Trifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir an unwise and dangerous move

In a nation state the national interest is always given precedence over everything else. It is national interest which decides every move and policy decision of the government of a nation state. National interest always involves the good of the people and the country, especially in a democracy. Anything which acts as, or erects, road blocks towards achieving national interests is given up and every other thing promoting national interest is given utmost priority and included in the policy decisions of the government. Thence, all the government agencies are involved to implement the decisions.

Unfortunately in many democracies of the world political parties fiddle with this fundamental of governance. In most of the democracies political parties go to the extent of making the national interests subordinate to the party interests and the interests of the ruling elite. In the post truth era the party interests are sold in the envelopes which normally carry the national interests. Thereby, a dangerous precedence has been set where it is party at the beginning and party at the end which is the centre of policy making and their implementation. National interests are shaped and reshaped to suit the party interests. India is no exception to this rule.

In the Indian context, Jammu and Kashmir State is somehow a hurdle in the path of achieving the national interest. In fact, it is the issue where different parties hold different views and positions towards the future of the state. Each party claims to be the only real representative of the people and consistently try to disprove such claims of the other parties. Irresolution of this issue drains huge proportion of human and other resources which could have been otherwise used for the development and modernization of the country, and the people of the country. Indian State, as such is expected to take a lead towards finding a lasting solution to the problem.

Towards this end there are some party and people who suggest the trifurcation of the state into three union territories. Even a news items is circulating in media where it is stated that Prime Minister Modi is keen to resolve the Kashmir issue before 2019 Parliamentary elections and the solution, as per the report, is the trifurcation of the state. According to the same report, it is claimed that Prime Minister might announce the trifurcation of the state very soon.

In the age of conflicting news, and fake news, believing anything that is circulated in the media is hard to do. At times what is stated prove misrepresentations and fake but if a news item is being circulated, it needs to be verified and analyzed, in case report is proven as true. Proving the veracity of the new items is up to the concerned media houses and government agencies, what we can do here is to at least have a cursory look at the repercussions of the division plan.

Jammu and Kashmir certainly needs a resolution, and if Prime Minister Modi is eager to find out a solution to the problem, he needs to be appreciated. But, if the solution that he has thought of is trifurcation of the state, it is a dangerous ploy which can hurt the national interests of the country. At the face of it the proposed decision seems another ploy by the Bhartiya Janta Party to win the Parliamentary elections of 2019. Such decisions, in a democracy, cannot be made without taking the people of the state into confidence and without thoroughly analyzing the repercussions and consequences of the decision.

Jammu and Kashmir is a diverse state geographically and demographically, it is not limited to Muslim majority Kashmir, Hindu majority Jammu and Buddhist majority Ladakh. There are intra-region diversities which need to be respected. Moreover, if by division of the state Jammu and Ladakh Divisions might come closer to India but there is every chance that Kashmir Division and the people of Kashmir will feel more alienated and discriminated by this decision. Plus, many people in Jammu and Ladakh divisions are bound to oppose the decision. There is also the question of minorities in Kashmir which can’t be left unaddressed.

Hence, the decision if it is thought of anywhere in the power corridors of the country should be relooked and shunned. The government should not tread the beaten path of others. What British did in 1905 by partitioning Bengal it should not be repeated in the post independence Indian by partitioning, or proposing partition of, Jammu and Kashmir. Big decisions are not made with a bang always; they are not made by partitioning countries and states. Rather the biggest of the decisions can be made silently and taking each party into confidence.

Prime Minister of India can create a bang by announcing the partitions of Jammu and Kashmir, but who would be responsible for the repercussions and consequences? Who would be responsible if the integrating forces of the country feel stressed and strained by this decision? Party interests should not make the power elites blind to the needs of the national interest. Hope the sane part of the minds prevails!

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