For the last couple of years, Lahore has been under attack by both the religious Right and the militants. Led by Jamaat-eIslami and other religious political par-

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ties, under the banner of the MMA, the Rightist forces have been attacking Lahore, in terms of destroying its secular fabric. One of the most colorful festivals of Lahore, for which it is known at the global level – the kite festival, the traditional Punjabi Basant, was under attack by the Right. Fatwas were issued, calling the celebration of Basant un-Islamic and there were organized protests against the celebration of this festival. The religious Right, also made attempts to mar many other secular events – for example, the annual marathon race, which used to include men and women. The Right objected to women running the Marathon on religious grounds. 'Capture Lahore' has been an unstated political project of the religious Right in Pakistan. The political jihad against the Basant and Marathon are mere strategies of this larger political objective. This is because, Lahore is seen as a secular capital and culturally vibrant. Now, the militants also seem to have jumped into this bandwagon to 'Capture Lahore'. But, unlike the political Right, the primary objective of the militant groups is different. The sectarian groups, led by the SSP and LeJ, have never targeted Lahore, in a major way. However, in the recent years, as a part of the Punjabi Taliban, they have been attacking Lahore. There were numerous suicide attacks in Lahore and the almost calamitous attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team last year. These attacks were

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Essay Reconstructing Composite Culture

being carried out by the Punjabi Taliban, instigated and organized by the TTP, either as a warning or a revenge. It is no secret, that the TTP is extremely upset with the ongoing military operations against the militants in the FATA. Whenever a major military operation is launched or about to be launched, the TTP have always attempted to respond with a ferocious attack in Lahore, Rawalpindi and Islamabad. One could see a clear pattern in these attacks in the major cities. The TTP seems to be delivering a message: if you come into our territory, we will counter attack, where it hurts you the most. Finally, the last question: why Ahmadis? While Shia community has been the primary targets of the sectarian organsiations like the SSP and LeJ, Ahmadis were never a part of this larger organized sectarian attack. However, this is not the whole truth. Yes, the

Ahmadis have never been under any organized attack, as it happened in Lahore last week, where two of their mosques were attacked, resulting in the killing of more than 80 people. But if one has to look into what is happening vis-à-vis the Ahmadis, especially in Punjab over the last two decades, one could see another pattern led by the State, Society and the militant organizations. Ever since the controversial promulgation of Ordinance XX in April 1984, titled “Anti-Islamic Activities of the Ahmadis (Prohibition and Punishment) Ordinance, 1984” by Zia-ul-Haq, the Ahmadis have been under a systematic attack. More than 100 people have been murdered as a part of target killings. Earlier, it was the most secular of all Pakistani leaders – Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, in 1974, constitutionally declared Ahmadis as non-Muslims. If Bhutto did

this to pacify the Islamic Right, then led by the Jamaat-e-Islami, Zia passed the XX Ordinance, to prove his Islamic credentials, to win the 1984 referendum. Much before, in 1953, the religious political parties led a pogram, resulting in the killing of more than 2000 Ahmadis. Unfortunately, the courts became a silent partner to these constitutional deprivations and extra constitutional executions. In fact, the interpretations of the blasphemy law by the courts, have resulted in numerous verdicts, that have harmed the Ahmadis over the years. What the Taliban doing today, is only carrying on what the secular, dictatorial and religious leaders started in Pakistan – a hysteria against the Ahmadis. Blaming the militants alone for the persecution of Ahmadis is abdicating the responsibilities of the State, Society and its judiciary.

