It was because of the support of the Congress that Sheikh Abdullah, who was one time an anti-national and would call the congressmen as "worms of a gutter", was reinstalled, in 1975 as Chief Minister. Rajiv Gandhi who had dubbed Farooq Abdullah a pro-Pak and a security threat for the country, entered into an agreement with the same Farooq and installed him as the Chief Minister. Kashmir went in the hands of the subversives because of this policy of "dislodge and install". The seriousness of the situation in Kashmir can be judged by those orders of militants under which people were directed not to pay taxes, not to deposit their money in nationalised banks, outsiders asked to deposit their passports with the militants, shopkeepers having to hoist green flags on their shops and Muslim women being told wear burqas (veils).
Kashmiri Hindus were started being pressurised for quitting Kashmir. They started receiving threatening letters. Mr. Jagmohan has made a mention of one such letter:
'We know that you have been living in Kashmir for a long time. You have one mill at Barbarshah and one house at Lal Mandi. You have to leave Kashmir immediately otherwise we will blow up your house and factory. We will blow up your house and hotel in Delhi. We direct you to leave Kashmir immediately, otherwise your children will be harmed. We know where they are studying. We also know it that your daughter was recently married. Stop your trade and quit immediately. We are not threatening you. But this land belongs only to the Muslims because this land belongs to God (Allah). Sikhs and Hindus cannot stay here. If you did not accept it, we shall start from your children. Independence of Kashmir Zindabad."
Uprooting and Migration of Kashmiri Hindus
There was impact of this atmosphere of terror. The Hindu of Kashmir, who had stood his ground hitherto despite facing many ordeals, got terrorised. There was no other alternative left for him except for leaving the land of Kashmir. Migration started gradually. The rate of the incidents of killing of innocent Kashmiri Pandits, burning of their houses, loot of their property, insults and abduction of their women increased. A Kashmiri Pandit leader, Mr. Dwarika Nath Munshi, has compiled figures on the killings of Hindus and atrocities they were subjected to. According to Munshi, more than 700 Kashmiri Hindus, about 100 non-Kashmiri Hindus and over ane dozen Sikhs were mercilessly and brutally killed. About 150 of those KashIhiri Muslims were killed who had treated well their Hindu neighbours. These people were either strangled or their bodies were ripped open. In other cases their limbs were chopped off. Militants thrust iron rods into the bodies of many and peeled of their skin while they were alive. Mutilated bodies were thrown to rot. Nobody was prepared to perform the last rites of the dead.
Out of the three lakh people displaced from the Valley, about 1.50 lakh people are passing their days in difficulty in camps and in rented houses in Jammu and its adjoining areas. About 50,000 displaced people are scattered in Delhi and its neighbouring areas. The rest are staying in camps or other houses in Chandigarh, Amritsar, Jalandhar, Agra, Gaziabad, Faridabad, Shimla, Jaipur, Lucknow, Varanasi, Bhopal, Madras, Banglore, Bombay and Calcutta. Many people have taken temporary refuge in the houses of their relations and friends in the plains. In Kashmir the vacant houses of the Hindus have been looted. Till now over 1500 houses have been set ablaze. Colleges and educational institutions run or owned by Hindus and other religious institutions have been damaged in arson and bomb blasts.
It is highly ridiculous that even this mass destruction and exodus of Hindus has been made a victim of the mean mentality of appeasement. Those leaders who view the entire ignoble and condemnable scene of events with their political lenses have no time to enquire about the difficulties of these Hindus. The then Prime Minister, V. P. Singh, who was highly shaken and perturbed over the fate of a few thousand Muslims, trapped in Kuwait during the Gulf war, did not enquire about the condition of these three lakh upraoted Hindus. It was done only to prevent loss of the Muslim vote bank. The ruling Congress leaders did not think it proper to worry about these three lakh displaced Hindus. No Minister, no Prime Minister or a top Congress leader has peeped into the plight of these Hindus who have been facing the onslaught of the vagaries of weather in the camps. Had such a misfortune befallen just 300 Muslims, the entire Army of Ministers and the Prime Minister would have been on the alert. These leaders would have shed crocodile tears in order to influence the Muslim vote bank.
