Monday, 23. August 2010
A Brief History of Jihad in Kashmir
Rajatarangini first begun by Kalhana and then continued by Jonraj records that Zul Qadir Khan (Dulchu?) was an early Turkish Tatar (or Tartar) who raided Kashmir with a savage horde of about 70000 barbarians. His plunder lasted eight months and when he was done, it left behind rivers of blood of thousands of massacred Hindus, expansive swathes of burnt crops, razed towns, and death and destruction. That one plunder turned the Paradise into a wasteland. Dulchu would’ve stayed on if not for the severe winter that foiled his plans. He took with him about 50000 kaffir men, women, and children to sell them in the lucrative slave markets in Turkistan (the Central Asian regions lying between Siberia on the north; Tibet, modern day Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran on the south; the Gobi Desert on the east; and the Caspian Sea on the west). However, a terrible blizzard ensued when he was crossing Devsar Pass and he perished with his entire army and captives. The place was subsequently known as Bata Sagan meaning “the death oven of Brahmins.”
This pretty much marks the beginning of the first genocide-cum-exodus of Kashmiri Brahmins or Pandits in their own homeland. This incredible site records seven such exoduses. Aside, it doesn’t make for easy reading. Line after line of cold prose records the horrid massacres of a peace-loving and innocent people who had attained collossal heights in culture, arts, and learning.
The kings of a state that had successfully nixed Mohammad Ghaznavid’s incursions twice so harshly that he didn’t cast his eyes in that direction ever again eventually succumbed to repeated attacks from barbaric Muslim armies. The decisive turn came with the Tibetan/Buddhist Rinchan Shah who converted to Islam so he could get the throne. He lasted only three years after which the Shamiri dynasty ruled for over 200 years. “Pure” Islam bared all its intolerant fangs under the fourth ruler of the dynasty, Sikander who was honoured with But-Shikan (iconoclast). Sikander bulldozed almost all Hindu temples in the state. He ordered the bodies of the slain Hindus to be thrown into the Dal lake not before cutting their sacred threads off their bodies and burning them. This yielded him a grand harvest of seven maunds (1 maund=37.3 Kgs) of sacred thread. Today, this place is known as But-mazar (or Batta Mazar) or grave of Brahmins. Kaffirs had two choice: to convert to Islam or die. Several Brahmin families fled to the Panchal range as refugees. A large percentage of present-day Kashmiri Pandits are their descendants.
The story of Kashmir ever since was an unending nightmare of atrocities on Hindus by successive Muslim rulers except for a brief respite by Akbar. Jahangir described the place as a “heaven on earth” and promptly did his bit to destroy Hindu temples and impose Jeziya. Shah Jahan was a worthy successor. Bernier, the historian describes that “the doors and pillars were found in some of the idol temples demolished by Shah Jehan and it is impossible to estimate their value.” He also lauded Kwaja Mam, an underling who looted Pandit Mahadeo’s house and set it afire. Aurangzeb, the role model of Indian secularism needs special mention. His reign saw the carefully-chosen appointment of 14 of the vilest and cruelest subedars and governors to Kashmir. Iftekar stands tallest among these. Thousands converted at the point of the sword and thousands still fled to Delhi and settled in today’s Sitaram Bazaar. Incidentally, an unconfirmed story has it that Jawaharlal Nehru’s wedding procession came all the way from Allahabad to Sitaram Bazaar to get his marriage solemnized. Meanwhile, the Aurangzeb-Iftekar duo had made life hell for Kashmir Pandits who sent a strong delegation to the Sikh Guru Tegh Bahadur. Moved by their plight, he met Aurangzeb who received him well but deceived him and in the end, had his throat slit. Guru Tegh Bahadur’s foul murder was also one of the major incidents that shook Aurangzeb’s empire really badly. Post-Aurangzeb, Ahamad Shah Abdali, the Afghan marauder quickly gobbled up whatever remained of the Mughal empire. But that only opened a new chapter of even worse atrocities on the Kashmir Pandits. Here’s a sample:
