FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Lesson in Diplomacy for India’s Consul General Sandeep Chakravorty

It is detrimental to democracy when the Consul General of India to New York, Sandeep Chakravorty, asserts that in order to facilitate the return of the displaced Pandit community, India will build settlements in Kashmir.

This sort of deleterious rhetoric, when employed by diplomats and policy makers, becomes the authoritative discourse of officialdom.

In the current prevailing “culture of fear,” such rhetoric gives further impetus to forces of bigotry and intolerance. The fear of the “other” must be addressed boldly and courageously by rational people not just in the international community, but in mainstream Indian politics as well.

The private gathering at which Consul General Chakravorty voiced his polarizing “diplomacy” in a forceful manner was held in New York City.

His rhetoric was bolstered by a couple of Bollywood bigwigs. Right-wing Bollywood directors and actors, who regale their rapt listeners with disingenuous claims of reviving “Kashmiriyat” through their craft, fail to historicize the concept.

It would behoove sycophants of the BJP in Bollywood to seek a cure for their ignorance.

In the turbulent decades of militancy and militarization, a large constituency of Kashmiri Muslims, at great risk to their lives, kept alive a cultural and religious identity that these phenomena were not able to do away with.

The display of national chauvinism and brazen breach of trust by the Modi government has destroyed the vestiges of Kashmiriyat that we had sought to protect.

Kashmiryat is the unacceptability of any political solution that does not take the aspirations and demands of the Kashmiri people into consideration.

Kashmiryat is the sanctity of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir, which was ratified in 1951 and was an enormous leap toward the process of democratization.

I take great pride in the conviction of my ancestors who climbed every mountain and forded every stream to relay their political message of regional pride, Kashmiri nationalism, and assertion of people’s power.

The cultural identity of the Kashmiri people has been damaged by the erosion of our democratic and autonomous institutions.

We have faced the terrors of insurgency and counter insurgency. And, now we are facing irreparable damage wreaked by authoritarianism.

The nationalist chauvinism, religiosity, and triumphalism after the revocation of the autonomous status of Jammu and Kashmir in the “New” India, which I don’t recognize, is demoralizing and reprehensible

.

We acceded to India in 1947 when communal frenzy was raging throughout the subcontinent. Our ancestors thought that India represented the ideals of secularism and democracy. They believed that, despite temporary aberrations, Hindus, Muslims, and communities would unite.

And, the faith of our ancestors in the ideals of secularism and democracy led them to believe that there would be rule of law and a democracy where religious persecution would cease.

I was raised to not discriminate between Hindus and Muslims. I was taught that the life of a Hindu was as sacred as that of a Muslim, and any harm to a Hindu should be prevented at the cost of our lives, because our religion taught us that it was our duty to defend and help our neighbor, who may be weak.

Today, I see the government of a democratic country deterring the growth of democracy and depoliticizing the people of one of its federating units.

The younger generation of Kashmiris has been disfigured by the inability of national security apparatuses and nation-states–either secular or theocratic—to recognize their political, socioeconomic and cultural aspirations.This generation of Kashmiris is war-weary, embittered, and despondent.

I would hope that we, Kashmiri Muslims as well as Kashmiri Pandits, crave a world in which social justice, political enfranchisement, cultural pride, and self-realization are the order of the day.

I would hope that instead of exacerbating divides, rational Kashmiri Muslims and Kashmiri Pandits could work together to connect, promote social justice, and care for those affected by humanitarian disasters.

Some of us have always believed that the revival of pluralism could be the antidote to the orthodoxy of ethnocentric politics. It could also have been the antidote to the implosion of religion and government.

More articles by:

Nyla Ali Khan is the author of Fiction of Nationality in an Era of Transnationalism, Islam, Women, and Violence in Kashmir, The Life of a Kashmiri Woman, and the editor of The Parchment of Kashmir. Nyla Ali Khan has also served as an guest editor working on articles from the Jammu and Kashmir region for Oxford University Press (New York), helping to identify, commission, and review articles. She can be reached at nylakhan@aol.com.

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550
Weekend Edition
December 06, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Jeffrey St. Clair
Eat an Impeachment
Matthew Hoh
Authorizations for Madness; The Effects and Consequences of Congress’ Endless Permissions for War
Jefferson Morley
Why the Douma Chemical Attack Wasn’t a ‘Managed Massacre’
Andrew Levine
Whatever Happened to the Obama Coalition?
Paul Street
The Dismal Dollar Dems and the Subversion of Democracy
Dave Lindorff
Conviction and Removal Aren’t the Issue; It’s Impeachment of Trump That is Essential
Ron Jacobs
Law Seminar in the Hearing Room: Impeachment Day Six
Linda Pentz Gunter
Why Do We Punish the Peacemakers?
Louis Proyect
Michael Bloomberg and Me
Robert Hunziker
Permafrost Hits a Grim Threshold
Joseph Natoli
What We Must Do
Evaggelos Vallianatos
Global Poison Spring
Robert Fantina
Is Kashmir India’s Palestine?
Charles McKelvey
A Theory of Truth From the South
Walden Bello
How the Battle of Seattle Made the Truth About Globalization True
Evan Jones
BNP Before a French Court
Norman Solomon
Kerry’s Endorsement of Biden Fits: Two Deceptive Supporters of the Iraq War
Torsten Bewernitz – Gabriel Kuhn
Syndicalism for the Twenty-First Century: From Unionism to Class-Struggle Militancy
Matthew Stevenson
Across the Balkans: From Banja Luka to Sarajevo
Thomas Knapp
NATO is a Brain Dead, Obsolete, Rabid Dog. Euthanize It.
Forrest Hylton
Bolivia’s Coup Government: a Far-Right Horror Show
M. G. Piety
A Lesson From the Danes on Immigration
Ellen Isaacs
The Audacity of Hypocrisy
Monika Zgustova
Chernobyl, Lies and Messianism in Russia
Manuel García, Jr.
From Caesar’s Last Breath to Ours
Binoy Kampmark
Going to the ICJ: Myanmar, Genocide and Aung San Suu Kyi’s Gamble
Jill Richardson
Marijuana and the Myth of the “Gateway Drug”
Muzamil Bhat
Srinagar’s Shikaras: Still Waters Run Deep Losses
Gaither Stewart
War and Betrayal: Change and Transformation
Farzana Versey
What Religion is Your Nationalism?
Clark T. Scott
The Focus on Trump Reveals the Democrat Model
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
Do Bernie’s Supporters Know What “Not Me, Us” Means? Does Bernie?
Peter Harley
Aldo Leopold, Revisited
Winslow Myers
A Presidential Speech the World Needs to Hear
Christopher Brauchli
The Chosen One
Jim Britell
Misconceptions About Lobbying Representatives and Agencies
Ted Rall
Trump Gets Away with Stuff Because He Does
Mel Gurtov
Hong Kong, Xinjiang, and the Insecurity of China’s Leadership
Nicky Reid
Dennis Kucinich, Tulsi Gabbard and the Slow Death of the Democratic Delusion
Tom H. Hastings
Cross-Generational Power to Change
John Kendall Hawkins
1619: The Mighty Whitey Arrives
Julian Rose
Why I Don’t Have a Mobile Phone
David Yearsley
Parasitic Sounds
Elliot Sperber
Class War is Chemical War
December 05, 2019
Colin Todhunter
Don’t Look, Don’t See: Time for Honest Media Reporting on Impacts of Pesticides
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail