(This is a reprint from NewsBred).
I woke up today to Omar Abdullah's tweet against Meghalaya governor Tathagata Roy who called for economic boycott of Kashmir and Kashmiris. Abdullah called Roy as "bigot" and asked: "Why don't you stop using our rivers to generate your electricity as well?"
Mr Abdullah doesn't know that if India doesn't use the state's rivers, the state would be flooded to the extent that his own palatial home would become a shikara. He also needs be reminded that Kashmir Valley gets almost 10 percent of entire subsidies that the Centre extends to rest of the states--this when Kashmir has only one percent of country's population. A Kashmiri gets 8 times more money than citizens of other states. So when everything has failed--talks, negotiations, appeasement, goodwill--perhaps an economic boycott of Valley, as mentioned by Roy, is worth pursuing.
It's also as good a time as any to remind Omar Abdullah, as well as Mehbooba Mufti, his Siamese twin, how such "humane" concern of theirs don't extend to two bigger and larger parts of the state, Jammu and Ladakh.
There is a crying need to trifurcate the state of Jammu and Kashmir into Jammu, Ladakh and Kashmir, tearing apart the 1954 Presidential decree that prohibits the reduction or increase in the present boundaries of the state.
Article 370 and 35A were introduced to protect the "cultural integrity" of the state, which has only meant that cultural tyranny of the Valley as against the largely Hindu and Buddhist ethos of Jammu and Ladakh, which are suffering under its yoke.
Jammu and Ladakh together have almost 85 percent of the state's area, compared to 15 percent of Kashmir but have no say in its affairs and have consistently suffered under the discriminatory practices of the state government, which is dominated by politicians of the Valley.
Despite its size, Jammu has only 37 assembly seats to Kashmir's 46 and Ladakh only 4 (with 24 seats designed for the area under the control of Pakistan and China). Even in Lok Sabha, Jammu has two seats compared to 3 in the Kashmir Valley with one belonging to Ladakh.
At the time of accession to India in 1947, Jammu province had six districts while Kashmir had just three districts: Srinagar, Anantnag and Baramulla. In 1975, Sheikh Abdullah of the National Conference created three additional districts of Kupwara, Pulwama (yes the same Pulwama) and Budgam in Kashmir. In 2007, Ghulab Nabi Azad of the Congress-led government in one stroke of pen, even when there was no demand for it within the Valley, increased the districts in Kashmir from 6 to 10.
This flew in the face of promise Congress had made on assembly election eve in 2002 to implement the Wazir Commission report of 1984, which had recommended 10 districts for Jammu and 7 for Kashmir.
Jammu has suffered not just on this count. Almost 90 percent of the gazette posts in Kashmir-controlled J & K Public Service Commission (JKPSC) is filled by Kashmiri Muslims: Jammu gets only crumbs of around 10 per cent of its share.
Around 2 lakh Hindu-Sikh refugees from Pakistan are in Jammu since their migration from Pakistan's adjoining Sialkot area in 1947. They don't have right to property, education, government jobs, bank loans or right to vote. They are Indian nationals but not citizens of the state. As for women, if anyone marries a non-permanent resident of the state, her husband and children are persona non grata in the state--in other words, refugees in the state.
All this has stemmed from the draconian definition of "permanent residents" under despicable 35A Article.
In the name of protecting the "cultural identity" of Jammu & Kashmir, all Article 35A has done is to obliterate the identity and aspirations of Jammu, and Ladakh, who want to integrate with the rest of India for their economic, social and political betterment.
Jammu is traumatized by the way the Rohingya Muslims are being infiltrated into their region in the name of human rights, backed by India's corrupt media and academia who suffer no such pangs when Kashmiri Pandits in lakhs were driven out of the Valley, refugees in their own land.