Beneficiaries of Turmoil

The PDP Member of Parliament, Tariq Hamid Karra, has voiced strong resentment over the injustice meted out to Srinagar and Kashmir in comparison to Jammu. The facts are on his side. As per reports, out of a total of 8475 posts of contractual teachers, 5396 are for Jammu, 2960 for Kashmir, and 119 for Ladakh which has a population of just over 3 lakh.

And the worst is yet to come – while around 1300 posts have been advertised for the Jammu district, barely 80 have been advertised for Srinagar. Mr Karra is right in asking for the criteria for such skewed allocation.

No doubt, the onus lies on the National Conference which has allowed itself to be grossly manipulated by its ally in government, the Congress, as if it were not in a political coalition of equals but an arrangement of Lord and Serf, with the former bonded till eternity to serve the will of the latter.

And lo and behold! The state government has recently promoted 15 Chief Education Officers, and all but one are from Jammu. One Mushtaq Ahmad Salroo happens to be the only Muslim to figure in the open merit list.

Kashmir has been treated similarly with respect to plan allocation as well.

In the 2011-12 outlay, Srinagar got Rs 55.8 crore while Jammu walked away with Rs 99.8 crore.  Again in 2013-14, Srinagar got Rs 63.47 crore, while Jammu got a whopping Rs109. 47 crore. Naturally, resentment is simmering in Kashmir.

One is surprised at the paralytic attitude of the NC, a party that is giving away everything just to keep the Congress happy. In a recent cabinet meeting, it is reported to have given its nod to another disastrous decision. The Pukkadole Hydel Project, constructed by a sister concern of the NHPC, was not even on the meeting’s agenda. It arrived via a slip of paper, and in a twinkling of an eye, it was bestowed a tax holiday and exemption from water usage charges, and most stunningly, will not be required to give the state its 12 per cent of power royalty after 10 years. How could such a major decision have been taken without any discussion? Such irresponsible concessions speak volumes about the wreckage of our political set-up and its anti-people nature.

The state Irrigation Minister has made some noises about the commissioning of the 240 MW Uri-II by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on July 4. Taj Mohiuddin habitually makes useless noises for his petty interests. He just wants some Class-IV and menial jobs for Uri residents so that he can reap a harvest of votes in the upcoming Assembly elections. Soon after the power project was commissioned, the Sangh Parivar Government at the centre gave the happy news that the northern states and Delhi would have more electricity now. What about Kashmir itself, which suffers inordinately long power cuts, be it summer or winter?

It is surprising that even the K-CSDS did not make a mention of the Pukkadole Hydel Project. Moreover, K-CSDS has said that all hydel projects run under that the BOOT (Build, Operate, Own and Transfer) Agreement of 2000 are illegal and unconstitutional. The K-CSDS should have said that all these NHPC-owned projects are immoral too.

In Kashmir, everything is legitimate, even if it destroys people lives, environment or the meager chances of employment. The same is true about the undue and unjustified system of job reservations. For example, if Casteism has been grossly unjust to some sections of the people, why should the meager employment opportunities of Muslims be snatched away? The list of such injustices is too long to be repeated here.

The only reason that genuine and legitimate rights, opportunities and resources of the people of Kashmir are snatched away and bequeathed to others is that a culture of apathy has taken roots in our society. A callous and indifferent attitude in the name of the so-called Resistance Movement has been nurtured.

Clever and opportunistic sections do not suffer. There are too many beneficiaries of the turmoil in our society, spread across various walks of life. They now feign indifference, or even opposition, to garner more and more benefits. But at the state level, the beneficiaries of turmoil are actually feeding on the mass misery and induced mass indifference of the people of Kashmir.

The tragedy is that conscious sections of our society and Resistance Leaders are oblivious to this catastrophe.