Shri Narender Sehgal acquired his Master’s degrees in Political Science and History from Punjab University. He completed his school and college education from Dharamshala (Himachal Pradesh) and Rohtak (Haryana) respectively. He was an eloquent speaker right from his college days and possessed the promise of an accomplished author. He had profound interest in journalism and deep penchant for writing on issues of national and social significance. He was Organising Secretary of Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarathi Parishad (ABVP) for 2 years (1970 - 1972). Influenced by the high ideals of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh from early stage, he worked as Pracharak in Delhi and Panjab till 1982. In 1975, when a state of emergency was declared in the country, Shri Sehgal actively participated in the nation-wide protest against the unjust and oppressive Congress regime, was arrested under MISA and spent 14 months in Tihar Jail in Delhi. He worked as Editor for various monthly magazines. Viz. ‘Tarun Deep’ (Hindi) published from Rohtak (1970-72), ‘Rawani’ (Punjabi) and ‘Pathik’ (Hindi) from Chandigarh (1981-83) and Tavi Deepika (Hindi) from Jammu (1983-89). Later, Shri Sehgal worked as Bureau Chief (Jammu- Kashmir) in ‘Dainik Bhaskar’.
The people of Jammu & Kashmir, continuously under severe strain due to the ethnic, regional and constitutional problems confronting them for the last 63 years, are a hapless lot. The problem that emerged with the partition of India has aggravated and worsened with the passage of time.
The numerous problems which remain unsolved include incomplete accession of the state, the Article 370, the unresolved issue of citizenship of lakhs of people who migrated from Pakistan, the rehabilitation of lakhs of innocent people who were forced to leave their home and hearth in the border areas during the wars between India and Pakistan, denial of legitimate rights to the people of Jammu and Ladakh, the back-breaking poverty of Ladakhis, spate of terrorism, the issue of rehabilitation of lakhs of Kashmiri Pandits displaced from their homes and innumerable other social problems faced by the people all these years. Worse still, the Tricolor, symbol of our National Honour, which is hoisted every year throughout the country with great enthusiasm is set on fire at the Lal Chowk in Srinagar by the subversive elements to show humiliation and dishonour to the Indian nation.
In fact, the legacy that our country inherited along with the freedom was full of problems mainly relating to Jammu & Kashmir. The territorial and constitutional issues concerning other princely states were, sooner or later, resolved. With the reorganisation of states, their developmental work and reconstruction got underway and efforts to refine the administrative machinery in the country brought some results. But the state of Jammu & Kashmir could not be brought within the administrative and constitutional purview of the country. Resultantly, the state moved from one crisis to another, thus aggravating the malady. No worthwhile solution could improve the situation. Rather, the voice of separatism became louder, the scourge of terrorism raised its ugly head and despite deployment of armed forces in the state which proved huge drain on India’s resources, the problem continued to deteriorate.
Even after six decades, the constitutional status of the state has come in for sharp questioning. What could be more pathetic than the fact that the successive governments have to proclaim repeatedly that "Jammu & Kashmir is an inseparable part of India." This frequent pronouncement made on every occasion of national and historical significance, by our leaders, weakens our position and sends negative signal to the entire world.
Unfortunately, the Indian Constitution has yet to establish its jurisdiction in the state of Jammu & Kashmir. The people from other parts of the country do not enjoy the same rights in the state as the Kashmiris. They cannot settle in the state as they are not entitled to buy property or exercise their voting right or get employment in government sector. Now the situation has become so perilous that people from other parts of the country are unsafe and exposed to constant risk in the state. How strange it is that even the President of India and the Government officials are treated as "foreigners" in the state. Hon. President cannot declare a state of emergency in the state, the laws formulated by the Parliament are not enforceable in the state. What is worse, along with the Indian Tricolor, green flag of the state displaying the sign of, plough’ has to be hoisted. The Union government, instead of curbing the divisive and secessionist forces which cropped up due to the introduction ofArtic1e 370, is succumbing to the pressure of the separatists and political parties led by fanatics and fundamentalists.
Not only Indian citizens, even lakhs of people who migrated from Pakistan and settled in the state in 1947, have not been granted the citizenship rights. This is gross violation of law and denial of the legitimate rights of the people. At the time of partition, all the emigrants from Pakistan who settled in various parts of India were given compensation in the form of land, property etc. in lieu of the property left by them in Pakistan. But the people who opted to settle in Jammu & Kashmir have not been compensated for loss of land, property etc. they owned in Pakistan. Ironically, people who moved from Jammu & Kashmir and settled in Pakistan, return, take possession of their property, sell them and go back to Pakistan unrestrained by the state.
The people of Jammu and Ladakh are the worst victims of discrimination and inequality. The Union government has so far granted millions of rupees for development of the entire state but major portion of the funds has been spent on Kashmir alone which has always got preferential treatment. Sadly, the move has misfired as the doles of money have landed in the hands of the Kashmiri separatists and militants who use it for fomenting terrorism. Perhaps the patriotic people of Jammu and Ladakh are paying, through their poverty and backwardness, the price for their spirit of love for the nation. In every sphere, be it representation in state assembly, education, employment or developmental programmes, they are far behind the people of Kashmir.
During the four wars with Pakistan, the people residing in the border areas were forced to leave their homes, hearth and property and were settled in other parts of the country, as a temporary measure, but these people are still wandering as homeless, struggling for their settlement. The plight of the displaced people from Poonch and Rajouri sectors is so grave that their children have no opportunities of education and employment. At least one generation of these people displaced during wars in 1965 and 1971, has lost everything with no future for their children.
Tormented by terrorism, more than 3.5 lakh Kashmiri Pandits who left their homes are struggling to eke out a living in other parts of the country. No government in Jammu & Kashmir has been able to settle them in their homes. The menace of terrorism has increased many fold, compelling even the Muslims to leave the valley.
When the entire nation celebrates the hard-won freedom every year, there is hardly anything to rejoice for vast majority of the people in the state. The reasons for such sorry state of affairs are not hard to fathom. The political compulsions of the Centre and State government, vote bank policies based on appeasement of a particular community, lack of determination and will power to deal with the menace - all these factors are strengthening the resolve of the separatists and terrorists.
In view of the above facts, this book "Jammu & Kashmir - A State in Turbulence" has been written to reveal some significant aspects of the problem and factors which are relevant in the overall context, such as the glorious past of Kashmir, role played by patriotic and great nationalists, causes of the present chaos, some historical facts suppressed so far and above all proposed constitutional provisions essential for the future of Jammu & Kashmir.
This book also highlights the grave mistakes committed by India’s first Prime Minister, Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru in Kashmir affairs, Historical contribution made by the late Pujya M.S. Golwalkar, the second Sarsanghchalak of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) in the accession of Jammu & Kashmir to India, the great sacrifice of Dr. Shyama Prasad Mukherjee for saving Kashmiri people from the clutches of Pakistan and the great work done by numerous RSS volunteers to protect and preserve the National Honour in Jammu & Kashmir.
I express my gratitude to those scholar friends who accepted graciously my request for providing all important inputs and facilities for this book and spared their invaluable time to guide me throughout the project. I am particularly thankful to esteemed Shri Arun Kumar Ji, Prant Pracharak, RSS (Jammu), who has deep insight in respect of the delicately poised ‘present’, glorious ‘past’ and sensitive ‘future’ of the State. His cooperation and guidance in bringing out this book, right from the conceptual stage to the completion, has been quite significant. For all the errors and omissions regarding material facts and the language of this book, I take the responsibility. I will expect and appreciate the feedback with suggestions, from all friends and readers, to improve this work.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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