By Vikram Nag
Jammu and Kashmir. Search it in dictionaries and thesaurus, it comes as a synonym to Beauty. The world calls it crown of India. Landscapes in the state are heavens. Ladakh is a mystical, it mesmerizes. Kashmir is serene, a calmness therapy. Jammu is Holy-City of temples. World comes here in pursuit of their Wanderlust. Being touristy is a lifestyle here.
And Jammu off late has seen the elation of this touristy lifestyle to new obnoxious levels.
There is a new type of tourism sprawling in Jammu. A tourism where Jammuties are visiting their own homes for a holiday. Visiting their own homes once or twice a year to spend few days of experiencing a laid-back city where the pace of life comes to a halt.
The other day I was visiting my Friend in one of the best residential areas in Jammu city. While driving around with him, he remarked, “This Locality is a Posh Old age home. Look around all these magnanimous Bungalows with big cars parked inside. Only above 60 people live here. Kids have gone to Metropolitan cities for studies, Jobs, careers. Bas budhe log hi hain sab idhar. ”
And this is not the story of this locality only. This is the story of every other home in Jammu.
Though Migration is a universal phenomenon but it changes its character when it associates itself with J&K. What is happening in Jammu division is a characteristic of rural migration. One way migration is a characteristic of backward rural areas. But this to happen on such a large scale is very disturbing.
Article 370 in combination with other land laws and state citizenship clauses create such mazes that force this one way migration out of state. Land laws are a barrier for foreign business establishments to work in J&k and hence creating zero incentives for employment generation.
Employment Sources are the biggest factor influencing the demography of a place and it can be broadly segregated in two categories.
The Corporate entrepreneurship in J&K is as big as the chances of finding life on Pluto. Ok getting it straight, its zero! J&K does not have any bit of that metropolitan employment opportunity where MNCs or private entrepreneurs can flourish and offer livelihood opportunities. This zeroes out the attraction power of the state for young educated youth from outside. More devastatingly, it means that state’s capacity of retaining the state youth in J&K is in negative. Because every day we are losing our educated minds to other states.
Employment opportunities in state are limited only to the government jobs. But this is also only a retention provision and not an attraction source since only residents of J&K can get a state-govt job here due to state subject clause. However, even this sector has started failing to retain the state youth because in the last few years owing to the introduction of New recruitment policy which is in itself a ‘Hidden message’ for state citizens to look for avenues out of state. New recruitment policy is a push to drive educated masses out of state. It is a mass Exodus policy.