Reject Interlocutors report in Totality; Nation Wide Protest to ‘Save Jammu- Kashmir’

published on July 3, 2012

Nation-wide massive protest rejecting Jammu-Kashmir interlocutors Report

A nation-wide protest has been organized to save Jammu-Kashmir, rejecting interlocutors report on July 6th 2012. The protest will be conducted at various district headquarters of states all over the country.

The Home ministry of the Government of India constituted a three member interlocutors group on 13 October, 2010 to find a solution to the Jammu-Kashmir issue.  The interlocutors submitted their report on 12 October, 2011.  The Home ministry after suppressing the report for 7 months made it public only on 24 May 2012.

Prima facie the report is not only objectionable but highly damaging to the unity, integrity and sovereignty of the nation.  In a way the demands of the separatists have been given official sanction through this report.

Recommendations of the Interlocutors

    Retain the Artcile 370 as it asserts the unique status of the state.  Delete the word ‘Temporary’ from the heading of Article 370 and replace it with the word ‘Special’.

This is the only Article of the constitution which the makers of the constitution added for a limited period of time.  Sheikh Abdullah himself was a member of the constituent assembly and had signed for this provision thus giving it his approval.

    Promptly ensure that movement of people, goods and services across the LOC and international border is free from any hindrances.  For this constitute a combined committe of advisors or a united organisation from both sides of the border which will plan for the development of the whole region.

To ensure that this be done, it is not only required to take the consent of the separatists groups in India but also the consent of so called Azad Jammu-Kashmir government and governments of Pakistan and China.  The above recommendation also means that India abandon its position, of 6 decades, on Jammu-Kashmir that it is an internal matter and accept the sovereignty of so called Azad Jammu-Kashmir government, Pakistan and China respectively and forsake its claim.  The interlocutors have recognized the sovereignity of Pakistan over illegally occupied territories by mentioning it as Pakistan Administered Areas (PAK) throughout the report instead of mentioning as Pakistan Occupied Territory (POK).

    Considering the Nehru-Sheikh accord of 1952 as the foundation, a constitutional committee should be established to review all Central Acts and Articles of the Constitution of India extended to the State of Jammu and Kashmir and any such laws that breach the autonomy granted to the state under article 370 should be withdrawn.

The truth is that the Artcile 370 is a mere a procedural mechanism that does not guarantee any autonomy to the state.  Moreover, the laws that are applicable to Jammu-Kashmir under this mechanism are also in force in other parts of the country.  If the same laws are for the welfare of 120 crore Indians, how can it be against the welfare of 1 crore 20 lakh people of Jammu-Kashmir.  It is notable here that in 1952 Sheikh Abdullah had no legislative authority and hence any agreement (even if any done) with him is neither statutory nor is it binding.

    Gradually reduce the ratio of the officials recruited from All-India services and increase the number of recruits from state civil services.

All states in the country have 66% of the administrative officials from the All-India services and the remaining are recruited from the state civil services.  This ratio has already been reduced to 50% in Jammu and Kashmir.  To recommend steady reduction of this ratio further is an attempt to completely stop the intervention of the centre.  This also means that the centre only doles out grants but cannot expect any accountability in its distribution owing to the dearth of its central officials.

    Urdu nomenclatures for the posts of Governor and Chief Minister which are Sadr.e-Riyasat and Wazir-e-Azam respectively should be used.

In other words this is an attempt to reinstate the pre-1952 status against which Late Shri Shyam Prasad Mukherjee started a movement and sacrificed his life.

    The state government shall send three names to the President for the selection of the governor.  The President shall opt one among these to be appointed as Governor.

According to our federal constitution, the Governor is the representative of the President in a state.  Selection of the governor by the state government is not only unconstitutional but it is also repudiation of the authority of the president.  How could any one be considered a representative of the president when the president himself does not have the authority to either appoint or change him?

    Parliament will make no laws applicable to the State unless it relates to the country’s internal and external security and its vital economic interests.

The constitution authorizes the Parliament to make laws on any subject of the union list for any of the states including Jammu-Kashmir and make amendments to them.  No state in the union has the right to challenge this authority of the Parliament.

    Jammu Kashmir is a bridge between South and Central Asia, take all appropriate measures to establish this bridge.

This observation is highly objectionable.  Jammu-Kashmir is an inalienable part of India and in this view it is India’s door to Central Asia.  This attempt to provide it a sovereign identity which is severed from India by mentioning it as a bridge between two geographical regions is deplorable.

    Withdraw the army from the urban and rural areas and send them back to the barracks.  Remove the Disturbed Areas (DA) designation, amend the Public Safety Act (PSA) and withdraw the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA).

It is due to the efforts of the Army and security forces, in which the sacrifice of the lives of more than 5000 soldiers is involved, that there is some visible improvement in the situation of the state.  Even before this peace becomes a permanent doctrine in the state, recalling the army due to political considerations or withdrawing acts that grant it special powers will be a dangerous step.  Even a small oversight can push the state which is advancing towards peace into a period of violence.

    Open all routes across the LOC; multiple entry-exit permits should be granted out not only for trading purposes but also for common citizens; Expedite the road and railway line projects that are planned across the border towards completion and encourage tourism across both the sides of the LOC.

If in the name of trade and tourism the border is opened for movement from both sides, it will only make the entry route easy for the Pakistan sponsored terrorists.  This will also invalidate the p8urpose for which crores have been spent on fencing the borders.  It will enable the terrorists across the boroder to gain entry into Punjab and rest of the country through Jammu.

    Resume the GOI-Hurriyat dialogue at the earliest opportunity and this dialogue should be made uniterruptible.  Encourage Pakistan and Pakistani-administered Jammu and Kashmir to enter into dialogue on the points emerging from the GOI-Hurriyat dialogue.

To suggest that the Government of India start a dialogue with Hurriyat, which denied to even meet the interlocutors, is meaningless.  Likewise, involving Pakistan in such a dialogue is akin to Government of India deviating from its stand in UN and other international forums, whereas till date Pakistan has never ever given any indication of vacating from the areas under its illegal occupation.

    Release ‘stone-pelters’ and political prisioners; provide amnesty for militants who renounce violence; Facilitate the return of those Kashmiris who crossed over the LOC to receive arms training and all of them should be rehabilitated.

This suggestion is not interlocutors own.  It is the separatist Hurriyat conference which had voiced similar demands through various mediums and the interlocutors have submissively retained it among their recommendations.

Thus the interlocutors report is a bundle of contradictions and a part of the international conspiracy to separate Jammu-Kashmir from the rest of nation.  Any kind of debate is not possible on this anti-national document.  This report should be rejected in its totality and it is absolutely necessary to directly challenge this trend.

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