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Vol. 4, Issue 7

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Event Report

Presiding Officers’ Conference

LEGISLATURE Presiding Officers appeal Legislators to make Executive Accountable by Smooth House Proceedings

Almost 23 years after Srinagar hosted the Presiding Officers' Conference, the heads of the all legislative bodies from country again gathered in the summer capital on June 19 for a four-day Conference which deliberated upon key issued pertaining smooth conduct of business in legislative Houses. This was 75 t h Conference of Presiding Officers. Srinagar had earlier hosted similar conferences in 1954, 1970 and 1987. For Jammu and Kashmir Government and particularly for the Legislative Assembly Secretariat, the Speaker Mohammad Akbar Lone, Deputy Speaker Mohammad Sartaj Madni and Secretary Mohammad Ramzan it was great success as Presiding Officers drawn from across the country, including Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, had a great time in Srinagar and had meaningful discussions. In a elaborate programme which included photo exhibitions and symposia, the Presiding Officers deliberated on two key issues: “growing tendency to disrupt the Question Hour and the need to check it” and “the significance of committee system in Parliament and the need to strengthen it”. The Conference discussed various aspects regarding the rules of the House, House Committee and other matters relating to the functioning of the Assemblies and Councils. The Conference also discussed the agenda with regard to 'resignation of the Member from State Assembly for contesting the Parliamentary elections'-'implication of non-acceptance of resignation by the Speaker' and 'violation of Members protocol- need to evolve a procedure'.

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Event Report Presiding Officers’ Conference

“Question Hour has a special significance in the proceedings of the House, particularly in ventilating the grievances of the public in the matters concerning the administration and working matters, concerning the administration and working of the Ministers and their allied departments and organizations, said the Speaker, Lok Sabha, Meira Kumar in her inaugural address. She pointed out that some key decisions have in the recent past been taken to increase the efficacy of the Question Hour which will be operative from the Fifth Session of the Fifteenth Lok Sabha. These procedural changes will meet the long felt need to regulate the Question Hour in the Lok Sabha more effectively, she added. Elaborating on the decision, Meria Kumar said the hitherto minimum and maximum period of 10 and 21 days respectively, for giving notices by the Members for Questions has been done away with and a uniform period of fifteen days has been prescribed for giving such notices. Secondly, the Speaker has

now been vested with powers to direct answer to a Starred Question of a member who is absent in the House when his or her name is called. Thirdly, a Member is now required to make a statement in the House correcting the reply given by him or her earlier, irrespective of the fact whether the reply given pertained to a Starred or Unstarred or a Short Notice Question. Fourthly, the number of notices of Questions which a Member is entitled to give, both for oral and written answers in a day, has been limited to ten. She said these procedural changes will meet the long-felt mud to regulate the Questions Hour in the Lok Sabha effectively. She said asking questions is an inherent right of members in our parliamentary democracy and emphasized “that the interest of the people can be better served by ensuring that the House runs in order.” “Question Hour being the very first hour, sets the mood of the House for the day. Its disruption adversely affects the proceedings of the entire day. In addition, whenever, the question hour is disrupted, people are

deprived of a great deal of information on various aspects of the functioning of the Government. It blocks the flow of Information from the Executive to the Legislature and from the legislature to the people, thus causing a serious blow to the principle of accountability”, she added. She said the Question Hour has sanctity of its own as the primary device available to Members to demand the Government to explain its acts of omission and commission and also its stand on a variety of subjects of public importance. It is, therefore, the duty of every Presiding officer, the Speaker said to maintain the inviolability of the Question Hour and hoped this Conference will discuss the relevant issues in their proper perspectives for evolving an effective solution to prevent frequent disruption of the Question Hour. Meria Kumar also referred the some business transacted during the Budget Session held on February 22 to May 7, 2010 and said the course of the

