Naseer A Ganai
One day in recent Assembly session Javid Mustafa Mir stood up and asked speaker of the Legislative Assembly Muhammad Akbar Lone about the fate of Trans-Islamic University bill passed by the Legislative Assembly last year. Mir informed Lone that Bill was sent to the Upper House and since then its whereabouts are not known. Mir asked the speaker that he should trace out the bill.
There and then the speaker promptly started ‘operation locate bill.’
The debate went on and finally it transpired that the bill was with the Chairman of the Legislative Council. He had to send it to the Joint Select Committee of both the Houses. But he has not.
The discussion went on and number of MLAs chipped in to put their point across. Finally Law and Parliamentary Minister Ali Muhammad Sagar stood up and informed the House that he would take up the matter with the Chairman of the Legislative Council and urge him to send the bill to Joint Select Committee of the House as soon as possible.
Now the matter has been resolved, the bill has been located and the Law Minister has given assurances that he would talk to the Chairman of the Legislative Council, announced Akbar Lone. But this didn’t satisfy Mir.
“This Assembly, this speaker, this law minister, that Council, that chairman are nothing. They have no value. The Minister should first ask Delhi whether they want this bill to be passed or not,” Mir said.
“Jao pehlay dili say pooch kay aao,” he shouted and left the Assembly.
This silenced both the law minister and the speaker. They perhaps know that Mir is right.
The story doesn’t end there. Delhi matters. And politicians know that Delhi matters. That is why they have two different speeches, one for Delhi and one for Srinagar. Here is an example.
During the Assembly session, national media was debating Sarpanch and Panch killings. One night a TV channel invited Muzaffer Hussain Baig, former Law Minister and senior PDP leader, for debate and discussion. During the debate Sajjad Lone stated that New Delhi has invested only in two families (Muftis and Abdullahs) in the State of Jammu and Kashmir and rest no one matters to it.
Sajjad seemed to be angry that why New Delhi didn’t invest on him. Irked by Sajjad’s comment, Baig in his baritone voice said, New Delhi has invested in the families because people follow them.
“Let us call spade a spade. Army and Police claim that there are only 100 militants. But they forget to tell us that more than 2000 militants are waiting for signal from their masters to cross over. This time they have found an opportunity to thwart electoral and constitutional process and have struck. They will do it again next time. It is not question of one family or other… Killers are killers, we must unite against them and use force of State and electoral politics to defeat them.” Baig said while giving his brief to Justice Arnob Gowsami.
Next day the same Baig addressed press conference at PDP headquarters in Srinagar and described militants as “freedom loving militants” and accused National Conference of killing Panches and Sarpanches.
Now let us move to the third and last story.
In the Assembly the Chief Minister Omar Abdullah took on BJP legislators and the Panthers Party MLA Harsh Dev Singh for raising the issue of reservation for Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes in the Block Development Council (BDC).
“What are they seeking reservation for? There was no reservation in Sarpanch posts (but it was provided). Where were they then…Do this drama outside (the Assembly). You are not well wishers of the SC and ST people. You are scared of the Panchayat empowerment, but this process will not stop, you may try as much as you want,” the Chief Minister said. Omar said that elections will be held. The notification was issued.
Ghulam Nabi Azad, the New Minister for Kashmir Affairs, issued statement against BDC elections. On Monday Omar was in plane on way to Srinagar when an emergency cabinet meeting was called. In a way Congress summoned him in the cabinet. And the cabinet decided to postpone elections.
Had he heard Javid Mustafa Mir and had he talked to Delhi before announcing elections, things would not have been so embarrassing for him today.
“Jao pehlay dili say pooch kay aao.”