The assertions of former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah over current Kashmir imbroglio that India has been dishonest to the people of Kashmir right from 1947 amply makes one thing clear that New Delhi used the rulers of Kashmir as pawns and used rather changed them against the people’s wishes whenever it found so-called threat to ‘national security’ is imminent.
History is testimony to this fact Sheikh Abdullah who trusted Jawahar Lal Nehru blindly ditched him while from time to time the Chief Ministers were installed in Kashmir to suit the designs of New Delhi. Nehru undermined the authority and position of J&K’s Prime Minister’s office and got the Sheikh arrested in August 9, 1953. It is said that a pro-Indian police officer arrested the Prime Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah from Gulmarg- an action from Nehru that disfigured his statesmanship image in the annals of history. “During the middle of the night, police officer informed Sheikh Abdullah that Bakshi Ghulam Muhammad has been appointed Prime Minister by Nehru and he is under arrest.” Though India has been claiming herself a ‘great democracy’ but the same country cared a fig for the democratic principles while toppling the elected governments in Jammu and Kashmir.
Somebody has aptly remarked that New Delhi never wanted to see a Chief Minister in the state but only a puppet who could dance on their tunes. “People were naïve and simple. There was illiteracy, communication links were weak. Taking advantage of all these factors, Government of India used their puppet leaders to erode the special status of Jammu and Kashmir. Before 30th March 1965, when a ‘mischievous’ amendment to the state’s constitution came into effect, the office was known as Prime Minister of Jammu and Kashmir (Wazir-e-Azam). Subsequently the ruling prime minister, Ghulam Muhammed Sadiq, was sworn in as the first Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir. It was a big blow but people of Kashmir who were in deep slumber didn’t bother to question to the evil intentions of New Delhi.”
After the arrest of Sheikh Abdullah in 1953 when we look at the term rather duration of the tenures of successive Prime Ministers or Chief Ministers of Jammu and Kashmir, again India’s evil designs and intentions comes to fore and one reaches at this conclusion that unlike other Indian state’s New Delhi always wanted to rule Kashmir directly and for this purpose it resorted to treachery, cheat and deceit.
Nehru let Bakshi to rule for a decade and after that it changed the state heads as we change clothes. The tenure of Prime Minister Khawaja Shamsuddin was 140 days, Ghulam Muhammad Sadiq (PM) one year 29 days, Ghulam Muhammad Sadiq (CM) 6 years 257 days (Sadiq was allowed to continue for helping India to erode the position of Prime Minister), Sheikh Abdullah 2 years, 29 days and so on. After the death of Sheikh Abdullah, Farooq Abdullah Government was toppled and he was allowed to rule only for a year and 298 days. From 1953, the state came under direct New Delhi’s rule (Governor’s Rule) for almost a decade from time to time and during all those years, all the measures were taken to undermine the special status of the state.
Nobody can deny this fact that Jammu and Kashmir is the only state in India which has its own Constitution adopted on 17 November 1956, and came into effect on January 26, 1957. So for more than 30 amendments have been affected to the Constitution and most of these amendments were made to demean the status and unique position (Article 370) of Jammu and Kashmir.
Renowned historian A.G. Noorani’s research clearly shows Nehru’s intention on Jammu and Kashmir. He reveals that Nehru was for the abrogation of Article 370. In spite of being an architect of Article 370, Nehru told the Lok Sabha on November 27, 1963, that “it has been eroded, if I may use the word, and many things have been done in the last few years which have made the relationship of Kashmir with the Union of India very close. There is no doubt that Kashmir is fully integrated…. We feel this process of gradual erosion of Article 370 is going on. Some fresh steps are being taken and in the next month or two they will be completed. We should allow it to go on.”
Union Home Minister Gulzari Lal Nanda said in the Lok Sabha on December 4, 1964, that the “only way to take the Indian Constitution to Jammu and Kashmir is through the application of Article 370. It is a tunnel. It is through this tunnel that a good deal of traffic has already passed and more will.” According to Noorani, Nanda concluded: “What happens is that only the shell is there. Article 370, whether you keep it or not, has been completely emptied of its contents. Nothing has been left in it.”
