Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Home Opinions Is Shah Faesal Ajit Doval's asset? Unlikely, Swati Chaturvedi may be unwittingly helping the...

Is Shah Faesal Ajit Doval’s asset? Unlikely, Swati Chaturvedi may be unwittingly helping the central government

The MADmen trio (Modi-Amit Shah-Doval) has pressed the reset button J&K and pressed it hard

Also Read

K Bhattacharjee
Black Coffee Enthusiast. Post Graduate in Psychology. Bengali.

Ahead of abrogating Article 370 and Article 35A, the government had enforced strict restrictions to maintain peace in Jammu and Kashmir. Many political leaders from the state have been placed on detentions to prevent them from creating a ruckus. However, there are strange rumours emanating from Kashmir.

Abusive troll and alleged journalist, Swati Chaturvedi, said on Twitter that a certain ‘newbie’ in Kashmir politics is actually Ajit Doval’s man. According to her, he is part of the NSA’s bid to create a ‘managed opposition’.

People in their minds don’t take Chaturvedi seriously, given her track record, but similar sentiments have been echoed by others who are known to be more reasonable.

- article continues after ad - - article resumes -

Chaturvedi didn’t take any names but Pandita did say that leaders such as Shah Faesal would be propped up by the Centre. Thus, it appears, and we are only speculating here, that the person Chaturvedi calls Doval’s asset is none other than the former IAS officer. Rahul Pandita says that these people want to remain in detention for now, as in future they will be able to tell that they were in jail for the sake of Kashmir and ask for votes. These people will be acceptable to the Left “intellectuals”, who will join BJP, thereby suggesting that it is a grand strategy of BJP.

Why Faesal could be a Doval asset

Before we dismiss these assertions as ramblings of a delusional mind, we must admit that there are certain merits to the argument. In the long run, the Indian government would need to engineer a new political mainstream in Jammu & Kashmir. The Abdullahs and the Muftis have been held responsible for the dire straits the state is in by the central government, as has been evident from the statements made by Home Minister Shah and others of the ruling dispensation.

The Indian State would want to ensure that the political careers of the two families which have ruled the state thus far are destroyed. However, that will create a vacuum and that vacuum has to be filled by someone or some people. It’s only natural that the Indian State would want to fill that vacuum with individuals who are conducive to their interests.

Shah Faesal appears to fit the bill quite nicely. He is educated, outspoken, easy on the eyes and is rather meek. He may be lacking in charisma but it’s not that big of an issue. It can be easily fixed. Moreover, he is a marked departure from the stone-pelter variety of young men that are found in abundance in the valley. In short, he comes across as the guy who can convince people that you can win a war against the state with words.

- article continues after ad - - article resumes -

Most importantly, however, he is quite the antithesis to the Abdullahs and the Muftis. He hasn’t become popular due to his family, he is where he is due to his own efforts. Certain elements in the state machinery may have catapulted him far above where he deserves to be but nonetheless, it can’t be denied that he at least made some efforts.

Faesal’s public statements on the abrogation of Article 370 may be problematic but they are the sort of statements a newbie Kashmiri politician would be expected to make to garner public support during the initial phase of his career. Thus, if the decimation of the existing dynastic political order in Jammu & Kashmir was the objective, Faesal is a very potent bullet.

Reasons that make Faesal an unlikely candidate

As convenient as Faesal may be, there are very good arguments against this line of thought. For all the obvious stark differences between Faesal and the Abdullah-Mufti brand of politicians, making him the new political alternative in Jammu & Kashmir is still a soft-reset. And the actions of the government since the beginning of August have been anything but.

The MADmen trio (Modi-Amit Shah-Doval) has pressed the hard-reset button on J&K and pressed it hard. Henceforth, it appears unlikely that they will settle for Faesal whose brand of politics differs from his predecessors by only a few shades of grey after going through so much trouble.

- article continues after ad - - article resumes -

Faesal’s statements, too, have been far too radical to allow for an easy climb down. If he does back away from them, it will be perceived by residents of the state as a betrayal of trust. Therefore, he may not be as viable a candidate going forward.

Furthermore, Faesal doesn’t come alone. Shehla Rashid comes along with him as part of a package deal. How Shehla could be possibly accommodated into the scene given her conduct thus far is anybody’s guess.

