Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Printable Version

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Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 01-26-2009

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>'Pak mobilising funds from Muslim nations for Kashmir'</b>
PTI | Patna
Union Minister of State for Home Shakeel Ahmed on Saturday accused Islamabad of seeking donations from Muslim countries to continue its armed campaign in Jammu and Kashmir.

<b>"Pakistan is seeking donations from 40-42 Muslim countries to continue its campaign in Jammu and Kashmir,</b> but their nefarious designs to create trouble through terrorist activities will not succeed in the State as was manifest in the large voter participation in the assembly election despite boycott calls by separatists," he said addressing a conference on terrorism organised by Nehru Yuva Kendra.

Referring to November 26 terror attack on Mumbai, Ahmed said, "The attacks were not only an onslaught on our security but a challenge to our nation's pride. We would unitedly defeat the challenge," Ahmed said.

"India views with deep concern the use of Pakistani territory to launch terror strikes against us....No country can tolerate such blatant violation of its security," he said adding "Pakistan is indulging in such acts to destroy the communal harmony in India."
Moron Singh should also contribute to this fund, sometimes speedy death is better than prolonged suffering.

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 02-03-2009

<b>Hurriyat feels recession heat, lays off staff</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Srinagar It seems the global economic meltdown has not even spared the Hurriyat Conference (HC) which said the amalgam has wound up all its district offices and slashed funds to its 26 general council constituents by 50 per cent.
"The financial recession is a world wide phenomenon and its effects are inevitable. We have closed down district offices and reduced staff strength as a measure of reforms," Hurriyat sources said.

Even the kitchen at the central office has been closed in view of financial crunch being faced by the HC, they said.

The separatist conglomerate faced a humiliating situation as the people almost ignored its call for boycott of the recently held assembly polls in J&K.
Low oil price is really hurting them or FOSA, FOIL, IMC, Roys, CHatterjees funders are short of cash because of loss of job in US?

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 02-20-2009

There was moderate Earth quake in POK region.

Here are comments from rediff. Enjoy it. <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->

J&K deserves it
by Mehfil on Feb 20, 2009 11:55 AM  Permalink  | Hide replies

More natural calamities on a bigger scale with maximum destruction is needed in J&K to bring the separatists to their senses.
Good news in Rediff after a long time.
by kundiyilkunna on Feb 20, 2009 11:53 AM  Permalink  | Hide replies

Swat may be the epicentre am sure

by Lotan Potan on Feb 20, 2009 11:51 AM  Permalink  | Hide replies



by Lotan Potan on Feb 20, 2009 11:53 AM  Permalink


J&K Quake
by darna kyon on Feb 20, 2009 11:49 AM  Permalink  | Hide replies

It is a very long time since there have been news of J&K.Now quake has started it.Was it the handiwork of Pakistan as our politicians will say or Taliban?

Has Taliban done an underground nuclear test ?
by prosperousindia on Feb 20, 2009 11:29 AM  Permalink  | Hide replies

Has Taliban done an underground nuclear test at Indo-Pak border?

by Umesh Sharma on Feb 20, 2009 11:21 AM  Permalink  | Hide replies

hope this is not due to taliban taking over swat, r we expecting worse?
by Nitin Hiran on Feb 20, 2009 11:35 AM  Permalink
Hope the worse goes towards pak.This guys might be adjusting the topography of the Himalayas after the sick taliban support.

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Husky - 03-01-2009

Christogovt tried to do what christianism wanted:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>kkkangress almost gave away kashmir in 2007</b>
feb 28th, 2009

the relevant portion:

"Under the plan, the Kashmir conflict would have been resolved through the creation of an autonomous region in which local residents could move freely and conduct trade on both sides of the territorial boundary. Over time, the border would become irrelevant, and declining violence would allow a gradual withdrawal of tens of thousands of troops that now face one another across the region's mountain passes."

in other words, taliban would be free to move into jammu and kashmir, and then fan out into the rest of india as "kashmiris". "kashmiri emporia" would blossom everywhere, much like the "churches" being planted everywhere. indian troops would move out of j&k, and pakistani troops woud move in. lo and behold, pakistan gets everything it wanted, and india would be left holding the can again.

amazing that the kkkangress did not manage to ramrod it through. that fat bengali communist speaker would have bullied everyone in parliament who opposed it, screaming "off with his head" and citing them for "contempt of fat-bengali-communist-speaker".

