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Ravings, Rantings and Despair of the PDP
A rejoinder to Naeem Akhtar's 'Of a lamb, ox and camel'
By Tanvir Sadiq
Psychology is a very interesting discipline. Even more interesting is psychoanalysis. The former refers to the study and understanding of mental behaviors of either groups or individuals and the latter is the study and penetration of the human psyche and then developing a therapy for the disorders that a patient suffers from. Some terms that these disciplines have yielded are very germane and relevant to quotidian life but have a more acute resonance when a group is suffering from delusions.

All this has relevance to an outfit that is a political wannabe and whose delusions of being a player in the politics of the state were recently dashed by the legislative council elections of the Panchayats. The reference is to the People's Democratic Party (PDP). The vainglorious party of vested interests and power hungry people is almost a spent force in the politics of the state. The recent council elections validated this and the ravings, rantings of its leadership reinforce this structural decline and oblivion of this party.

Recently Mr. Naeem Akhtar, in the capacity of PDP's Spokesperson in an op-ed, carried by the Kashmir Times (18-12-2012) displays all the attributes mentioned above. The problem with this party in general is that everyone is overwhelming each other, the glaring example would be people like Mehbooba Mufti, Muzaffar Beig and others. The reasons are obvious and bear repetition here. This party, is structurally unable to come to terms with the resounding verdict of the people in the LC elections. The party senses doom, disintegration and cannot countenance the inevitable, hence the reaction. The party, through its spokesperson, projects what is essentially its own condition.

In the interests of scholasticism, a few words that serve as a rejoinder to Nayeem Akthar are in order here. Mr. Akhtar tries to stir and create doubt in the minds of people by asking what caused 1953? There are the deeper and profounder reasons for their rant. The prosaic or the superficial explanation is that the PDP spokesperson, reflecting the fears of his party, is jittery about the potential alliance between the National Conference and the Congress and is trying to create doubt about the NC in the minds of people.

The National Conference is not a party; it is a movement whose nature and genesis harks back to a very important era of Kashmiri history. This party led by Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah was and is indelibly stamped on the hearts of the people of the state. What more can be testimony to this than the fact that the party arose, phoenix like from the detritus of war and conflict in the state? This is not a rhetorical question but the hard reality of the party, the state and its history. It is led by a young, dynamic leader who is the flag bearer of this proud history and legacy. Omar Abdullah, represents not only this legacy but embodies the aspirations and hopes of all sections of society.

During the times of Sheikh Sahib and Nehru, India was defined by a rather anomalous condition termed as a one party democracy. The hegemony of the Congress party was deep and profound so much so that any confrontation between the states and the Centre was articulated in the idiom of a puny regional party defying the Congress; not the Centre. Sheikh Sahib not only maintained his moral and ethical stance but also took cudgels on behalf of Kashmiris against this condition. It was political god fathers of Mufti who whispered malicious rumours into Delhi's ears and created fissures and suspicion.

The one party democracy condition has now given way to fragmentation of the Indian polity on account of structural forces. In this condition, coalition politics is the name of the game. How the inference drawn by Akhtar Sahib that this reflects decline of the NC is a strange and imaginary inference. The PDP leadership suffers from a memory lapse. Was not the PDP in a coalition when it tasted what has been the real drive for his party and its leadership: power? This knowledge is in the public domain and needs no further elaboration.

Insofar as the accusation of Omar Sahib being a governance proxy is concerned, this is a bizarre and gratuitous accusation. Omar Abdullah leads a party that has deep rooted connections to the people and society of the state. He is where he is because he has earned it. Mr. Abdullah does not believe in vulgar publicity and self promotion.

The final appreciation of the man, Omar Abdullah, the government and the party he leads and the verdict will be delivered in 2014- a date that will serve as the obituary for the PDP. Frustration, bitterness, and bottled up rage and disguising this as a critique is a reflection of the deeper and structural malaise that has gripped the PDP. All we can say is that the party collectively mull over its raison d'être and sit collectively on the psychiatrists couch for a vigorous psychoanalytical session. This may enable it to put into perspective its artificiality and it will appreciate the fact that it has no future.

*(Tanvir Sadiq is the Spokesman of the J&K National Conference)
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News Updated at : Saturday, December 22, 2012
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