JK News Today  special commentary

Jammu, June 29:

Ahead of the All-Party Meet convened by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Jammu and Kashmir and the commentary  after that has been subjected to  a  twisted narrative   suggesting that this was a “ walk back” moment for the Modi Government . This is  a  deliberate attempt to undermine the  importance of the meet  and   pragmatism  that characterized it.

Two things should be very clear ;  the  meet offered a platform to  exchange ideas on the developing situation in  Jammu and Kashmir , and ,  the ways to  end the political deadlock that had defined the landscape following August 5, 2019 decisions – scrapping of special status  of  J&K under Article 370  and its bifurcation into the two union territories.

Where is the walk back ? The answer  these “ experts” have provided is  that the BJP leadership that had dubbed the leaders of the leaders  of  People’s Alliance for  Gupkar Declaration  as “ Gupkar Gang”, and now the same very set of leaders were among the invitees to the meet . Their argument is that Delhi has  reversed its  position by doing so .  This is illogical to say the least .

J&K is integral part of India

Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India  – this article of faith of the Indian union reflects two things that the people of the territory living on it  were Indians  and  post August 5, 2019,  if there  were any differences in  terms of the constitutional  barriers  that, too, stand  removed  once and for all.  Therefore, talking to the people of the country  is no walk back. It was narrowing of differences and  that, by any stretch of imagination, is not a U-Turn.

There is no doubt that “ Gupkar Gang” term was used. The context and symbolism of this phrase make it clear why it was used .   In the first place , it has to be understood  what the Gupkar Declaration which came as a joint statement of six parties, including  National Conference, People’s Democratic Party , CPI-M and People’s Conference ,  on August 22, 2020 , was  all about ?

 Gupkar Declaration

It read : “ We all reiterate our commitment to collectively fight to restore the Special Status of J&K as guaranteed under the Constitution and commitments made from time to time . There is unanimity amongst s that collective institution is the effective way to fight for these rights and tirelessly struggle to get back the special status and the  constitutional  guarantees  forcibly taken away, against our will .”. But  more significantly it underlined : “ We want to assure the people that all our political activities will be subservient to the sacred goal of reverting  to the status of J&K as it existed on August 4, 2019.”

BJP that had fought hard and got the Article 370 could not have tolerated this for two reasons, one, it was against  what the party and its government had done on August 5, 2019 , secondly,  the Gupkar Declaration  that was institutionalized as PAGD  in mid-October last year , was trying to give a bad name to the political activities , something like what the Plebiscite Front had done in Kashmir from 1950s to  mid 1970s. This was unacceptable to the nation – the plebiscite front was an anti-India grouping , and the PAGD, despite showing its commitment to the constitution , was walking on the same path .

Who walked Back ?

It was the PAGD that could not stick  to its commitment  and took part in the DDC polls . That was the U-turn from its August 22, 2020 stand . The openings were provided by the PAGD and  the national leadership could not have remained oblivious to it . Fighting an election and using the  rough language is different from the statecraft .

Again , on June 9, the PAGD had stated that its doors were open for talks and it wanted an invite from the Centre, that was sent to it . There is no walk back, it was listening to own people . It  is ironical that when  the Government was maintaining tough stand toward these leaders, these elements  were pouncing on government for being tough, and now when it has opened the doors for reconciliation it is being accused of walk back.. So, who is walking back .