Posted by nizhal yoddha at 2/28/2009 04:56:00 PM 0 comments<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 03-25-2009

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Kupwara gunbattle ends, 17 militants killed</b>
PTI | Srinagar
Six more militants were killed on Tuesday taking the death toll in the fierce gunbattle between militants and security forces in Jammu and Kashmir's Kupwara district to 25 as the five-day-long stand-off ended this evening.

Seventeen militants and <b>eight Army personnel, including a Major, were killed in the encounter</b> which began on March 20 on higher reaches of the Shamsabari range in Harfada forest, a defence spokesman said.

Four soldiers and five militants were killed on Monday while an ultra died a day before. On Saturday, four troops, including Major Mohit Sharma, and two insurgents, were killed.

On the first day, three militants were mowed down by the security forces. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Husky - 04-11-2009

Related to the above.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Pak Making Moves on J&K</b>
<b>Army commandos take on Taliban in J&K</b>
<!--QuoteBegin--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->  Infiltrators from Pakistan are making one of the most organised and concerted bids since the Kargil war to cross the LoC and enter Jammu & Kashmir.

    The army is locked in encounters with heavily armed infiltrators at eight locations along the LoC. As many as 400 militants are reportedly waiting to cross over from Pakistan and target the Lok Sabha elections.

    Intense gunbattles are on in Uri, Baramulla, Kupwara, Lolab, Kangan, Wusan, Hafruda forests and Gurez. Sources said that 20 to 40 militants may have managed to sneak in.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->(Mudy's post above is on how the Kupwara battle ended.
Poor Indian armed forces.
Christoislamic terrorism 'militancy' is like a bug infestation. There's no point neutralising a few bugs: others will keep appearing. *All* of christoislamism itself ought to be neutralised, else this will never end.)

It looks like Pak is planning another stunt to create conditions where it can divert its troops away from fighting Taliban and bring them back to the border with India, on the pretext of "Indian aggression" at the border.

With the backlash from the Mumbai attacks still fresh in its memory, Pak won't be looking to immediately repeat another similar incident back-to-back. So now they'll try something different, and J&K then presents itself as another useful opportunity.

They'll now try their hand at infiltrating J&K, and orchestrating a deepening escalation of military conflict there. They can then hope for this to culminate in an Indo-Pak border clash which will give Pak the excuse it needs to pull its troops back from the War on Terror.

Whenever Pak feels too much pain from the US-imposed War on Terror, then it needs to seek relief by creating a diversion so that it can withdraw its troops from the fray. We Indians then become Pak's target of convenience whenever it faces any difficulties with the Americans. The more desperate Pak becomes, the more Indians will become their targets.
Posted by san at 4/09/2009 09:20:00 AM 0 comments<!--QuoteEnd--></div><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Naresh - 07-25-2009

<b>PoK leaders seek India’s help in fight against Pak</b>

<b>WHILE India has been extremely sensitive about being seen to be getting involved in Pakistan’s internal affairs, a number of political groups in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) have now been openly seeking New Delhi’s help in their fight against what they describe as their persecution by Islamabad.</b>

Their argument is simple. Officially, India continues to consider the whole of Kashmir, including the areas under Pakistan control, as its own territory and therefore it becomes its duty to protect them against a foreign aggressor, which is how they describe Pakistan.

<b>A motley group of these political leaders and intellectuals from areas around Gilgit and Baltistan in PoK, referred to as Northern Areas by Pakistan, assembled in New Delhi to participate in a two-day international seminar on ‘Society, Culture and Politics in the Karakoram Himalayas’ that was dominated by tales of discrimination and persecution of the people in these areas at the hands of Pakistan’s civilian and military establishment.</b>

Cheers <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 07-29-2009

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Omar resigns, Governor asks him to continue</b>
On a day of high drama, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Tuesday tendered his resignation to Governor N N Vohra asking him to go into a senior <b>PDP leader's allegation of his involvement in the 2006 sex scandal</b> and accept it if he was guilty.

The Governor is reported to have observed that he would be able to consider Omar's resignation only after being fully informed about the details of the allegation against him and verifying its basis.

The Governor has asked Omar to continue to discharge his responsibilities as Chief Minister till a final decision is taken, a Raj Bhavan spokesperson said in a statement<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
PDP is back creating confusion.
First their target was Indian Government. They keep hands off.
Next was Kashmiri Pandit. They were kicked out of valley.
Now they have to fight with each other, basically they can't live with each other.