The Indian Government published a White Paper on Jammu and Kashmir in 1948 in an effort to explain the Indian position on the Kashmir dispute. This historic document contains numerous references to the issue of holding free and impartial plebiscite in Kashmir. India’s first Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru who was so keen to occupy Kashmir by hook or crook had once promised to the people of Kashmir that they will allowed to decided about their fate as per their aspirations. After having made a promise of plebiscite to whole international community at UN, to people of Kashmir at Srinagar’s Lal chowk and to his own people in his own parliament, considered by Indians a temple of democracy, Nehru simply reneged on his promise. With the passage of time and dirty political tricks inside Kashmir, Nehru managed to hold on to Kashmir in total defiance to the will of international community. But how did Nehru manage to retain Kashmir in-spite of numerous UN resolutions and international censures. ? As Walter Crocker says in his book – “Nehru-A contemporary estimate P. 65”-Splitting straws and trailing red herrings, such as about aggression by Pathan Marauders or about the validity of instrument of accession signed by the fugitive Mahraja, or about the validity of its confirmation by the packed Kashmir Assembly and building up a huge sandhill of legalism or Pakistan Joining SEATO & CENTO has been a hallmark of his policy of circumvention.
Here I would like to quote some of the world famous and largest circulated newspapers what they talked about Nehru and his Kashmir policy:
The Daily telegraph, Sydney-29th Jan. 1957:
“The Indian Prime Minster Mr. Nehru, has exposed himself as the number one imposter of the international Scene. He parades as a man of peace: an idealist:a staunch champion of the United Nations. He picks up Garlands in Moscow and white House dinners in Washington.From Bangdung To Edinburagh, people have been beguiled by this act. The climax of the Kashmir question,however exposed Nehru for what he is. He wants Kashmir. That is all there is to it. The man of peace ceases to be so. The champion of the UN thumbs his nose at the world organization: the exalted arbiter of international behavior become a thug.”
The Berner Tagwacht, Berne-29th Jan. 1957
“India which likes to play the role of a great promoter of peace in world conflicts, suddenly finds itself put in the wrong through the UN resolution on Kashmir. The fact that India has annexed Kashmir, inspite of security Council’s orders to the contrary, constitutes the worst possible judgment on Indian leader’s understanding of the World situation.”
The Manchester Guardian-Jan. 28 1957
“India has defied the security Council and integrated Kashmir. Nehru can look back on succeeding in the long game he has played with Pakistan, but in the longer game of keeping the world at peace he has injured his own position. By occupying Kashmir and refusing to budge by delaying the plebiscite upon one pretext or another until the idea of plebiscite has gone stale, Mr. Nehru has been able to achieve what he wanted with a minimum of violence. But for future he has stored up a feud with Pakistan which in all reasonable likelihood will bring disaster to both Countries and which will at least distort their foreign policies indefinitely. The Security Council is bound to be angry-more so as India’s action is a flagrant disregard of her promise to the UN in 1951”
The Daily Sketch London-Jan. 28, 1957
“Now the prophet of international morality has turned into the Pharisee. He has flatly defied the UN over Kashmir and he means to go on with his defiance. He is not only a sinner but a stubbornly unrepentant sinner”
The Nation-Rangoon-Jan 28 1957
“To all objective observers it is an open case of stubbornness on the part of India & Nehru who has shown himself capable of flouting every one of the principles which he so ardently preaches to others. Nehru, the dispenser of advice, is on Kashmir issue deaf to all arguments. India’s argument that she would not agree to plebiscite because Pakistan had not yet removed the Azad Kashmir forces while neglecting to mention that the present Govt. of Kashmir was put into office with the aid of Indian forces who are still there”.
Even the then Chief Minister Mr Omar Abdullah on the floor of the House maintained that Kashmri has not merged with India but the Accession is Conditional, the fact that was also accepted by the then Indian Home Minister P.Chidambaram. “Indian jurisdiction extended over only three matters, Defence, Communication and Foreign affairs, but with the passage of time India corrupted the state heads, undermined our authority and rights and today we are at a stage where we have been left with no option but to protest, get caged and killed.”