News Kashmir Exclusive
Latest controversial step of establishing Sanik colony is generating much heated debate and anguish in Kashmir. According to reports, 173 kanals (21 acres) of land have been identified for the “Sainik Colony (soldiers colony), where serving and retired army personnel will be allotted plots. About 6,000 serving and retired soldiers have so far applied for plots at the colony, proposed on state land behind the Friends Enclave near the main gate of Srinagar Airport.
Both Mainstream as well as separatist are expressing angst against reported move of the J&K Government to establish Sainik colony for ex-service men from Army and other force personnel in central Kashmir’s Budgam district.
Senior Hurriyat (M) leader Javaid Ahmad Mir, while taking to News Kashmir stated –“it is a ploy to destroy the unique demography and culture of Kashmir. The reason and logic of Kashmir will not allow establishment of Sanik Colony as it is a simply a fascist measure. In one or other way the oppressive state wants to further subjugate the masses of Kashmir by establishing such Sanik Colony. If god forbidden such steps would be taken by the support of current ruling dispensation the people of Kashmir will resist with tooth and nail. Since Kashmir is a disputed territory, any such steps will be against the International laws therefore world forums including United Nations are appealed to intervene in the matter.”
Ruling party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) recently stated that not a single non-local soldier working or retired from Indian Army would be allowed to settle in ‘Sanik Colony’ reportedly coming up at Humhama in the outskirts of Srinagar city. “If ever a colony will come up, only those soldiers and ex-servicemen will settle there who will be the permanent residents of Jammu and Kashmir. It will be totally against the spirit of special status of Jammu and Kashmir if any non-local soldier will be allowed to settle their permanently,” the PDP spokesperson Dr Mehboob Beigh told CNS.
Civil society is also aghast over the move .Mohammad Yasin Malik, a prominent Human rights activist while speaking to News Kashmir on the proposed setting of Sanik Colony stated – ” The moves like Sanik Colony seem nothing but steps aimed at colonization of Kashmir .We will with full tooth and nail oppose this move as this is an act of aggression against our nativity and our sensibilities .All efforts are being made to increase the suffocation and pain of Kashmir but let us affirm that we the people of Kashmir will never allow such step of aggression to take pragmatic shape.
Meanwhie, Hurriyat (G) Chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani while terming the attitude of the Mufti government on this sensitive issue as ambiguous and suspicious stated that the Indian defense minister Manohar Parrikar had said that he had sent directions to the state government in Srinagar on July 16 for taking appropriate action in the allotment of the state land to the former Indian army personals but Mufti Sayeed government is still to say anything about that order and nor has he refuted or supported it.
Geelani stated-“Mufti should clear the stand of the state government on this sensitive issue before the general public that are they going to accept this unconstitutional order of the Indian defense minister or will they this time protect the state constitution. Permanent settlement of former Indian army personals on this land is an attempt to harm the special status and disputed nature of Jammu & Kashmir and the people of the state will not allow any such plan to succeed.”
Political temperatures are definitely running high over the setting of Sanik Colony in Kashmir.