By: Anmol Gupta
Fifteenth of August has been and shall always remain a red letter day for all Indians. After all, following centuries of servitude it was on this glorious day that the dream of an India where Indians were the masters of their own destiny fructified. While our country gained freedom and every Indian rejoiced, the Dogra rule was overthrown and the reins of ‘Jammu’ were handed over to Kashmir & Kashmiris. And, thus began a new subjugation for the people of Jammu. One can be quite sure that if Maharaja Gulab Singh had any inkling that his purchase of Kashmir from the British (the treaty of Amritsar, 1846) and the subsequent creation of this artificial state of Jammu and Kashmir will eventually lead to the suppression of his future generations, he may have had second thoughts about his conquest.
Going against the basic principles of Democracy, Jammu has been given an unfair representation in the state assembly, thereby ensuring the permanent dominance of a Kashmir Centric Government in the state. Even otherwise, the treatment meted out to Jammu by every successive government in the state is comparable to that offered to the colonies of Imperialist states of the yesteryear’s. Just like the British, the Portuguese or the French squeezed revenues out of their colonies, the Kashmiris are guilty of diverting funds generated out of Jammu to Kashmir. As in the British times when most of the important officials in India were British, in Jammu one finds the bureaucracy full of Kashmiris with some estimates pointing that over 70% of the employees of the J&K Govt belong to the Kashmir region. The irony does not end there, for like the English who ruled over a multi-ethnic India, the Kashmiris dominate the multi-ethnic region of Jammu.