RESOLUTION “The Presiding Officers of Legislative Bodies in India, assembled at their 75thConference in Srinagar on 21 June, 2010 reemphasize the need and significance of Committee system for securing accountability of the Executive to the Legislatures through in depth scrutiny of budget, monitoring and review of performance of the Ministries and Departments of Government; making Government spending and working more transparent; detailed scrutiny of legislative proposals and examination of policy initiatives of Government. The Conference note that though Committee system has been widely acclaimed as the best suited device for asserting Parliamentary scrutiny and control over Executive, it has not yet been implemented in many Legislatures in the country. The Conference further note that notwithstanding the universal acknowledgment of benefits of Committee system, the functioning and efficacy of this system is not uniform in all Legislatures in India. The Conference firmly believe that Legislatures can be successful only if they have an effective Committee system in place. The Conference desire that the Committee system, in particular the Standing Committees, be implemented in all Legislatures in the country expeditiously. The Conference further desire that urgent measures be taken for removal of inadequacies, wherever prevailing, in the existing Committee systems. With a view to making the Committees independent in the true sense of the term, Ministers should not be Chairpersons of the Committees. The Conference finally resolve that based on the experience of Parliamentary Committees, as far as practicable, all Legislatures in India may adopt a uniform Committees system”.

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Event Report Presiding Officers’ Conference

Session, the Lok Sabha held 32 sittings spread over nearly 138 hours. During this period, the House transacted important financial, Legislative and other business, including the adoption of the Motion of Thanks on the Address by the President. Coming to the topics of deliberation at this Conference, Ms Meria Kumar said “we will be discussing two subjects of enormous parliamentary importance, namely, Growing Tendency to Disrupt the Question Hour and the need to check it, and significance of the committee system in parliament and the need to strengthen it”. She said with the increasing business and expanding functions of modern legislatures, there has been a corresponding increase in the use of Committees in almost all our Legislative Bodies. In fact, the committee system has been widely acclaimed as the best suited device for detailed scrutiny of the administrative actions for enforcing executive accountability to the legislature and, through it, to the people at large, she added. Meria Kumar said this Conference of Presiding Officers is a platform where we can learn from one another's experiences in managing the affairs of our Houses more professionally. “I earnestly hope that this Conference will go a long way in further streamlining the working of our parliamentary institutions”. The Speaker, Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly, Mohammad Akbar Lone has said that Jammu and Kashmir is the only State in India which enjoys special status under Article-370 of the constitution of India. “J&K is the only State which has its own State Flag and Constitution”, he added. In his welcome address at the inaugural session of 75th All India Presiding Officer's Conference at Srinagar today,

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Mr. Lone said that the State Legislature holds the credit for making the most significant laws such as “Land to the Tiller” under “The J&K Big Landed Estates Abolition Act”, the Agrarian Reforms Act, the “Ante Defection Law”, the provision for attachment of immovable property of corrupt public servants

The Conference decided to constitute a Committee of Presiding Officers to look into the problem of disruption of Question Hour, which may also suggest an effective solution to this problem. The Deputy Chairman, Rajya Sabha K. Rehman Khan will be the Chairman of the Committee. The other members of the Committee will be Speaker, Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly, N. Kiran Kumar Reddy, Speaker, Arunachal Pradesh Legislative Assembly, Wanglin Lowangdong, Speaker, Chhattisgarh Vidhan Sabha, Dharam Lal Kaushik, Speaker, Gujarat Legislative Assembly, Ashok Chandulal Bhatt, Speaker J&K, Mr. Mohammad Akbar Lone, Speaker Rajasthan Vidhan Sabha, Mr. Deependra Singh Shekhawat and Speaker, Uttar Pradesh, Sukhdeo Rajbhar. under “Anti Corruption Act” and J&K State Lands, (Vesting of ownership to the occupants) Act, called the “Roshni Act”. He Said that “this conference has brought all of us together, once again, to share our experiences based on certain procedural issues which we will be discussing here, with the objective to arrive upon a consensus to show new

