Burhan Wani is not my hero, Dr Shabir Choudhry

Are we moving towards fascism in Kashmir?

Yesterday I sent a post on Face book with the following text:

Burhan Wani is not my hero because he promoted gun culture, accession to Pakistan and division of Jammu Kashmir on religious lines.

Response of this was unexpected. It was unbelievable that some Muslims belonging to the Valley of Kashmir could stoop so low, and use vulgar language against another Muslim fellow citizen, which is only used in brothels. May be that kind of language is suitable for their homes, but not suitable in public.

Some of these people think by using this filthy language they are serving interest of Kashmir and Azadi. No. They are bringing out filth which is stored inside them. They are creating divisions and telling others that this is the kind of society we want to establish by use of guns and bombs where no one will be allowed to express his opinion.

I did not use any insulting word about Burhan Wani, and yet fanatics from the Valley of Kashmir have shown their true colour. They have shown their class and upbringing. Their message was: We will not allow any view which differs with their fanatic agenda. Some have used vulgar language against me, my wife, my mother and my daughters. If this is your level of tolerance that you do not allow anyone to express his views, then you are worse than Hitler.

Call me what suits your agenda, or what suits your political and financial masters, I for one, will oppose this kind of society where right of expression is not allowed. Where people with gun can impose their will and a foreign agenda on others. Fanatics of Kashmir and Taliban are two sides of the same coin. This kind of society is not suitable in 21st century. This cannot be called azadi.

Apologists of Kashmiri fanatics are no better than apologists of Taliban in Pakistan. Those who choose to remain quiet in fear that they don’t want to be abused by these fanatics will eventually suffer with their families when talibanisation of Kashmir takes place. Now is the time to face them and defeat them.

Struggle of Burhan Wani

In nutshell, Burhan Wani believed in militancy, that is why he was appointed Commander of Hib –Ul Mujahedeen. To him the struggle was jihad, which means it is a religious dispute; and he wanted to make Kashmir part of Pakistan.

I have always worked for united and independent Jammu and Kashmir with democratic and secular society, because to me it is not a religious struggle. People have a right to disagree with me, but they don’t have a right to abuse me and intimidate me.

Burhan Wani was a commander of Hizb – Ul Mujahedeen, a militant organisation set up by Pakistan, funded by Pakistan, armed by Pakistan, trained by Pakistan; and their Supreme Commander still lives Pakistan, and Pakistani occupied Jammu and Kashmir. He is also a Chairman of Jihad Council, which include Pakistani militant organisations like Lashkar e Tayiba, and Jaish e Mohammed. Hizb Ul Mujahedeen wants Jammu and Kashmir to become part of Pakistan.

I want the struggle to be peaceful, as gun has resulted in death and destruction. I don’t want to see more destruction and dead bodies. I don’t want to see more widows and orphans. However, those who promote gun culture and violence want all this. How can these people with such agenda be my heroes?

Despite that, if anyone wants to call Burhan Wani a hero, that is his choice. However, he has no right to impose his choice on others, either with the Pakistani gun, their propaganda machine or with their thuggery. Just imagine, if these fascists get in power in Jammu and Kashmir what will be the quality of life there.

Right expression under attack

During this tirade of fanatics against me on social media, majority of friends thought it was appropriate to remain quiet. However, some politely supported a right of expression; and some openly said they agreed with my views, and that Burhan Wani was not their hero. Most of posts are not worth reading or quoting. Some even send me inbox messages showing me their class and family culture.

One critic, Tariq Ahmad Dar said, ‘he is every body’s hero except Indian agents’.

Some others also said, those who do not regard Burhan Wani as a hero are agents of India.

These people are either advancing a foreign agenda; or are blinded with hatred. To them, anyone who differs with their view is an agent of India.

My understanding is that majority of people of Jammu province do not regard Burhan Wani a hero. Does that mean they are agents of India?

Majority of people of Ladakh do not regard Burhan Wani a hero. Does that mean they are agents of India? Similarly, majority of people of Gilgit Baltistan and Pakistani occupied Kashmir do not regard him as their hero. Does that mean all these people are agents of India?

What this means is, only these fanatics funded by ISI, Saudi Arabia are patriotic. They can sing praises for the occupier they like, and which feeds them, provides them guns and funds; and we cannot even tell facts, and expose the country that occupies us.

Those of you who say: ‘some misguided youths are emotional, and rest of the people are tolerant and believe in democratic society’ are very economic with truth; especially when they have decided to take side of these fascists or remain quiet.

Another critic, Waheed Khan wrote:  ‘He is the hero of Islamic world’.

Which Islamic world, the one which does not support Kashmir dispute? Saudi Arabia gave the highest civilian award to Modi. Is that to appreciate Burhan Wani or appreciate what Modi is doing?

In any case, did Burhan Wani liberate Al Aqsa Masjid that he has become hero of the Islamic world. You people live in a totally different and imaginary world.

Some people say Burhan Wani was not promoting gun culture. His most popular photo is with AK47. Please tell me did he want to promote peace with AK 47? Why don’t you accept what he was – a militant commander who wanted to fight the Indian army.

Let me tell you one more bitter fact. You can use vulgar language against me and others who show a mirror; but you WILL NOT win any independence with this approach. You will divide people of Jammu and Kashmir on communal and political lines. This will not suit citizens of Jammu and Kashmir; but it will surely serve interests of your political masters in Islamabad.

Writer is a political analyst, TV anchor and author of many books and booklets. Also he is Chairman South Asia Watch and Director Institute of Kashmir Affairs.

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