Mir Muquim Kanth and Khwaja Zahir Didamari, two prominent Muslim leaders of Kashmir, were responsible for inducing Ahmad Shah Abdali to invade Kashmir to bring it under his hegemony. Accepting the invitation, Abdali despatched a strong army of Afghans under Abdullah Khan Ishk Aqasi (1753) to reduce Kashmir. The local resistance offered by Qasim’s commander could not stand the Afghan onslaught and Ishk Aqasi established the rule of Afghans in Kashmir. He proved a scourge for the Kashmirians. He indulged in a spree of loot, plunder and murder to amass wealth. Writes PNK Bamzai, “Rude was the shock that the Kashmirians got when they witnessed the first acts of barbarity at the hands of their new masters.” The Afghans maintained their suzerainty over Kashmir for a period of sixty-seven years. They were absolutely ignorant, barbarous, cruel and inhuman. Their atrocities on the Kashmirian Hindus beat all previous records. They inflicted brutalities even on the Muslims. They plundered the houses of the rich as well as the poor. Anybody resisting or complaining would be straight-away put to sword. Their methods of torture and persecution were absolutely brutal and inhuman. Mir Muquim Kanth…harassed and persecuted the Kashmirian Hindus. He was hand in glove with Ishk Aqasi, who, in the wake of his victory, let loose a reign of terror. The houses of the Hindus were looted and pillaged. Huge fines were imposed on them. Any Hindu audacious enough not to pay the fines was brutally murdered. Having failed to withstand the brutal torture of the Afghans, the Kashmirian Hindus started migrating to safer zones in the neighbourhood of Kashmir. Mir Muquim Kanth proved to be their worst persecutor.
Peace returned in about 1819 when Diwan Mohakam Chand, a general of Maharaja Ranjit Singh decisively routed the Afghans and brought Kashmir under the sway of the Sikh empire. In other words, about one thousand hundred years had elapsed before Kashmir again witnessed some strong and real Hindu rule. After Ranjit Singh, it eventually passed on to the British.
And then we cut to the present.
A Pandit Screws His Own Homeland
This lengthy history was necessary because this precisely is what the perverts in the media, intellectuals, and academia want the nation to forget. There’s no real difference between the Kashmiri Pandits who fled to the Panchal range to escape Sikander’s atrocities and the Pandits of our time who live like refugees in their own homeland and are otherwise scattered across the globe. Equally, there’s no change in the ideology that motivated Sikander and continues to motivate Allah’s worthies in Kashmir and their counterparts across the border.
The facade behind the “complexities involved” in settling the Kashmir dispute is just an exercise in national deception because it hides an important fact: the all-pervasive cluelessness of the Pandit who screwed his own homeland. Towards the end of the first Indo-Pak war it was clear that Pakistan had been outnumbered, outgunned, and outmanoeuvred in every sector it fought Pakistan in. But the rose-sporting arch-angel of Peace who was out on a mission to prove to the world his nobility, called for a unilateral ceasefire. This Brown Sahib true to his nature, was a champion of several firsts. He was the first Prime Minister ever to call for a ceasefire in a war India would’ve won if he didn’t have the wet dream of seeing himself being crowned as the Champion of World Peace. And it is this that our worthies want to push under the carpet by spinning fantastic yarns. I don’t blame Maharaja Hari Singh’s deep distrust of Nehru. Here’s more reading material if you’re interested. And we know what’s happened ever since till the ’90s when Pakistan declared an open Jihad in Kashmir.
Kashmir began to re-bleed in a big way. Re-bleed because let’s not forget the 1000-plus years of Muslim rule. And what was common again? History revisited innocent Kashmiri Pandits. This time, the number was greater, the time span shorter. Within a decade, Kashmir was ethnically cleansed of Hindus. Five hundred thousand Hindus were killed and/or driven out because they were Hindus. Also recall that in the first Indo-Pak war, the Pakistani irregulars and soldiers alike killed large numbers of Hindus. The new century saw the extension of this Jihad to Jammu. In an old post I termed the Amarnath issue as a phenomenon out to steadily make Hindus the second-class citizens in India–Jihad again. Two years later, it’s only gotten worse. The question then to ask is: why didn’t we witness any Amarnath-like social disruption even five years ago? The obvious answer lies in changed demographics and/or accumulation of more power and influence by the Religion of Peace.
