Gupkar alliance always neglecting Jammu-based supporters
On August 4, 2019, owners of Kashmiri parties, votaries of Pakistan, independence, self-rule and greater autonomy, met at the Gupkar residence of former J&K CM Farooq Abdullah and made public what they called “Gupkar Declaration”. The Gupkar Declaration warned the Union Government that any move on its part to even tinker slightly with the Kashmiri “identity, autonomy and special status of the J&K State” will be resisted with full might. 18 politicians belonging to seven Kashmiri parties, including Sonia Congress, or what one may call them attended the meeting. They included Farooq Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti, Muzaffar Hussain Beg, Abdul Rehman Veeri, Muzaffar Shah, Sajjad Ghani Lone, Imran Reza Ansari, Abdul Ghani Vakeel, Taj Mohiuddin, M Y Tarigami, Omar Abdullah, Hassnain Masoodi, Mohammad Akbar Lone, Ali Mohammad Sagar, Nasir Sogami, Shah Faisal, Uzair Ronga, Suhail Bukhari and others – all from Kashmir and all belonging to one particular religious denomination.
Did Farooq Abdullah invite even one of his supporters from Jammu, even the provincial president? No. He invited his Jammu-based supporters for a meeting only on March 14, 2020, almost 8 months later. A 15-member delegation from Jammu did meet him at his Gupkar residence and returned. There was no report to the effect that anyone from Jammu either from Congress or NC opposed the seditious “Gupkar Declaration”.
Did any of their Jammu-based supporters take exception to the humiliation caused to them by their supreme leader? No.
The Gupkaris from Kashmir – Farooq Abdullah (NC and chairman of People’s Alliance of Gupkar Declaration [PAGD]), Mehbooba Mufti (PDP and vice-chairperson of PAGD), JKPCC chief G A Mir, M Y Tarigami (CPIM), Muzaffar Shah ANC) and Sajad Lone (PC) again met at the same place (Farooq’s Gupkar residence) on August 22, 2020, and issued a joint statement that the Gupkaris will “strive for the restoration of Articles 370 and 35A”. It’s obvious that none from Jammu, including any of the supporters of Farooq Abdullah, was there even for the sake of public consumption. Did any of the Jammu-based followers of Farooq Abdullah, Congress and other owners of Kashmiri parties condemn their masters or out-of-power monarchs? No.
The worst happened for the Jammu-based followers of Farooq Abdullah and followers of the owners of other Kashmiri parties on November 7, 2020. That day, the Gupkaris insulted and humiliated their Jammu-based supporters. What exactly happened that day? Seven Gupkaris from Kashmir – Farooq Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti, Omar Abdullah, M Y Tarigami, Javaid Mustafa Mir (J&K People’s Movement) and Sajad Lone – met at the Jammu’s Bathindi residence (built on the state and forest land and now attached by the Enforcement Directorate) of Farooq Abdullah to discuss the participation or no participation in the scheduled first-ever District Development Board elections in the UT of J&K. They decided to participate in the DDC polls. That the Gupkaris, especially Farooq Abdullah didn’t invite even one of his Jammu-based supporters, including even the provincial president, speaks for itself. Did any of their Jammu-based supporters take exception to the humiliation caused to them by their supreme leader? No.
Again on March 9, 2021, almost all Gupkaris from Kashmir, including Farooq Abdullah, met in Srinagar. This time, at the Gupkar residence of Mehbooba Mufti, the votary of Pakistan, and made an announcement after the meeting was over. Among other issues, their announcement called for undoing the “abrogation of Articles 35A” and termed what it called the “unconstitutional delimitation or trifurcation of the erstwhile state” as “an act of aggression”. Any Jammu-based follower of the Gupkaris from Kashmir was conspicuous by his/ her presence in the meeting.
But the story of rigorous exclusion of Jammu-based supporters of Gupkaris from Kashmir or their humiliation didn’t end just here. They were again shown their place. They were again told that they were no more than their slaves. The case in point is the June 22 decision of the Gupkaris from Kashmir to participate in the June 24 meeting called by PM Narendra Modi at his official residence on the political future of J&K. The meeting took place at the Gupkar residence of Farooq Abdullah. The Gupkaris – Farooq Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti, M Y Tarigami, Muzaffar Shah, Javaid Mustafa etc – made public their agenda they would try to force down the throat of the nation through the PM. Their agenda Articles 35A and 370, special status, full statehood, the reunification of Ladakh with J&K, talks with Pakistan and release of separatists and terrorists.
However, to say all this is not to suggest that Farooq Abdullah didn’t invite for discussion his Jammu-based supporters. He did invite. But he met them, including the provincial president, on June 23, a day after the decision had already been taken as far as their agenda and participation in the June 24 meeting with the PM was concerned.
And what the Jammu-based followers of Farooq Abdullah and Omar Abdullah said after meeting the chairman of the PAGD? They, inter-alia, said: “Our only stand is a single J&K, to maintain its unity and integrity and respecting the wishes and aspirations of the people of J&K…Dialogue and inclusiveness is the important and vital essence of democracy…The party leaders from Jammu have reposed faith in Farooq Abdullah as he is not only the president of the NC but also the tallest leader of J&K. He (Abdullah) has assured us that he will represent us and the people of J&K with his wisdom and he alone and alone can take this dialogue forward for the welfare of the people of J&K and anything that is for the welfare of the people of J&K…We are for singular J&K, have always stood for the unity of J&K and equitable justice to all regions and sub-regions of J&K…”
What does all this show? It shows the Jammu-based supporters of Gupkaris are what they are. They not only give their unflinching and unqualified support to the Gupkaris but also outrage the Jammu sentiment and seek to erode and destroy the age-old identity of Jammu province by singing the highly dangerous sub-regions song. This is not acceptable. They only help the Gupkaris to further destroy the already rather destroyed Jammu province socially, culturally, economically and politically and reduce the people of the province to the status of slaves. Their concepts of secularism, pluralism, diversity and institution of state are as atrocious as they are utterly unacceptable. It would be only desirable if they first settle in Kashmir on a permanent basis and then oppose the demand in Jammu for a separate Jammu State. They can’t play with and outrage the Jammu sentiment anymore.
1. Text in Blue points to additional data on the topic.
2. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of PGurus.
 J&K: Farooq Abdullah to Lead Gupkar Alliance, Mehbooba to Be Vice-Chairperson – Oct 25, 2020, The Wire