This is unfortunate for both India and Muslims. These political leaders have treated Muslims as a commodity of votes. They exploited it but never allowed them to come closer to the national mainstream. The religious and political leaders of the Muslim society too left no stone unturned in pushing the society into the darkness of bigotry. The result was the Muslim society was caught in the jaws of the greed for power of the ruling party and the religious rigidity of Molvis and Mullahs. Foreign fundsmentslist farces took advantsge of it and incited Muslim youths to turn anti-India. Kashmir is a living example of this fact.
Jagmohan stakes his life
Kashmir had almost fallen in the hsnds of Pakistan because of Pakistani interference, ridiculous and sceptical policies of Jammu snd Kashmir Government and carelessness of the Government of India. The administration was getting under the grip of terrorists. The police, the courts and main Government departments had either become passive spectators or were supporting the militants. Seeing that Kashmir was getting lost, the Centre, after proper thought, appointed Jagmohan as Governor of the State because he was a seasoned administrator and an experienced officer. He had remained Governor of the State earlier and during that time he had displayed administrative calibre and love for people. Therefore, his appointment made nstionalist people in the state and in the entire country happy. Jagmohan held the reins of the paralysed administration in his strong hands.
He asked his adviser, Jameel Qureshi, to prepare a brief but comprehensive report on the situation of the State so that he could go through it. The report of Qureshi gives a clear glimpse of the situation that existed in the state prior to the appointment of Jagmohan as Governor.
As per the report, almost all people believe that Kashmir was either getting liberated or would merge with Pakistan by January 1990. In reality, militants had made a commitment that January 26 would be the deadline set for the declaration of independent Republic of Kashmir and the foreign press correspondents would be invited to watch the birth of the new Republic. The Government orders would remain in force within the walls of the chambers. The morale of the police had totally collapsed. There was mutiny within the Police when the JKAP men gheroaed their officers and had recovered security fund on the gun point. Instead of tackling militants they were assisting and inciting them.
One can imagine the extent of disorder and the deteriorating situation in the state from the contents of the Qureshi report. The state administration was so much under the spell of the terror of terrorists that they could not utter a word which could be treated as against militancy. People were so much scared as that they would obey all the orders and information of the militants without any reservation. Despite all this, the Muslim society was in the grip of a peculiar and surprising mental trend which was evident from its hope that Kashmir would be liberated soon. The entry of Jagmohan as Governor of the State was an act of danger, courage and nationalism in the light of the situation that existed at that time. In reality Jagmohan had to enter into the den of the lion and tame him.
The appointment of Jagmohan as Governor dismayed and annoyed fully two segments of the State. The first was the militants who, like Mohd. Ali Jinnah, had thought that Kashmir, like a ripe apple, w as about to fall in the bag. With his determination and unique capacity for work, Jagmohan washed away all their ignoble plans. The second segment was in Delhi. It was Rajiv Gandhi and his colleagues who feared that the success of Jagmohan would be treated as success of the non-Congress Government in the Centre. This Rajiv group would not like to see any non-congress Government achieving success at any cost. But more dismayed than these two groups was the Chief Minister, Dr. Farooq Abdullah. Farooq had two ressons for being worried over it. First, he had friendly relations with both the groups. Farooq was the rubber stamps of both the terrorists and the Rajiv band. Secondly, Farooq saw his anti-national face getting exposed. Therefore, the three forces, Kashmiri separatists, Farooq Abdullah and the Rajiv group, launched a tirade against Jagmohan. The terrorists decided to step up their armed activities. Their patron, the then Pakistan Prime Minister, Ms Benazir Bhtto, while supporting Pakistani interference and assistance, announced that Jagmohan would be converted into "Bhagmohan", meaning thereby that he would be forced to quit Kashmir. Dr. Farooq Abdullah resigned from the post of the Chief Ministership and Rajiv Gandhi started his conspiracy by dubbing Jagmohan as anti-Muslim.
