The turquoise shimmering waters ,snow capped mountains ,dense forests and glorious flora and fauna of Kashmir –– the Paradise lost to Kashmiri Pandits, who were victims of ethnic cleansing from the valley by the Pakistani terrorists aided and abetted by pro Pakistani elements within the valley ,killing more than thousand of innocent Pandits way back in Dec 1989 and early 1990.
The phenomenon is repugnant of grave atrocities inflicting gruesome violence upon the women, thereby bruising and hurting the pride of the community .
The Kashmiri Pandits were left with no option than to flee the valley to become refugees in their own country.
In Jammu ,the Pandits were not welcome .
The locals feared that being upright and intelligent community ,they would usurp the jobs especially government ones of the locals.
When some migrant medical students ,numbering around85 , were re-admitted in the Jammu Medical college ,the locals grouped together and went on a flash strike supported by BJP. The strike lasted for two weeks.
The BJP local leaders declared that Kashmiri Pandits could live in Jammu as “Guests” only and issued a warning to the then Union Home Minister Mufti Sayeed and the Governor Mr G.C Saxena against the further influx of Kashmiri Pandits into Jammu.
Majority of Kashmiri pandits eventually settled in all Indian states .
However Maharashtra ,Karnataka were two states to welcome Kashmiri pandits offering admissions in professional colleges and with basic facilities for resettlement.
Delhi and other adjoining states followed the suite to receive and provide means to settle Pandits in large numbers.
Now after nearly 30 years of wilderness ,majority of Pandits believe that their birthland ,Kashmir, a paradise , is lost for ever.
The National Political Parties are playing blame game and not paying any heed to the question of rehabilitation of Pandits in the valley.
The Parties like National Conference and PDP are in doldrums for their vacillating policy on the Kashmir impasse.
The move to boycott the Urban and Panchayat polls by both PDP and National Conference is defeat for both ,the centre and the main regional parties ,as the ultimate goal lies in fostering better relationship between Srinagar and New Delhi.
In absence of the main leaders ,Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti ,the centre hopes that new leaders may emerge from the grass roots to challenge the hegemony of these leaders.
A large number of Kashmiri Pandits in sheer desperation ,bitterness , and harbouring a feeling of being left out by the Congress in the hour of distress, inched towards BJP.
Reposing faith in the rheotrics of Prime Minister Narender Modi who addressed a rally in Samba in December 2014,pledging to the settlement of Pandits in the valley.
There afterwards Prime Minister Narender Modiji and his entourage Mr Amit Shah
maintained a stoic silence on the issue todate.
Consequently Pandits feel cheated and have no recourse to give vent to their feelings.
By now it must be clear to all that going back on the promises pledges made as hardly surprising.
The Pandits do not count a vote bank for any Political Party as such. The number is so minuscule to attract any attention.
The question of rehabilitation was an easy trap to wean away Pandits from the strong fold of Congress.
It is foregone conclusion that BJP is going to use the same rhetoric for Pandits in the 2019 elections. as well.
The exodus Pandit Card is being used by the Central Govt to browbeat Pakistan in International forums like UN ,SAARC, Etc. and nothing else.
Much water has flown under the seven Jhelum bridges since 1989/90.
Apparently under the prevailing circumtances the situation is not conducive for the Pandits to go back to the valley.
All of us know that the situation is worse than what was in 1990.
The youth of Kashmir being radicalized by the masterminds of terrorism in Pakistan is posing a grave threat to the peace in the valley. The policy of repression followed by the Govt of India may have added more fuel to the rise of violence and need concrete strategy to douse the fire of vengeance.
The lives of even reticent peace loving Kashmiri Muslim are miserable who otherwise are eager to seek peace and tranquility . They need to muster courage to stand up against the militants and help the Central authorities to thwart the acts of violence.
Due to lack of definite policy,strategy The militants across the border have been killing both Army and the J&K police personnel in large numbers every day.
The recent gruesome killing of Policemen, Nissar Ahmad, and SPOs Firdous Ahmad, and Kulwant singh in Batagund and adjoining areas of Shopian
has shaken the 1.2 lakh strong contingent of Jammu and Kashmir police force, with six SPOs announcing their resignations on social media.
The abrogation of Article 370 may prompt Kashmiri Pandits to move to the valley for good.
But who has the courage and determination to do it.
The BJP, being in opposition hollered from the roof tops for doing away with the Article 370 ,but now in power for more than 4 years lacks the lion’s courage to implement it.
The muscular military policy persuaded by the Centre has yielded no positive results so far .
The truth stands only reconciliation on give and take basis between New Delhi and Srinagar can cement the relations permanently.
The wait for permanent settlement of Kashmiri Pandits seems long one, as very few acknowledge the pain suffered by them.