Views from Srinagar
Is there any example of a commission finally getting hold of the culprit.
G N Gauhar
IN THE third week of October,1947 the allied forces of India, the Army of the Patiala Ruler, landed in Srinagar. Immediately they- rather on their very arrival they caused bloodshed and massacre of innocent and sandwiched Kashmiris. With that inaugural blood bath we have witnessed almost daily mayhems. All that was being done at the behest of Nehru and his ‘friend’ in J&K-SM Abdullah; both had claim that they were defending Kashmir against the aggression. Under the mask of such claim the reign of the Sheikh was reign of terror. That blood bath was made in the areas closer to the capital City on South-West; the soldiers dragged peasants from their fields and without any reason or even sham pretext were torched to instant death. Dozens of peasants old, sick and infirm were forcibly dragged out from their houses and were mercilessly beaten.
Those included the then living saint Haji Subhan Mir of Padshahibagh who was guide of dozens of seekers of spiritual solace, including my father. That terror let lose was aimed to create wholesale fear psychosis particularly among the City people. It was further aimed that none even from his own colleagues, cadres, companions and masses dared to take risk of raising an objection to his unilateral decision of treachery with his nation; with his languishing comrades then in different jails for their only fault to have supported his futile adventure of Quit Kashmir Movement. It was with that aim that he agreed through Asif Ali from Jail to the suggestion of Nehru that his single release from jail be negotiated. So he was asked through same emissary to tender written unqualified apology to the Ruler for his sedition. It is thus that the self centered Sheikh did not commit treachery only with his nation but with his friends, colleagues, cadres and all his co-sufferers. It is thus that the rule of the Sheikh from the last week of October 1947 to 1953 was rule of jungle.
Bakhshi regime was refrain of the Sheikh’s terror and so a continuation of torture; However, he further imbibed corruption in the blood of cadres and infused the germ of that malignancy in the veins of the system. Irony lies in the course of history that the first ever commission under J&K Commission of Enquiries Act was appointed against him for charges of misuse of power through which he had created illegally huge assets; though originally was son of a poor family. The result of lengthy procedural wrangles adopted by Justice Ayyanger for few years was plus minus zero. However, Indra Ghandhi achieved her designed goal to tame Bakhshi’s adventurous postures and till death he remained most obedient servant of that ruling dynasty of India.
It was misdirection given to the most sacred and so far the most disciplined Holy Relic Agitation that the dynasty rule of Bakhshi was replaced by Qara dynasty and further that movement had added young Molvi M Farooq to the galaxy of local leadership. His popularity had broken those foolish barriers and divisions which Sher Bakra feuds had created; he was invited to deliver sermon from the pulpit of mosque of Sarai Bal,Amirakadal. The audience had packed even the corridors of the mosque and houses around, the faithful were keenly listening the sermon in disciplined and duly formed rows in the lane leading from Amira Kadal to the main door of the mosque. The congregation had no political color even remote. I was magistrate on duty posted in Palladium, my jurisdiction extended up to the bridge on Lal Chowk side, whereas my colleague Mr. Fazili was magistrate on that side, I was watching from my side and listening; the Molvi who while shedding tears was loudly begging mercy of the Almighty particularly for Kashmiries, the Muslims of the world and generally for whole of the mankind; audience collectively cried Ameen with raised folded hands towards the sky. Indian forces watching that humble prayer session turned berserk fired upon those disciplined rows of faithful sitting there and praying Ameen to the prayer syllables. Within few seconds the narrow Shoda Gali turned into pool of human blood and thus was thereafter christened as Shahid Gali; seventeen innocent people were killed. Sadiq government which had come into power by the miracle of that agitation appointed a commission of enquiry under the late Judge Aftab Anawar who promptly filed report attributing responsibility to a young army officer and his few jawans.
After the conclusion of that blood bath, Dhobi Mohala at Hazratbal was torched and many inhabitants were killed; Assistant Commissioner Srinagar was appointed Commission; did he ever file report if so where lies that buried in waste paper baskets?
Cupid pierced his arrows in two hearts of young couple working as sales man and sales girl in a Departmental Store and the two got tied in marriage bond. Parmeshri was daughter of a Hindu widow so was christened as Parveen Akhtar; all tests proved her in late twenties but Kashmiri Pundits, even progressives and pretenders of secular values within night collected all the ranks of their society and lodged an agitation. Even ruling Party and the ruling dynasty in New Delhi openly supported them.
Sadiq the known atheist was totally changed by such turn of history but was forced to appoint a commission headed by a retired CJI to enquire into imaginary discrimination against that community which had 5% share in population but at that time even had more than 33% share in civil services in the State and more than that number they had got berths in the Central Departments, prohibited for Kashmiri Muslims.
It is thus only the Gajendar Commission recommendations which were accepted and in the result another commission under retired CJI Mr. Sikri made some recommendations which did not disclose any discrimination against the microscopic minority community as there was none.
—Courtesy: Greater Kashmir.