BY FIDA HUSSAIN SODAGAR
The local civic will be dead soon. A much glorified exercise in Kashmir will be over with nothing to serve. Elections in J&K have always been a matter of ego for India rather than a democratic course. The Municipal Elections also became the ingredient of this bandwagon. With bloodshed flourishing in the valley, they expected a miracle to install a decoration of local elections in the valley. Like in the past, they applied the same treatment again to silence the lost paradise, but the balloon of elections busted brutally. Elections are ok but using it a source of egoism deserves limitless shame and condemnation. The 95% in support of elections and 5% against theory by the Government always proves the reverse.
The anatomy of civic elections reveals a lot about their egoistic nature. The two bigger mainstream parties NC and PDP decided to boycott the elections. The boycott by these parties doesn’t make them saints which sacrificed power. They tried to score their own political points out of this drama. It has a bigger market with unlimited power and payback and is part of a bigger plan. They will use this boycott as cash crops, the benefits of which they will reap at the later stage at a bigger platform, the Assembly Elections. Even for own benefits, the boycott should have forced the Government to halt the election process.
The situation demanded committed efforts to resolve Kashmir; but they bombarded the valley with elections. It all reflects the ego of India. They want to execute elections whether people want it or not. Now the turnout in civic polls in Kashmir is more interesting. 8.5% turnout in first phase, 3% in second phase, 3.5% in third phase and no polling in number of wards at all, is what they call elections. What type of elections are these where polling stations look like the cities of dead, silent and ghostly? Internet cordon, choked roads, empty streets, and crowded security forces is what they call free, fair and transparent elections. This is the democratic process full of ego. These elections are unlearnt lessons by India. It is the gradual egoistic destruction of Peace in Kashmir at the highest level: my Ego, his ego, her ego, their ego, Kashmir have been rendered as a source of satisfying egos of everyone through elections.
The floodgate of elections in Kashmir has always proved as an exercise of futility in the valley. India always wanted to satisfy its ego by conducting the elections in Kashmir. The execution of elections as egoism is a process of self destruction. It has always accelerated and generated a deeper alienation among the people of Kashmir. Elections become irrelevant when people keep away from the electoral process. That is the tragedy of elections in Kashmir. The Panchayat Elections are on the way and the story will go on.
—The author holds a P.G in Mass Communication and Journalism and writes on various issues. He can be reached at : email@example.com