Thus spake Rawat
Such statement doesn”t suit the chief of Armed Forces
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Dr. Abdul Majid Siraj
Srinagar, Publish Date: May 13 2018 11:33PM | Updated Date: May 13 2018 11:33PM
Thus spake Rawat
‘Azadi is not possible; you cannot fight us’, says Bipin Rawat the Chief of Armed Forces of India. The Chief of Army staff is an important constituent in the top policy making elite of governance in India. He can influence not only internal security policy but also foreign affairs policies and relations with outside countries in neighborhood and far away. His statement came as a threatening. Peace in Kashmir was shaken and even the tourists were alarmed. In the accelerating turmoil lacs of people run riot outside their homes, many hundreds of thousands wailing at funerals of those killed by forces, the frightful spectacle of many hundreds of properties blasted with whoever was inside including militants.
Rawat’s warning as the chief of the third largest army of the world was addressed to a handful of boys who have picked up arms demanding Azadi which in their language is meant to be right to self-determination. The war fought in the streets of Kashmir is an asymmetric civil war where the civil side has no matching power or equipment or manpower or military tactics or resources but they have dominance in armor of will, the message of defiance as citizens, the spirit of loyalty to their nation, the support of divinity and human values that impact the conscience of the world at large. That is why over the seven decades in this war the people side has never won at any single front yet they keep combating again and again and again in the full knowledge of the fate they will meet.
The local politicians cannot offer any hope of help. They find fault with each other and somehow try to cash in for a perk as crumbs of collaboration, here and there. Mr. Rawat makes a useful assertion that at least pause violence and give a political intercession attempt a chance because there are no military solutions to Kashmir problem therefore try political means. He is an important member of the top executive who can make that move.
Militants in Kashmir remain hidden from limelight and await political moves that affect the nation but they do not have initiative to go out there in combat point blank slogan of Azadi as driving force. Consider local mainstream drivers, a pause in violence cannot be achieved by making speeches to end bloodshed and making appeals to the centre in the background of 15 funeral prayers held same day, SMHS hospital inundated with 45 youth blinded with pellets and critical with bullets tearing through their lungs and heart, PhD professors and Engineers buried under 6 foot earth by their fathers. Ramadhan and Yatra truce will not make any impression on any violence without a substantial step that permeates across the society and ranks of Indian government. In those circumstances these are half-hearted vague attempts.
It is unfortunate that Mr. Rawat used the expression Azadi not deliberately hitting out at the concept of ‘freedom’ which is the back-bone of his own democracy and Mr. Rawat is a product of that Azadi himself. These cries of Azadi may also mean freedom from Pakistan or China if we consider seizure of territory then Mr. Rawat would have said ‘We will liberate you from Pakistan and China but never think you can defeat us.
There are three arms of governance, the Executive that is a product of legislature, Military and Judiciary. The two arms of governance have spoken on Kashmir but so far the Judiciary is silent on the main spine of Kashmir issue. A full bench deliberation must find a place in this situation when thousands of civilian and military lives are lost and Kashmir becomes hubris in foreign policy and the fiscal health of the nation. There must be ways when all voices that emanate in this conflict can be heard and evidence to facts brought to light and a thorough deliberation on legal platform thrashed out and a verdict pronounced. People on both sides of J&K would have to comply and if their arguments fail they had no recourse but to end the dispute and bloodshed forever.