takes up KP's cause
Chief Minister of J & K state and his daughter Mehbooba Mufti,
the Vice- President of Peoples Democratic Party are on a whirl
winding tour of some of the flourishing states of the country
interacting with the politicians, businessmen and the who is who of
the Bollywood industry.
purpose behind the tour is to mobilise the investments and boost
industrial confidence in the state, they say so. The senior Mufti
has exhumed the confidence that his government has already received
unprecedented business proposals worth Rs 800 - 1,000 Crores since
he began industrial promotion drive in the state.
father daughter duo had to eat a humble pie when they commenced
business promo drive from bustling tinsel town of Mumbai. They made
little headway while inviting the corporate and the hospitality
industry but received a tongued bashing from some of the film
stalwarts having leanings towards the Kashmiri Pundits the
aborigines who are presently living outside the state and under the
most eloquent among them were Anupam Kher, Javeed Akhtar and Ashok
Pandit. Others who attended the meet were Yash Chopra, Subhash Ghai,
Pahlaj Nihalani, Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Shabana Azmi and Ramesh Sippy.
At a dinner organised in honour of the visiting dignitaries the
bigwigs from the film industry had a war of words with Mehbooba
Mufti over the resettlement of Kashmiri Pundits back in the valley.
“ informal “ chat ‘ between the leading personalities and the
PDP Vice-President turned into a soar exchange when Anupam Kher
raised the cause of the Kashmiri Pandit refugees. Anupam Kher with a
bleeding heart asked mufti to spend some time in the camps of
Kashmiri Pundits before seeking the Bollywood participation in
shooting their films in the Kashmir valley.
further urged mufti to salve the wounds of the Kashmiri pundits
before inviting us to shoot in the valley Mr Kher further ridiculed
the Mufti reminding him that his friend Satish Kaushik often jokes,
“we do not need to shoot in Kashmir because Kashmiris are shooting
Akhter hitting the hammer said to Mufti, “ You cannot bring peace
unless Kashmiri Pundits are resettled.” He further said that the
character of Kashmir is incomplete without the Pundits. In between
the words of war there had been intermittent interruptions by Anupam
Kher and the Ashok Pandit, both belonging to the Kashmiri Pandit
Vidhu Vinod Chopra the maker of Mission Kashmir also made some
reservation but they were regarding the corrupt practices indulged
by some of the officers in the tourism department.
took exception to Anupam Kher’s speech and criticised him for
making assumptions that Mufti’s were not sympathetic to the cause
of Kashmiri Pundits. She mollified Kher with the emotional words
that she had grown up with the Kashmiri Pundits and taken refuge in
their homes when she fought with her parents.
the attitude of Mufti Sayeed was toned down while commenting on the
issue of the Kashmiri Pandit refugees, saying, “ We must hang our
heads in shame for our own people have become homeless. We will not
rest till they come back. I am determined to give them back their
beginning to end during the interaction both the father and daughter
appeared uncomfortable as there was no end in sight over the
Kashmiri Pundits resettlement issue. The Mufti duo was on a happy
mission to sell the state to the corporate, hospitality industry and
the film personalities and would have no inkling that they would be
facing such hostile and uncomfortable questions.
fact is fact, before commencing their business and tourism promotion
Yatra, the father and daughter should have visited the
refugee camps inhabited by the Kashmiri Pundits in the Jammu city
and enquired about their sufferings.
father and daughter claim that they are the well wishers of the
KP’s and most concerned about them but the community members would
like to ask, “ what have they done for the refugees since they
took over the reins of the state.” They feel that the Mufti’s
have so far failed to take any concrete action towards resettlement
and solving immediate problems confronting them.
is Editor-in-Chief of the Weekly Kashur
an exclusive arrangement with Weekly Kashur Gazette,