And for a Friday after the historic reunification of Jammu & Kashmir with India….. some thoughts….. some musings…..
Some historical facts – October 22nd 1947, Jinnah, the creator of Pakistan, surreptitiously supported by Lord Mountbatten and then PM of UK, Clement Attlee sent Tribal Raiders into Kashmir to overthrow the Hindu King. VP Menon, then Secretary, GOI, under Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, rushed Indian Army support and helped Maharaj Hari Singh escape to Jammu where he signed the Accession to India. Three other Indian rulers, Junagadh, Hyderabad and Travancore Maharajas also tried to stay away till Sardar Patel warned them and moved the Indian Army against them. So, finally all 565 Princely states joined Union. My father, who was with the Travancore Maharaja as part of his Army had to Report in 1949 to Southern Command Poona with just seven days notice. Thus from 1952, I became a Punekar and from 1969 a Mumbaikar.
Article 370 had limited the Central Govt role to only Defense, External Affairs and Communications. All others were the prerogative of the Local J&K Govt and was an open invitation for Corruption, Pakistani Terrorism and Misgovernance. It’s repeal should be welcomed by all Indians. Kashmiris are such loving and innocent people. My earliest remembrance is the visit in 1979 just after marriage. The TATA Company I then worked for had booked a suite in Hotel Highlands Park, the same in which the Film Bobby’s famous song was shot. What fun. Kashmir, a Paradise on Earth with Pine, Fir and Gulmohar trees, bucket list of “To -do” items like Shalimar Bagh, Mandatory couple photo in Kashmiri dress and Jewellery, Shankaracharya Temple, Hazratmal shrine etc. etc. It was so nice. May the Kashmiris enjoy peace and warmth again.
Let’s all hope and pray that calm returns fastest. Let us all support the reunification process. Let our Kashmiri brothers and sisters get better jobs, better future, the loving way, the Ethical way, the SEEGOS way.