Proud Stonepelters and their Media Mollycoddlers
The media, which had maintained that “Kashmir belongs to India no matter what” has today changed the tune to “grant autonomy to Kashmir.” It’s no surprise that it toes the line of a certain secular party on all things of anti-national importance. The Indian media is blessed with great clairvoyance. It runs well-placed pieces and posts heart-rending pictures of the heartless Indian army gunning down innocent Kashmiri Muslims. A few weeks later, the Prime Minister announces that he’s ready to give autonomy to Kashmir.
From an angel of peace who created the Kashmir problem to a Puppet Prime Minister extraordinaire, we’ve come a full circle. And all it took for Dr.Gentle to issue that nauseous statement was several days of relentless stone-pelting by freedom-loving Kashmiri Muslim youth. A certain courageous paper known for Peeping Tom journalism ran a mile-long article that basically says the following:
* Kashmir has never had any Hindus
* We stand for pacifism and peace
* We hate to be called Indians
* Indian soldiers are basically poor villagers who languish under the Indian state as much as we do
And then another truth-pursuing channel invites a known India-baiter who threatens a Kashmiri Pandit live on TV. Meanwhile, the Kashmiri Pandits who take out protests in Delhi are caned by the cops whose chain of command finally ends with Dr. Gentle who has just gone on record announcing the possibility of granting autonomy to Kashmir. Wait. But nobody needs to talk about the Pandits–Kashmir is more or less completely Muslim. And so what Pakistan couldn’t achieve by force in 1947-48 is being given to it by India on a platter because Dr.Gentle hates stones.
Our well-fed journos and liberals are only too happy to lend their voice in support of giving away Kashmir. Tomorrow, it could be Kerala, which is showing tremendous promise of becoming the Kashmir of the South.
Plight of the Pandits
To be fair, all the hard work, organization and dogged determination of the Kashmiri Pandits are slowly paying off. For the first time, the protests in Delhi left a mark that (we hope) won’t be ignored. Media reports, independent reporters, bloggers, and the Internet are also pretty reliable indicators of the support that’s built up in their favour. But it’s not enough for a people who’ve pretty much been at the receiving end of untold misery for centuries. The only parallel I see is in the plight of the Jews till Israel was formed.
The Shape of Things to Come
Azad Kashmir then, is not about freedom for Kashmiris. It’s the freedom to make Kashmir an Islamic state, which will become a satellite state of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Granting autonomy to Kashmir in any form simply means the Indian state has accepted defeat at the feet of Pakistan’s Jihad machine. We already have a foretaste of the Islamic Republic of Kashmir.
Sikhs in the Kashmir Valley have received anonymous letters from Islamic militants asking them to either embrace Islam and join the protests against civilian killings or pack up and leave the Valley. The 60,000-strong Sikh community is the single largest minority group in the Valley.
There. The future dhimmis have already been identified. It doesn’t matter that the double-dealer Geelani has “reassured” the Sikhs. Only the secular party believes the likes of Geelani.
The Way Out
The past offers several solutions to current problems. Guru Tegh Bahadur is one such example who laid the foundation for the destruction of the Mughal empire. This man moved to tears by the plight of Kashmiri Pandits living far away invited death upon himself. The idea, old-fashioned and emotional by today’s standards is eternal. He had recognized the cultural unity of India in his own way and sacrificed himself to preserve that. That set off a wave of revolt starting with his own son and successor, Guru Gobind Singh, and then the Rajputs, Chattrasal, and Shivaji. Equally, Ranjit Singh who liberated Kashmir from bloodthirsty Muslim rulers was wise to realize the consequences of unchecked Muslim power. He never allowed any Muslim chieftain–big and small–to grow beyond his boots and as V Nalwa records, he kept a tight watch on the Muslim clergy. Mullahs were “not looked upon kindly as they were known to fan fanaticism.” [Hari Singh Nalwa - Champion of Khalsaji].
Which brings us back to the one word that’s been made dirty by the secular establishment: nationalism. It was the same word that gave us political freedom from the British. Surrendering Kashmir is surrendering that freedom. It’s still not too late.