24 November, 2020

A Pilgrimage To The Shrine Of Reason

The cascading impact of the land transfer issue calls for astute handling

A Pilgrimage To The Shrine Of Reason
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
Only two weeks ago, both North and South Block were congratulating themselves on 'solving' the Kashmir problem. Cross-border infiltration was at an all-time low, tourist arrivals were breaking records, and the political system was gearing itself for the coming election in October. All soundings showed that the turnout in the Valley was going to be high—if not the 71 per cent of 1983 and 72 per cent of 1977 then certainly far higher than the 30 per cent of 2002.

New Delhi refused to forgive the Hurriyat Conference for boycotting the round table discussions with the prime minister and it was staring at political irrelevance. The party decided to boycott the election, but New Delhi believed this was because the Hurriyat had been left with no platform from which to advocate rejection of the polls. Most of the suggestions that their leaders had aired from time to time as a possible basis for a reconciliation between Kashmir nationalists and Delhi had been appropriated by the National Conference and PDP.

The Hurriyat, in any case, was at...
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