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - shamu - 08-02-2009

Why should Omar submit resignation if that was just a false accusation? I would expect him to fight false accusations, just like Modi did. By this resignation drama, it becomes suspicious that there is something behind the smoke. Whether the accusation gets proved or not is another matter.

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 09-15-2009

<b>Pakistan merging Northern Areas</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Sandhya Jain

<b>In an act of brazenness aimed at formally integrating Jammu & Kashmir’s Northern Areas into the Islamic Republic, Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani on August 29, 2009 unveiled a plan to replace the existing Northern Areas Legislative Council with a Gilgit-Baltistan Legislative Assembly, a Governor, and a Chief Minister with a six-member Council of Ministers.

The ‘Gilgit-Baltistan Empowerment and Self-Governance Order, 2009’, which India has strongly protested, was approved by President Asif Ali Zardari on September 8, 2009.</b> It is accompanied by a move to construct the 7,000 MW Bunji Hydroelectric Project in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, with China’s assistance, secured during Mr Zardari’s visit to Beijing last month. It may be recalled that it is from the Northern Areas that Pakistan gifted 5,000 sq km of Indian territory to China, which facilitates its occupation of Tibet.

The Northern Areas are strategically important for their proximity to Afghanistan and China. Pakistan, on occupying them in 1947, isolated them from the rest of ‘Azad Kashmir’ and treated Gilgit, Baltistan, Hunza and Nagar as a separate administrative unit. The proposed Gilgit-Baltistan Legislative Assembly will have 24 elected members, who in turn will elect six women and three technocrat members, taking the total strength to 33 members. The Assembly will elect a Chief Minister, but the right to select the Cabinet will be vested in the Governor. Thus, the Governor, to be appointed by the President of Pakistan for an indefinite period, will replace the Chief Executive.

The Governor must have a minimum age of 35 years, and be qualified to be a member of the Pakistan National Assembly. This suggests that the Governor of Gilgit-Baltistan will be from Pakistan, like the Chief Secretary, Finance Secretary and Inspector-General of Police in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. The current Kashmir & Northern Affairs Minister, Mr Qamaruzzaman Kaira, is to take over as Governor.

The proposed new system will confer the Northern Areas with a province-like status. It will have a ‘supreme appellate court’ headed by a chief judge, a public service commission, a chief election commissioner, and an auditor-general. So far, the people of Gilgit-Baltistan do not have official Pakistani citizenship.

<b>Indian Kashmiri leaders oppose the package on the ground that it undermines the ‘disputed’ status of Jammu & Kashmir by formalising the status quo by trying to turn Gilgit-Baltistan into a virtual province of Pakistan. This is a marked departure from Islamabad’s stated position of supporting the struggle for self-determination for the people of Jammu & Kashmir</b>.

<b>Mr Yasin Malik of the Jammu & Kashmir Liberation Front, who was visiting Pakistan when the decision was announced, called it “an arrow that has been shot into the hearts of Kashmiris” by Pakistan</b>. It betrayed Mr Yousuf Gilani’s promise to consult all stakeholders before taking any decision. The move was also denounced by Mr Amanullah Khan, leader of a faction of the JKLF, who said Pakistan’s “wavering stand” on Kashmir had already cost it the support of the Security Council;<b> Islamabad was now squandering residual goodwill by “merging” Gilgit-Baltistan with Pakistan.</b>

Merger fears are reinforced by the Pakistan People’s Party Gilgit-Baltistan president Syed Mehdi Shah demanding the formation of a Gilgit-Baltistan Council, to be headed by the Prime Minister. Mr Zardari has also ordered beginning the Gilgit-Skardu road project, and setting up regional branches of the National Bank of Pakistan, National Database and Registration Authority, and the House Building Finance Corporation. Pakistan-occupied Kashmir is unhappy with this move. Even the Jamaat-e-Islami, which favours Kashmir merging with Pakistan, joined the protests, explaining that it opposes piece-meal solution to the ‘Kashmir issue’.

However, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, chairman of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference, said the new political-administrative package announced by the Pakistan Government met the longstanding demands of the people of these areas and denied it would have a negative impact on the ‘Kashmir cause’. But Syed Salahuddin, chairman of the United Jihad Council, opined that since the political status of the State is still unresolved, any change of status would have a “negative impact”.

Problems on the Indian side of the Line of Control are hardly less invidious. Recently, the Jammu & Kashmir legislature passed a resolution for a Chenab Hill Council which involves a de facto division of Jammu into Muslim and Hindu areas, on the pretext of ‘plains’ and ‘hill areas’. The proposal to have plains and hill areas hill councils was mooted by Chief Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah when invited to speak at the Working Group of Centre State Relations on Jammu & Kashmir.