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horizons to implement our Parliamentary system smoothly and without any un-warranted interruptions. “We, as the Presiding Officers of the people's representative Bodies are expected to preserve and uphold the conventions, regulations, rules and procedures of the Democratic system to make it more accountable to the public”, he added. Being the elected representatives of the people and the Presiding Officers, we have the responsibility to come up to the expectations of general masses at large. He said that we many often, are faced with certain procedural hurdles in the discharge of our professional duties and we are expected to search for their immediate solutions. On numerous occasions, many unexpected incidents and episodes take place during the proceedings of the House, encroaching upon the constitutional boundaries and creating procedures crisis. He said under the circumstances, we are to rely on our knowledge, intelligence, conscience and experience to take appropriate decisions legitimately, on the spot, to maintain the decorum and the dignity of the House to sustain the constitutional obligations. But it has always been observed that the decisions taken by us under such circumstances are not agreeable to all, as they do not find it favourable to them. He said that, the Questions on impartiality of the Presiding Officer's have become a ritual. So, our prime objective in this conference is to arrive upon a consensus to uphold the traits of democracy by evolving new Parliamentary definitions based upon the exchange of views, ideas and experiences, which may prove beneficial for the effective conduct of Legislative process in its best form.

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Event Report Presiding Officersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Conference

SYMPOSIA Performance of the legislators in the House Ensuring accountability to the people

OMAR ABDULLAH

T

he smooth functioning of Legislative Houses is an important means to derive accountability from the executive. Unless legislators allow the Houses to run without disturbing its proceedings, they will not be able to derive answers to their questions from the Government and make it accountable of its functioning. The legislators fail in their responsibilities if they are not able to make the Government answerable in the House. This can only be achieved when the proceedings are not disturbed and treasury benches made accountable for their duties and commitments to the people. It becomes easy for the Ministers to avoid volleys of supplementaries and questions when the question hour gets disturbed and House adjourned. in the present day legislative business it has been observed that the members when in Government benches teach and preach for maintaining order in the House but when same members are in the opposition they try to create pandemonium compelling the Presiding Officer to adjourn the House. Time has come that we should abdicate this practice and make the Houses as roll models for entire world to emulate niceties and discipline from these. It is also being observed in the Houses that many members consume longer times in making their speeches without making any good impact while others make much impact and raise

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larger issues in shorter speeches. This technique and aptitude is all the more relevant and befitting. The idea of vibrant, independent and accountable legislature is central to make democracy work. He said democracy thrives where the legislative bodies act as the pivotal institutions of scrutiny. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It is therefore imperative that those associated with the functioning of these institutions devise ways and means to assess and monitor their performance. The legislative bodies have also to choose how the important pillar of democracy, the media, is utilized to help make the Government accountable

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and derive answers from the executive about the governance and delivery. In Jammu and Kashmir we have taken several steps to streamline the working of the State Legislature and to ensure greater accountabilityâ&#x20AC;Ś during the last budget session in Jammu and Kashmir Assembly, no day of business was lost and no question hour adjourned despite attempts of disturbing the proceedings. I attribute this to the able conduct of business by the Speaker Mohammad Akbar Lone and Deputy Speaker Sartaj Madni. The Business Advisory Committee of both the Houses of J&K Legislature, representing all political parties has

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taken unanimous decision not to disrupt question hour at any stage. The rules of procedure and conduct of business in the House have been amended to make it binding on the Government to implement the recommendations of various House Committees within six months from the date of presentation of such report or the interim report in the House. Meanwhile, I welcome the Speaker of Lok Sabha, Meira Kumar and participant delegates from all across the country and am sure that their stay in the Valley will make them understand that the Valley does not depict that picture on law and order front as is projected outside the State. We are facing difficulties but the process of restoring peace and tranquility is moving on. The law and order problem in some parts of Srinagar city does not mean that entire Valley is disturbed. I to the Presiding Officers and other participants to narrate the real story of the Valley in their States and make people to visit here again and again to enjoy the beauty bestowed upon the State by the God. Tell your people that natives of Kashmir are hospitable and they are eagerly waiting for your visit in the beautiful valley having exciting, enchanting and charming places of natural beauty in plenty with hospitability flowing through our blood.

