Worried about Ladakh, Jammu seeking separation
From Khajuria S Kant in Jammu
Even as Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has termed as a dangerous trend the formation of a state based on an agitation, the decision of UPA government to endorse the formation of a separate Telangana state, the Kashmiri politicians have begun feeling the pain of Jammu and Ladakh regions seeking parity with Kashmir region and if the same is not possible, demand for separate state is another worrisome proposition for them.
They have begun debating about the possible consequence of Telangana leading to a new inter-state conflict in Jammu and Kashmir as Ladakh Hill development council is also demanding separate state for Ladakh region of the state. There are also voices in Jammu which strongly believe that a separate state is the best answer to regional disparity.
However according to the politicians of Kashmir, formation of Telangana can prove hazardous for the regional harmony and cultural ethos of Jammu and Kashmir as Ladakh division of the state is among the next 15 states of India which also demands separate states for themselves as ruling united progressive alliance (UPA) which unanimously passed a resolution for creation of separate Telangana state.
The Chief Minister Omar Abdullah fearing political backlash on the creation of Telegana state, in his home state has questioned the political wisdom of the Centre in accepting this demand. Omar fears that it could result in division of the state.
In an interaction with students in Srinagar, Omar said same demand could be made in Jammu also. The granting of statehood to Telegana, is most likely to give impetus to the demand for granting Union Territory status to the Ladakh, which has been festering for too long. The fear of the Omar on this account stems from the fact, that if these demands gain momentum and if they succeed finally, then it will weaken the bogey of Kashmir issue.
A trifurcated Kashmir will become a single entity dominated by a single religion. The issue will be then rolled out as a religious and regional demand which will find no takers outside the Jawahar tunnel. It will also weaken the case of Pakistan over it as its claim on a region which is pre-dominated by Muslim community would also be seen as a religious demand rather than a genuine demand.
Separatists have all along feared and it’s for this reason that even so called hardcore separatists Syed Ali Shah Geelani had only recently said that division of the state can’t be accepted. It’s for this reason that separatists are trying to make a foothold in Jammu region and also in Ladakh.
Kashmir centric parties like PDP and NC have all along been making attempts, though successful in limited manner, to make out a political territory in this region and though not having much base in Ladakh have been making regular rallies there.
Telengana may have different political connotations, but the trifurcation of the J&K would have major repercussions for Kashmir issue. Jammu has acted as buffer zone in this complex politics and NC has exploited it for its personal maximisation.
NC which has ruled the state for the maximum period knows that it will lose its privelege and also say in the Centre if Jammu and Ladakh breaks away and this is what the party can’t afford and it’s for this reason it has expressed fears about it.
State secretary of Communist party of India (Marxist) M.Y.Tarigami said that formation of separate Telangana is likely to ignite a wave of conflict and discomfort in a state which is battling diverse conflicts and added that not only his party at all India level but he himself has always opposed any such move keeping in view the aftermath of formation of one state in the country only on the bases of few things would be like a neglected spark which if not checked can burn the historical and cultural ethos of a state like Jammu and Kashmir within no time.
Tarigrami also added that in our state people from regions like Ladakh who are waiting for any such move by the government can make it an issue and such an issue would be dangerous for the integral unity of Jammu and Kashmir.