Panun Kashmir chairman Ajay Chrungoo took strong exception to Mr Habibullah’s formula for separate councils for Jammu plains and hill areas, claiming it would divide Jammu region on communal lines. Mr. Chrungoo pointed out that in April 2005, Mr Habibullah had mooted Regional Assemblies for the State on communal lines, and now he was proposing separate councils.

Mr Chrungoo said this was nothing more than a reworking of Gen Pervez Musharraf’s plan for seven autonomous regions for the State — two for Jammu (Muslim mountains, Hindu plains), two for Ladakh (Shia Kargil, Buddhist Ladakh), one for the Kashmir Valley to retain Muslim domination though the Valley also has hill and plains areas; and finally, Mirpur and Muzaffarabad in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. Mr Habibullah’s ‘Kashmir formula’ drew the ire of many parties, who demanded other ‘experts’ be invited to the working group if the Chief Information Commissioner was called as an ‘expert’ on the State.

The BJP demanded Provincial Councils for Ladakh and Jammu regions, with adequate financial, administrative and legislature powers to redress the sustained neglect of these areas.<b> It demanded scrapping of Article 370 as it had led the State from separate status to separatism. The BJP contested the National Conference proposal for autonomy and the PDP’s for self-rule, saying both were akin to pre-1953 status and thus unacceptable. It urged rehabilitating the Valley’s displaced Hindus.
The Panthers Party emphasised the discrimination faced by Jammu region, which is larger and has more voters than Kashmir, but has been accorded less Parliament and Assembly seats than Kashmir. The Valley is favoured in terms of road connectivity, employment, electricity production and treatment for migrants. It urged State subject rights to 1947 refugees, permanent settlement of the problems of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir refugees, and allotment of one-third Assembly seats reserved for Pakistan-occupied Kashmir to refugees living in the State. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

India should do same but this is expecting too much from appointed PM of India.

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 09-30-2009

<b>Farmer's daughter disarms terrorist and shoots him dead with AK47</b>
An Indian farmer’s daughter disarmed a terrorist leader who broke into her home, attacked him with an axe and shot him dead with his own gun.<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->When they forced their way into Miss Kausar’s home, her father Noor Mohammad refused their demands and was attacked.

His daughter was hiding under a bed when she heard him crying as the gunmen thrashed him with sticks. According to police, she ran towards her father’s attacker and struck him with an axe. As he collapsed, she snatched his AK47 and shot him dead.

She also shot and wounded another militant as he made his escape.
Police have hailed the woman’s bravery.

They said she would be nominated for the president’s gallantry award.
She may also receive a £4,000 reward if, as police believe, the dead terrorist is confirmed as Uzafa Shah, a wanted Pakistani LeT commander who had been active in the area for the past four years.

Supt Shafqat Watali said Miss Kausar’s reaction was “a rude shock” for the militants. “Normally they get king-like treatment but this was totally unexpected,” he said.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--emo&:cool--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/specool.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='specool.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Brave act

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 10-07-2009

<b>Two militants killed by Army, encounter still on</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Two militants were killed in an encounter with security forces in Kupwara district of north Kashmir on Wednesday morning.
Acting on a tip off, police assisted by army cordoned off Satkoji near Zachaldara, 80 kms from Srinagar, and a police spokesman said.

The militants hiding in the area opened fire on the joint search party and in the ensuing encounter two militants were killed.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 10-29-2009

<b>Three militants killed in Jammu</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->At least three militants were killed in a gun battle with security forces in Mendhar area of Poonch district in Jammu early on Thursday morning, army officials said.

Acting on a tip off, security forces raided a militant hideout in Talwa area of Mendhar, about 200 km northwest of Jammu. Three militants were killed in the shoot out that followed<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 10-29-2009

<b>Govt withdraws some Kashmir troops in peace gesture</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->India is withdrawing about 15,000 soldiers from Jammu and Kashmir, a military official said on Thursday, in a move aimed at boosting prospects of peace talks with the region's separatist groups.