Even so, there is one way they could both be accommodated. Faesal takes upon the mantle of the Abdullahs, Shehla fills in the spot vacated by Mehbooba Mufti and both of them are locked in a rigged battle against each other orchestrated by the central government.

The only problem is, the larger goal of the MADmen here would be to eliminate separatist politics from the scene. Substituting the Abdullahs and the Muftis with Faesal and Shehla respectively will only eliminate the erstwhile dynasties, it will not alter the dynamics of the Kashmiri political order itself. For the lengths the MADmen have gone to, it appears extremely unlikely that they will be satisfied if the existing political order itself is not eliminated altogether.

A Possible Subterfuge

An integral feature of the MADmen Doctrine has been the manner in which they have kept the enemies of the nation guessing. Article 370 was abolished in a matter of 3 or 4 days flat. It was a blitzkrieg that no one expected. A mind-numbing Confusion was the predominant feeling among the enemy camp. Thus, it’s quite evident, with them at the helm, expect the unexpected.

Political leaders, in any democracy, serve as the focal point for public anguish. They are a rallying point behind which people gather to further their own agenda. It’s as true for Kashmir as it is for any other region in the country, or for that matter, the world. Since Narendra Modi assumed the seat of Prime Minister in 2014, the Indian government’s strategy in J&K has been very sharp.

The Indian Army has eliminated every top terrorist in the valley behind which people could organize. It is indeed a sad state of affairs that in Kashmir, terrorists are a rallying point for people. In that sense, they are political players too, albeit with a gun in their hands. Thus, since the moment the NDA government came to power, there has been a concerted attempt to eliminate the rallying points for the people in the state with separatist inclinations.

Therefore, it appears only likely that the central government’s approach to politicians in the Valley will be the same. Of course, since Abdullahs and the Muftis and the Faesals are not armed terrorists, they cannot be eliminated with a gun. They can be eliminated from the political scene only by eliminating the source of their power: The goodwill of the Kashmiri people.

It is safe to say that there’s no better way to destroy the political career of a Kashmiri politician than by giving people the impression that he or she is a stooge of the central government. It is undeniable that Mehbooba Mufti suffered a huge loss of public support by allying with the BJP. Looking back, if the BJP’s goal was to make Mufti unpopular among her constituents, allying with her was an extremely smart move.

It could be said with a fair bit of certainty that the political prospects of Abdullahs and Muftis were destroyed with the abrogation of Article 370. For a long time, they had promised their constituents the skies only for their hopes to be smashed on the rocks. Thus, there doesn’t appear to be any way for the erstwhile dynasties to recover from this.

However, Shah Faesal could have proven to be the new political focal point in the near future. He, along with Shehla Rashid, could have fed the people of the state new myths to sustain their grand delusions. If this is how it was to pan out, only the personalities would have changed. The political order would have survived. And as we have said before, by pushing the hard-reset button on J&K, the MADmen trio have indicated that they want to fundamentally reform the political order in the state.

For this reason, the political career of Faesal would need to be destroyed. How does the central government achieve it? By giving people the impression that Faesal, and by extension, Shehla, are stooges planted by Doval himself, the MADmen are essentially destroying their political careers even before it truly began. Thereby, eliminating rallying points of the residents of the state.

Why Subterfuge appears more likely

For a movement to be successful, it needs a face. The masses find it much easier to associate themselves with specific individuals rather than abstract ideals. It is exactly why Narendra Modi was essential for the success of the Hindutva movement in recent years. Abstract ideals could not unite Hindus of all castes and creed under a single banner, it needed Narendra Modi for it.

Hindutva is an abstract concept, a man is a concrete. You can see a man, hear him, he has a story that the masses can relate to, he is certainly more ‘real’ than abstract concepts. A man can make promises and fulfil them. A man is capable of action, abstract ideals can only make abstract promises. Secularism has failed spectacularly in India not because the idea itself has failed, it has failed because the people swearing by the word, from Jawaharlal Nehru to Rahul Gandhi, have been extraordinary charlatans.

Of course, secularism is a remarkably bad idea but a bad idea can still be sold if the salesmen are exceptionally gifted individuals. There are obviously numerous other factors involved but it’s a fair assessment based on a single metric. In short, a bad idea can still be sold and it takes hugely talented men to sell a bad idea but a good idea can be very well sold by ordinary individuals. The difference between a bad idea and good is that one requires a great deal of intellect to justify it while the other only requires common sense. However, that is a discussion for another time.