The truth had been established that Kashmiri terrorists and Dr. Farooq Abdullah were, by birth, traitors of India, but now Rajiv Gandhi too displayed his inborn devotion to Abdullah family by opposing the national activities and plans of Jagmohan. In this context Rajiv Gandhi gave a display of the attitude which was similar to Pandit Nehru and Indira Gandhi.
It is also an unfortunate coincidence that the fate of Kashmir got crushed in the mill of domestic friendship between two top families, their hunger for power and their ambiguous political style. One dynasty, in the shape of Sheikh Abdullah, Gulshah and Farooq, kept on ruling Kashmir and the other dynasty, in the form of Nehru, Indira and Rajiv, remained as rulers in Delhi. The current problem of Kashmir is a monument of the friendship between these two dynasties.
Sh. Jagmohan, soon after assuming power, dissolved the State Assembly. It was necessary to do it in the interest of the nation. Many Assembly members were known to Jagmohan and he knew their links with pro-Pak terrorists. He also knew that they were using their political influence for giving all help to the terrorists. Therefore, Jagmohan broke the political back of such elements by his first strike. After this, the Governor imposed prolonged spell of curfew restrictions in areas affected by militancy in the Valley to launch massive search operations. The result of these operations was that large quantities of arms and ammunition and foreign weapons, used for violence, were recovered. A big section of terrorists was arrested. Jagmohan ousted pro-Pak officers and employees in the administration and many vital departments were reorganised. He also succeeded in bridling those editors and newsmen who had launched a powerful publicity campaign in support of the violent agitation for "independent" Kashmir in the name of Islam.
This way the back bone of terrorism started breaking. Immediately the Governor took another bold step. On April 16, 1990 he declared prominent militant outfits, Jamait-e-Islami, Hizhul Mujahideen, JKLF, Students Liberation Front, Mahazi Azadi, Islamic Students League, People's League and Islamic Jamitul Tulba as unlawful and imposed ban on them. This was done under the State Criminal Law Amendment Act. As a result of this ban, the bank accounts of Jamait-e-Islami were sealed. The inflamatory speeches of this organisation were stopped. Many leaders of this organisation were arrested. As many as 147 schools, run by Falai-e-Aam Trust, supporter of Jamait-e-Islami, were closed. About 15,000 students, who were studying in these schools, were given admission in Government schools.
One praiseworthy aspect of his successes was that Jagmohan received full support from the nationalist Muslims for his work otherwise it was very difficult to fight Muslim influenced terrorism in the Muslim majority region. Jagmohan has written "I received full co-operation from the Army, BSF, CRPF, Information service, police officers besides several civil authorities". He had received encouragement from them and whenever he would ring up anyone even at midnight, he would get right reply. In the context of this situation The Tribune had written that a famous security expert had expressed surprise as to how a bureaucrat could secure cent percent confidence of the Army ? Similarly the Indian Express had written that now onwards the liberation slogans are not shouted from the mosques of the valley and the flags of JKLF and Hizbul Mujahideen are not seen now. Their names have been removed from the walls. After a long time, the life appears normal in the city.
Rajiv and Fernandes hurdle in Jagmohan's way
The improving situation in Kashmir could not be tolerated by Rajiv Gandhi and many other political leaders of his like. They could see their political base being shaken. By abandoning the national interest, Rajiv Gandhi came to a low level of political manoeuvres. While touring the country he started denigrating Jagmohan. He even insulted the Indian Army. The former Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi, got busy in appeasing the Muslim vote bank by propagating alleged "excesses" on the people of Kashmir by the security forces. As a result of this campaign an All Party Delegation, led by the then Deputy Prime Minister, Devi Lal, visited Kashmir on March 9, 1990.