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Meira Kumar

W

e all know what makes a good legislator, the need is to practice what we know. A thorough knowledge of the rules and conventions and their proper application, developing the habit of listening, developing specialization in some select areas, regularly attending the sittings of the House and its Committees and above all, a commitment to serve the people are the qualities that make a good and effective legislator. One can immensely benefit by listening to the speeches delivered by eminent parliamentarians and take note of the way they manage to catch the Speaker's eye and have their say on the floor of the House. The effectiveness of a legislature squarely depends on the ability and sincerity of its members. If the legislators perform their duties sincerely, the entire nation is proud of them. If, however, their performance falls short of people's expectations, the legislative body is bound to suffer from performance-deficit, compromising its role as a law-making and oversight body. It is the members' participation and conduct in the House that determines the standing of the Legislature. Members' inability to perform the assigned roles in the House can throw the entire system out of gear, leaving an opening for other branches of the State to encroach upon the areas that legitimately belong to the Legislature. We have shown to the world that despite the pre-dominance of an oppressive and discriminatory social structure all through our history, the Indian soil could germinate concepts and ideas of republicanism. When members enter the Chamber of a House, they are fully aware of the sanctity of the place and their role in upholding its dignity. I strongly believe that all members of a Legislature strive to be instrumental in promoting the welfare of the people. They feel very strongly about issues pertaining to their electorate and want to articulate them in the House. Their zeal may sometimes also lead to disruption of scheduled business of the House. It is my conviction that no member comes to the Parliament with an intention to disrupt its proceedings or create disturbances. As Presiding Officers, it is our responsibility to device measures that give every member a fair chance to bring to the House concerns about his or her constituency and national issues. We must remember that members are responsible not only for passing legislations but also for transforming the society by changing mindsets. We have for long had very forwardlooking laws for removing and eradicating social evils-laws against dowry, against untouchability, against child labour etc., yet we have not been able to root out these practices from our mindset. This has happened not because there were not laws against them but because the laws by themselves are not enough. What is needed is attitudinal change. When socially relevant issues are raised by the members in the House, when these issues are discussed when debates on such issues, especially issues aimed at bringing about radical reform, are telecast live, they have invaluable role in putting before the people our commitment to change and reform. There have been numerous occasions when the content and quality of a debate has created a wide resonance in the society that has in turn helped building consensus on essential reform. Hence, we as Presiding Officers need to encourage high quality debates on socially relevant issues which will enable the legislators to discharge their responsibilities as agents of social change. It is, in fact the need of the hour to devise more of such innovative methods which will open up a dialogue between the elected and the electors and provide the electorate with an opportunity to have a greater say in the functioning of their elected representatives thereby enhancing their accountability to those who have sent them to the Legislature. With these words, I hope that the deliberations of the Symposium will be able to address our concerns about the performance of our members and their accountability to the people.

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Event Report Presiding Officersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Conference

Arvinder Singh Mickey

A

legislator in order to derive accountability has to develop many qualities and set an example for the people to follow. The first and foremost of such qualities is transparency. In the process of strengthening the national democratic set up media has attained the position of third pillar. We have to encourage media to play more positive role to add to the process of socio-legal development and give wide coverage to the proceedings of the Houses in day to day working. The intellectual people having a sound background power need to be encouraged to enter the political arena, as education is one of the most essential qualities which a legislator must have. A legislator is duty bound to provide for the best education and health care facilities to the people through welfare schemes. We in this state are trying our best to provide the best education and health care at the grass roots and achieve a lot with the financial assistance from the centre government. The sense of accountability is now where recorded in any constitution, the acting Chairman said that it can be extracted by the inner consciousness and not by legal means.