To cut to the heart of the matter, the Kashmiri separatist movement too requires able individuals for it to be successful. If there are no able individuals in the fray to lead the masses, the movement will wither away in due course of time. Therefore, it’s essential that leaders are not allowed to emerge at this moment in time for the MADmen doctrine to succeed in J&K.

The hard-reset would entail that at a certain point of time in the future, a new breed of politicians will emerge who will not toe the separatist line. The most they will demand is the restoration of J&K’s statehood. Depending on the prevailing circumstances, the central government could then decide on the matter. But for a new breed of politicians to emerge, who will essentially represent a new political order, the existing one needs to be destroyed in its entirety. And as such, the political careers of Faesal and Rashid needs to be destroyed as well.

Who is playing into the MADmen trio’s hands? Shah Faesal or Swati Chaturvedi?

At this moment in time, it does appear more likely that it is Swati Chaturvedi who is unwittingly playing into the MADmen trio’s hands. By sowing the seeds of division in the minds of the people of J&K regarding Faesal’s loyalty, Chaturvedi and others are helping destroy the goodwill Faesal supposedly enjoys in the state as of now. Swati Chaturvedi may be loathed to admit it but it does seem that she has been pwned.

  Support Us  

Whether NDTV or 'The Wire', they never have to worry about funds. In name of saving democracy, they get money from various sources. We need your support to fight them. Please contribute whatever you can afford

Trending now

K Bhattacharjee
Black Coffee Enthusiast. Post Graduate in Psychology. Bengali.

25 lakh migrant workers returned to state so far amidst Coronavirus pandemic: UP CM Yogi Adityanath

The Yogi Adityanath govt has been working relentlessly to provide employment and various other facilities to the migrant workers who have returned to the state amidst the nationwide lockdown

UP: Police books over two dozen people for gathering in large groups to offer Eid namaz in a Muzaffarnagar Mosque

Defying administration's repeated appeals, a raft of Muslims congregated at the mosque in Kajian colony in Muzaffarnagar to offer prayers on the occasion of Eid-al-Fitr

Styrene gas tragedy: LG Polymers was warned over toxic styrene levels, green ministry red flags delay by Andhra govt: Report

A major chemical leak from the LG Polymers plant near Visakhapatnam impacted villages in a five-km radius

Coronavirus outbreak: Congress demands a fresh Union Budget, claims the pandemic demands increased spending by the centre

Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram in his column has argued that the present scenario has rendered the Union Budget declared in February irrelevant

England: Pakistani arrested for vandalising Guru Arjan Dev Gurdwara, note on Kashmir posted in the Gurdwara recovered

In the attack which took place on May 25 morning at Guru Arjan Dev Gurdwara in Derby, England, the unidentified man had broken the Gurudwara's windows

China to evacuate its citizens from India amidst pandemic and rising border tensions: Here are the details of the press release

A notice has been published on the Chinese embassy website which states that students, tourists and businessmen who have been stranded in India will be allowed to fly back to China on special flights

Recently Popular

Here is the truth about the fake TIME magazine cover page shared by Ravish Kumar and subsequently deleted

His legendary capacity to peddle fake news was once again exposed when Ravish Kumar shared a fake TIME magazine cover in a bid to malign PM Modi.

Pinjra Tod ‘activist’ arrested for inciting Delhi riots was a columnist with The Wire and Newslaundry

Delhi police arrested two women, Natasha Narwal, who was also a columnist with The Wire and Devangna Kalita for inciting the anti-Hindu Delhi riots

Mumbai Police issues prohibitory order, to take action against messages on social media: Here is how it curbs criticism against Uddhav Govt

For MLA Aaditya Thackeray too, the most worrying aspect of the pandemic in Maharashtra is the ‘hate on social media'

Maharashtra: After Palghar lynching, two Sadhus brutally killed inside ashram in Nanded

The bodies of the Sadhus were found in their ashram in Maharashtra's Nanded late on Saturday night

Delhi: Tanker operators say AAP MLA Prakash Jarwal collected bribes up to Rs 60 lakhs a month

The accusations of graft against AAP MLA Prakash Jarwal came to light after a water tanker owner, Dr Rajendra Singh, committed suicide alleging harassment for payment from the AAP MLA and his aide Kapil Nagar

Connect with us