During this trip Rajiv Gandhi displayed his childish and selfish behaviour. He openly criticised all the arrangements made by the Governor. He entered into argument with many members on trivial issues. By playing up the issue of discourteous attitude of Jagmohan towards the Deputy Prime Minister, he finished the main purpose of the delegation. As a result of this irresponsib]e and mean behaviour of Rajiv Gandhi the delegation returned without doing any solid and constructive work. Possibly Rajiv Gandhi would have felt happy over it, but history will never forget him for harming the nation and Kashmir. Top newspapers in the country criticised in strong words the behaviour of Rajiv Gandhi. An instance:
Editorial of the Indian Express of March 14, 1990: The Congress (I) and the National Conference members of the All Party Committee gave a display of their opportunism. It became evident that they, instead of the interest of the country, think in terms of political and self-interest. It is hoped that they will not try to create hurdles for the sake of self-interest, in the work of the Samiti which is trying to save Kashmir.
George Fernandes was a major obstacle in the way of Jagmohan. He was appointed Minister incharge of Kashmir Affairs. He too wanted to give priority to his political ambition and he took many decisions, without the knowledge of the Governor, which placed the Government officers in a fix. In a way Kashmir had now two Governors. The misfortune of that Army can be imagined which is guided by two commanders who simultaneously issue different orders. According to Jagmohan "had George Fernandes worked with me together under the above plan, it would have been better. But the personal political ambition of George deviated him from this path. On becoming the Minister for Kashmir Affairs, he independently started working haphazardly and secretly. His idea was that he would enlarge his national personality by solving the Kashmir problem. He projected me as a fundamentalist. He wanted me to be projected as a fundamentalist and himself as progressive and liberal. He wanted to show that he will start such a political process which will immediately prove successful. I was shocked over the style of thinking and approach. His actions harmed me a lot. More painful is that it harmed greatly the nation".
The anti-Jagmohan forces became ready to harm Kashmir. Their only aim of life was to overthrow Jagmohan in the interest of their political ambitions. Jagmohan has given another example of the policy of appeasement of Muslims pursued by V.P. Singh and George Fernandes. Jagmohan has written that George Fernandes made an untimely statement on the Srinagar station of All India Radio and Doordarshan that V.P. Singh is in agreement with the demand that in local news bulletins President be called "Sadr" and Prime Minister as 'Wazir-e-Azam" when the practice of using the nomenclature of Pradhan Mantri and Rashtrapati was going on. He also said that the Prime Minister has agreed that at the end of each news bulletin the word "Khuda Hafiz" can be used.
The above incident indicates the extent to which these people can go while opposing Jagmohan. 1t is highly condemnable and cannot be forgiven as to how anti-Jagmohan forces tried to undermine those very traditions for which people of Jammu and Kashmir had, under the banner of Praja Parishad, sacrificed. The way Mother India lost its illustrious son, Dr. Shyamaprasad Mookherjee, while protecting the constitution and Mela Ram achieved martyrdom while preserving India's culture was now being eroded by the anti-Jagmohan forces.
Criticism by Farooq Abdullah
In criticism of Jagmohan Dr. Farooq Abdullah crossed all the limits. It was surprising that not a single central Minister and not even the Prime Minister himself remained unmoved by it. Rajiv Gandhi had to support Farooq because of his in born traditions but the then ruling party too backed Dr. Abdullah. On February 7, 1991 Farooq's statement was published in the Times of India in which he had said that he had instructed his partymen to lie low, cross the border and receive arms training. He had directed them to "do anything but not remain in the clutches of Jagmohan". Even a simple minded person can read the meaning in the statement of Farooq Abdullah. "Cross the border and receive arms training" is a clear case of revolt against the nation. But the leaders, intoxicated by the appeasement policy of Muslims, did not ponder over the statement seriously.