India has been under international pressure in recent months to reduce tensions along its Pakistan border particularly Kashmir so that Islamabad could focus on fighting the Taliban on its western border with Afghanistan<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - G.Subramaniam - 11-03-2009

Bear kills two Hizbul infiltrators in cave
M Saleem Pandit, TNN 3 November 2009, 12:59am IST
Print Email Discuss Bookmark/Share Save Comment Text Size: |
SRINAGAR: It seems these are the worst of times to be a militant in Kashmir. First, a Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist was axed to death by a teenage
girl in Rajouri roughly a month ago. Now, a bear has mauled two Hizbul Mujahideen militants to death as they hid in its cave in Shopian, South Kashmir.

According to defence spokesman Lt Col J S Brar, the two commanders dared to colonise a bear's cave at Darwal Nar in Pir Panjal in Shopian and paid for it with their lives. For, late on Sunday night, as the two slept, the bear came calling.

"It attacked the armed militants and killed them on the spot," Brar said.

It was only on Monday morning that an Army patrol party saw two bodies inside the cave and, on frisking through their clothes, found that they were Hizbul Mujahideen commanders.

Medical examinations revealed that the two were mauled to death by a bear. The two were identified as Kaisar Ahmad and Saifullah, both residents of Kashmir, the spokesman said.

‘‘Two Ak 47 rifles and some ammunition were recovered from the spot,’’ he added.This is the first known instance in last 20 years of insurgency in J&K of a wild animal attacking and killing militants, who have their hideouts mostly in dense forests or on mountain ranges.

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Husky - 11-15-2009
<b>‘J&K editor was among top strategic sources of ISI’</b>
26/10/2009 15:03:37 Mohit Kandhari | Jammu - Daily Pioneer

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 11-16-2009

<b>Independence of Kashmir is unworkable & unthinkable.</b>

<img src='' border='0' alt='user posted image' />

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 11-18-2009

<b>US in touch with Hurriyat on Kashmir issue</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The US might be denying direct mediation in Kashmir, but it has opened diplomatic channels with the All Party Hurriyat Conference headed by Mirwaiz Umar Farooq to resolve the issue.

“The US is eager to resolve the issue once and for all. They are again showing interest in Kashmir,” the Mirwaiz told HT.

Top US State Department officials got in touch with him when he was in New York in September for a meeting of the Organization of Islamic Countries, a fact confirmed by the Mirwaiz. The officials work in association with Richard Holbrooke, the US’s special representative to Afghanistan-Pakistan.

The Mirwaiz, accompanied by senior Hurriyat leader Abdul Ghani Bhatt, is understood to have already held two rounds of talks with Home Minister P. Chidambaram, as part of the home ministry’s “quiet diplomacy” initiative.

Without naming anyone, the Hurriyat chief said the seriousness on part of the US could be gauged from the fact that it had identified individuals to study the issue within “new global realities”.

<b>The Obama administration is under pressure from Pakistan to deliver on Kashmir to see a progress on the Afghan front.</b>

It has linked Afghanistan success to peace in Kashmir, something that India completely disagrees with.

<b>It’s learnt that the Obama administration has asked renowned security expert Stephen Cohen to study the Kashmir issue. He has already presented a paper on the conflict and the peace process.

In the past, India had objected to the US decision to appoint a former president, Bill Clinton, as point man on Kashmir.</b>

It’s widely held in the US and Pakistan that to contain extremist forces and Taliban in the areas along Afghanistan, the US is keen to resolve the Kashmir issue.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - Guest - 11-18-2009

<b>Jammu: Top BSF officer killed in terrorist ambush</b>

Jammu And Kashmir - 2 - dhu - 12-22-2009

[url=""]UPA vacillates on J&K policy[/url]

Sandhya Jain

Quote:Union Defence Minister AK Antony’s decision to withdraw 30,000 troops from Jammu & Kashmir on grounds of an alleged improvement in law and order is fraught with risk and reflects dangerous vacillation regarding this critical border State. The announcement coincides with renewed unrest over the report of the CBI’s inquiry into the Shopian case, where two women alleged to have been raped and murdered on May 30 were found to have died by drowning in a stream. The situation had become volatile with the People’s Democratic Party and separatist groups alleging foul play and triggering a 47-day shutdown of the district, forcing the Chief Minister to set up a one-man inquiry commission.

Unfortunately, the commission confirmed rape and murder and claimed that four police officers were involved in destroying crucial evidence. The accused were arrested, but when matters did not improve, the CBI was asked to investigate in September. The CBI’s findings have corroborated Mr Omar Abdullah’s first statement that the women had died by drowning. The CBI has now filed a charge-sheet against six doctors, five lawyers and two witnesses for making false claims. Previous exhumation of the bodies had revealed that the unmarried girl was not raped.