Secretaries for insulating Question Hour from disruptions and adjournments

O

n the sidelines of Presiding Officers' conference, the Conference of Secretaries of Legislative Bodies in India was held in the Committee Room of the Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly. The Conference was inaugurated by the Secretary-General, Lok Sabha and Chairman of the Conference, P.D.T. Achary. Highlighting the major developments of parliamentary and procedural significance since the Conference last met in Bhopal in February 2010, the Secretary-General, Lok Sabha, P.D.T. Achary referred to the various landmark decisions taken by the Speaker, Lok Sabha, Meira Kumar, with a view to further improving the functioning of the Lok Sabha. In this context, the Secretary-General referred to the historic ruling on Cut Motion wherein the Lok Sabha Speaker, for the first time, respecting and upholding the constitutional rights of the members of the House, allowed moving of the Cut Motion on the Demands for Grants, which were not discussed in the House and were to be guillotined. Achary also made a reference to

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the Speaker's Ruling on an Adjournment Motion during the recently-concluded Budget Session of Parliament. The issue involved the complicated question, whether the 'price rise' which no doubt was a matter of urgent public importance had an element of emergency and whether it could be considered for discussion under an Adjournment Motion. He also made a mention about the measures being taken to insulate the Question Hour from disruptions and adjournments. Addressing the Conference, the Secretary-General, Rajya Sabha, Dr. V. K. Agnihotri enumerated various initiatives taken by the Hon'ble Chairman, Rajya Sabha. He referred to the passing of the Women's Reservation Bill in the Rajya Sabha and the introduction of a new Integrated Talk time Management and Display System in that House which indicates the names of members participating in various debates and discussions, their party affiliations, division numbers, total time allotted to different parties, time consumed and time left for members individually and for

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political parties. He highlighted the constitution of a Committee on reduction in use of paper in the functioning of the Rajya Sabha with a view to minimising the consumption of paper and its wastage. Secretary, Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly, Mohammed Ramzan said that the main objective of the Conference is to have a detailed discussion on the administrative and procedural obstacles confronted by the Secretaries and to find solutions to the same by way of soliciting the suggestions from this august body. He expressed hope that besides sharing the experiences and changes in the parliamentary practices, the Conference will prove fruitful and effective in enhancing the dignity of the Legislatures. Besides the Secretary-General, Lok Sabha, and the SecretaryGeneral Rajya Sabha, Secretaries and Principal Secretaries of the State Legislatures in India attended the Conference. Seven subjects of procedural interest were discussed in the Conference.

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Dated : 14-6-2010

STATE TB CONTROL SOCIETY DIRECTORATE OF HEALTH SERVICES JAMMU RESIDENTIAL COACHING ACADEMY (RCA), A.M.U., ALIGARH NOTIFICATION & ADDENDUM The Residential Coaching Academy (RCA) has decided to hold its National Entrance Test on 15th July 2010 at four centres i.e. Aligarh (S.T.S. High School (18), A.M.U., Aligarh), Lucknow (Centennial Intermediate College (98), Golaganj, Lucknow), Srinagar (The University of Kashmir (101) Hazratbal, Srinagar) and Kozihkode (Farook College (89), Kozhikode). Those candidates who have given centre choice at Patna, Kolkata and Guwahati their centre shall be at Lucknow Hall Tickets will be posted by post and can also be downloaded from the website www.rcaamu.com. In the Advertisement of RCA, AMU, Aligarh for its First National Entrance Test for the admission to the Coaching for Civil Services/PCS (J) Examination to be held on 15th July 2010 at the Aligarh, Patna, Lucknow, Srinagar, Kolkatta, Guwahati, Kozhikode centers, wherein it was notified as "Free Coaching, Library & Hostel Facilities for Civil Services/PCS (J) (For Minorities /SCs/STs (upto 40% for Women)". Now it can be read as "No tuition fee will be charged; however, a nominal fee towards registration and charges for hostel accommodation and meals can be collected by the Academy" as per the directives of MHRD / UGC vide letter No. F.56-1-2009 (CU) dated 09.09.2009 at Item. No.7. Prof. Ziauddin Khairoowala, Director, Mob. No. 099270 57499; 0571-2701760.


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JULY 2010 ISSUE