Jammu has a reason to feel discomfort for not having produced any leader of substance, except a very few, not numbering more than two to three, during the past seventy years, after the departure of Maharaja Hari Singh as last princely ruler of Jammu and Kashmir.
Jammu has all the more reason to be ashamed of producing a brigade of second-fiddlers, who brought deprivation, indignity and disrepute to the Duggarland instead.
How long will Jammu live with the stigma of producing second-fiddlers, who will proudly herd out tomorrow to join their Kashmiri masters in absentia for abusing their brave ancestors publicly and officially?
Time has perhaps come for Jammu to introspect, especially as the inheritors of self-respecting Dogra pride Pandit Premnath Dogra too finding comfort in bowing in raising their ‘tails’ before Kashmiri Aakas for few loaves of power.
Jammu has been ditched by second fiddlers, cutting across party lines. Cradle of power has been soothing than the honour of Dogras for them.
With all their pride bartered, let the Dogras avenge hurt inflicted to their pride by observing 13th July as anti Second-fiddlers Day. This will be a right message to all those remembering the so-called martyrs of 1931 and joining their masters in laying wreaths at the Khawaja Bazar Graveyard in Srinagar where the ‘victims’ of 13th July are buried or holding commemorative functions in the Maharaja’s Jammu.
The Kashmiri masters of the Jammu second-fiddlers generally lead the people to pay floral tributes to the martyrs, which they perceive, had been beginning of the struggle against, what they call, the autocratic rule of Dogras. Messages have already poured in from across the spectrum, paying tributes to the martyr’s, who they say, fought for the just cause of the people. However, nobody says whether it was a struggle of the people of Kashmir alone, or the people of both Jammu and Kashmir regions against the ‘autocratic rule’ of the Maharaja.
Of late, this day has assumed wider dimensions with the Kashmiri separatists remaining in the forefront to pay tributes to the martyrs, not only of 1931 but who have ‘sacrificed’ their lives till date for the so-called freedom struggle of Kashmir. For them the 1931 sacrifices were not against the autocratic rule or fighting for the people’s rule, say democracy, in Jammu and Kashmir but it was the beginning of the freedom movement for seeking ‘liberation from the clutches of foreign occupation’. How they perceive the martyr’s day is reflected from the theme being disseminated by the the All Party’s Hurriyat Conference, ‘Azad’ Kashmir, saying, “As many as 21 Kashmiris sacrificed their lives for the supreme cause of freedom for Kashmir from the foreign occupation on this particular day”. The same is the theme line of the APHC on this side of Kashmir as well.
The other side of this day has remained shrouded in mystery for over six decades because of the narratives offered by Kashmiri politicians and separatists. They keep eulogising the sacrifice of one Abdul Qadeer but who had pointed finger towards the Maharaja’s palace and raised slogans “destroy its every brick”. For some time now, the other side of the 13thJuly is getting further highlighted with Kashmiri Hindus (not just Kashmiri Pandits but Hindus belonging to Muzaffarabad, Punjab and Jammu as well) observing it as a Black Day. They believe 13thJuly 1931 as beginning of the first organised genocide of Kashmiri Pandits in Kashmir. Besides performing Tarpan at Akhnoor Ghat and observing Shradh in memory of those killed in 1931 July, the survivors and witnesses of the 1931 massacre keep narrating the horror tales of this day in village Kanikote in Budgam, Maharajganj and Vicharnag in Srinagar allegedly by a predominant political outfit.
These being the other dimensions of the day, isn’t it time for Dogras to make productive use of holiday on 13th July by observing this as Anti Second-fiddlers Day to isolate all those who have mortgaged Dogra pride to Kashmiri masters. Let a terse message go to all those who feel pride in playing into the hands of their Kashmiri masters, cutting cross political lines and ideological boundaries, and inflict bruises on Jammu psyche. Es Hamam Mein Sab Nange Hai or all the power hungry politicians of Jammu are sailing in the same boat. The latest entrants from the BJP have perhaps crossed all the limits, as they took pride in crawling before the PDP despite having been asked just to bow.
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© 2017 State Times Daily Newspaper