As the court has yet to assess the CBI’s report, and habitual dissidents are trying to stoke sentiments afresh, this was probably not the best moment to reduce troop levels. Reduction was also avoidable because the Chief Minister had, while dedicating a war memorial, Balidan Sthambh, to the nation on November 25, admitted the continued need for the armed forces to provide stability to the State.

With terrorism a continuing threat, and reports that over 800 dreaded terrorists have successfully entered the State, and increasing incidents on the Line of Control, troop reduction is inexplicable. Even as a cosmetic exercise for diplomatic mileage, the decision has caused dismay among Hindus and other minority groups. There is also a basic contradiction in the Defence Minister asserting that the Armed Forces Special Powers Act would remain in force until the situation improved (which is hardly likely).

There is profound unease over the reasons and objectives behind the Government’s decision to engage in secret talks with various separatist groups in Jammu & Kashmir. Why should a democratic country, with elected Governments at the Centre and in the State, which has conducted working group meetings with all parties at the initiative of the Prime Minister, need secret talks at all? What is the content of these talks? What are the areas of accord and discord? And, why has the process triggered discontent among separatist groups like the All-Party Hurriyat Conference?

New Delhi’s secrecy is reminiscent of the British Raj’s backroom parleys with the Muslim League prior to partition, in that the Centre is behaving like a ‘neutral’ arbitrator between nationalist and anti-national forces in the State, rather than as the legitimate wielder of national sovereignty. Instead of stoutly defending the nation’s territorial integrity, the Government of India itself appears to be tilting towards the separatist forces. There is no response to pointed questions whether the Centre envisions a further partition of the nation and the loss of critical strategic territory to hostile forces.

For reasons best known to it and a small coterie of like-minded persons, the Manmohan Singh regime repeatedly asserts that it is committed to finding a settlement between what are called ‘stake holders’ in the so-called Jammu & Kashmir ‘dispute.’ Invisible actors determining the content and character of the ‘quiet dialogue’ started by the Government are thus perverting the post-1947 national consensus on the indivisible unity of India with Jammu & Kashmir as its integral part.

As there has been no national debate, much less a referendum, on whether the unanimous parliamentary resolution reclaiming the whole of Jammu & Kashmir as it existed on August 15, 1947 can be cast aside, the Centre would do well to seek national opinion on this sensitive issue.

Mr Omar Abdullah actively supports this so-called dialogue, which lends strength to the suspicion that he may be furthering his grandfather’s dream of an independent Muslim nation of Kashmir. It is, therefore, imperative that the Centre tell us if peace and reconciliation means surrender to Muslim communal separatism. In that case, what about the legitimate concerns and aspirations of the State’s Hindu, Sikh, and Buddhist communities, who constitute over 40 per cent of the population?

After over six decades of freedom, and several party combinations at the Centre, ordinary citizens are at a loss to understand how and why the Government of India has agreed — and under whose pressure — to treat Jammu & Kashmir as an extra-national concern. It is pertinent that after the fiasco in the UN Security Council in the late-1940s, New Delhi initiated a consensus that lasted decades, which asserted that Jammu & Kashmir was an inalienable part of India.

So, what considerations have compelled South Block to change course, determine an arbitrary set of ‘stake-holders’, and discuss the future of the State with them? One cannot help but notice that New Delhi’s change in policy is co-terminus with coalition Government at the Centre. Each Government at the Centre has been fully aware that the Muslim separatist leaders with whom they are carrying on secret parleys do not represent Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhists of Jammu & Kashmir, or even all the Muslims of the State.

Yet the Government is perpetuating the post-1947 era errors by de facto accepting Jammu & Kashmir as a separate sphere of Muslim interest in India. By promoting the sentiment of exclusion of the State from the secular polity of the country by accepting vague proposals for ‘greater autonomy’, ‘self rule’, or the ‘Musharraf Plan’, New Delhi will be opening the door to an irreversible balkanisation of India. The formal creation of a Muslim State on Indian soil (as opposed to the existence of a Muslim-majority State within the country) can only rupture India’s unity.

The horrific sufferings of the Hindus of Kashmir over centuries, and particularly since independence and the forced exodus of 1989-90, do not need reiteration here. Hence, if there is to be any internal reorganisation of Jammu & Kashmir, it should consider the Hindu and Buddhist demands for a separate Union Territory of Ladakh, a separate Jammu State, and a Union Territory of Panun Kashmir north and east of Jhelum.