Jagmohan risked his life and the way he saved Kashmir from the control of Pakistan through his unique administrative capacity has been highly appreciated and praised in the entire country. But it proved an eye sore for the vote greedy people. Dr. Farooq had given vent to his frustration in an Urdu newspaper of Kashmir on February 15, 1990. He had said that as a "killer and in the garb of Chengez Khan the Governor was dead set to turn the valley of Kashmir into a big graveyard. Since January 20 it is difficult, because of continuous curfew restrictions, to say how many hundreds of people have been killed by the Army and the paramilitaty forces. At a time when citizens of Kashmir see with their eyes how their dear nation is turning to a huge graveyard, I wish to appeal to my people and the entire world and they should, as protector of humanity, enquire into shameful steps".
This statement eveals the real mind of Farooq who had not treated those militants as killers and Changez Khan who had killed Kashmiri Pandits, destroyed their houses and families and were responsible for their exodus to become mendicants in their own country. But when terrorists started getting mauled by the security forces, it resulted in a lightning in the valley of Kashmir and the Gavernor was dubbed as killer and Changez Khan.
Conspiracy against Jagmohan: Assassination of Molvi Farooq
Since Jagmohan became popular in the entire country because of his strong steps against militants, his opponents failed to dislodge him and all their schemes in this direction could not succeed so long he was in the chair. Suddenly the fortune's wheel turned in different direction. On May 21, 1990 Mirwaiz Molvi Farooq was killed. The killing of tho Maulana changed the course of history of Kashmir. The killing was part of a deep conspiracy. All militant outfits became active soon after the killing and, as per the plan, circulated a rumour in the town that someone got the Molvi killed. As planned earlier, a massive procession was taken out in the city. The crowd took possession of the body of the Maulana in a discourteous way. The angry processionists attacked one picket of the CRPF and destroyed it. Eight jawans including its commsnder were injured. When this violent procession was stopped near Islamia College by the security forces, stone pelting started from the crowd. Some militants attacked a CRPF picket at Hawal with AK-47 rifles. There was crossfire in which some were killed and others injured. Another rumour was set afloat in the city that Maulana Farooq was neither killed by a militant nor by a Kashmiri.
The purpose behind these rumours was clear. It was planned to hold the state Government responsible for the killing of Molvi Farooq so that an atmosphere against Jagmohan was created in the country. But the chowkidar of Molvi Sahib, Ghulam Qadir Sofi, made a statement which silenced the opponents of the Government. He said "all the youths were Kashmiris. They were well built and of medium height and had fair complexion". The Sofi had caught hold of one of the assailants but he managed to escape. He had followed him upto the University gate but after that nothing was known about him. Therefore, the incident seems to be a conspiracy which proved successful.
Jagmohan's opponents raised a political storm and in fact these politicians were not against Jagmohan but against V.P. Singh. They had nothing to do with the Kashmir "problem", security of the nation and unity of the country. These were power hungry leaders who could speak any immoral thing, do anything unconstitutional and could feel anything which is anti-national. Thus, Rajiv Gandhi, Chandrashekhar and all leftists launched "sack Jagmohan" campaign unashamedly. All joined hands at this juncture. Famous for his opportunism, V.P. Singh too thought it advisable to support the anti-Jagmohan group in order to save his chair. According to Jagmohan, George Fernandes and his colleagues were adept in the technique of utilising "my successes" for their benefit. Fernandes had started taking advantage of the weaknesses of V. P. Singh and tried to make him believe certain things. The weakness of V.P. Singh was that he wanted to win over the Muslim voters. He had realised that V.P. Singh's political strategy was to influence the Muslims and the fanatics in order to dilute the influence of the BJP. He, thererore, made V.P. Singh to believe that whatever progress and improvement have been registered in Kashmir, the credit is being given to the BJP and not to the Janata Dal.
It can be treated as a misfortune for the country that an able and successful Governor like Jagmohan had to be a victim of the politics of appeasement of Muslims and of votes. Whether he was asked to resign or he himself was forced to resign is not important. The important fact is that between the chair and the nation the former proved more valuable. It can be said that the assassination of Mirwaiz Molvi Farooq was the assassination of Kashmir. History will never forgive V.P. Singh, Chandrashekhar and Rajiv Gandhi for their anti-national deeds.
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