Delhi is responsible for all what is happening in Kashmir’. Who denies and who can deny this fundamental fact of history. But this line reads like a signature tune to our resistance discourse. The tune is not a problem, but the repetition of the tune is. Geelani, Malik and Mirwaiz (in the front) and followed by others in the camp play it endlessly. Selectively too.
First things first. The line is true to the last word. Whatever has befallen Kashmir is because of Delhi. It’s not a mystic’s interpretation of the situation but a rude fact which even they don’t deny who feed on Delhi. But it has a downside to it. The way our leaders use it doesn’t capture the whole picture. It offers them an easy escape from all hard questions they themselves face. They duck under the Delhi cover and leave everything unanswered. Delhi being responsible never means we all are absolved from our responsibilities. The Joint Resistance Leadership can’t cover their faults by pointing to one big fault which our dispute is a consequence of. That is where blaming Delhi won’t do. Delhi doesn’t stop you from realising the dark future that awaits us. Aggressors make us wiser provided we know the way to guard ourselves.
Leadership is not about shifting blames or passing on accusations or issuing condemnations or paying tributes to the dead. Leadership is about understanding the truth with all its shades. It’s about seeking means of survival when the very survival is endangered. Leadership is not about generating fear about some distant things and being silent on the immediate dangers that knock at the door. Leadership is not about sermonizing life after death, but caring for life after birth. It doesn’t promise the supernatural by risking the natural.
`Delhi-is-responsible’ story can’t always be an all-in-one solution to our problems. Our pain is ours and the cure has to come from us. By bashing Delhi we are only losing our energy. Expecting mercy from a monster is illogical. It’s against the law of evolution, against the anatomy of power and against the very instinct of occupation. You can’t win by shaming or humbling the mighty. You can just reduce the opportunity for him to harm you. And that Delhi can’t do for you. When we exercise self-annihilation as our birthright who is going to keep us from this `noble’ job. Delhi can only watch us finish ourselves slowly. Survival is our responsibility. Leaders can’t always find a refuge in the politics of occupation which operates with the same grammar everywhere as it does in Kashmir.
Leaders are not gods who foreknow the things, but humans who foresee the shadow of things to come. Past is a lesson we use to secure our future, not a trap we fall into and spoil our present. Abusing the arsonist can’t save us from the fire we are caught in. We have to douse the flames. More we burn, graver will be the crime. The criminal no doubt is condemned but at whose cost?