Dr. Waleed Rasool
The pedestrian was chased by Gestapo C.I.D of Maharaja Hari Singh in Srinagar. He was arrested on 25th June 1931 at the dead of night from the houseboat of Naseem Bagh Srinagar. He was immediately charged under section 24 -A(treason) and 153 of the Ranbir penal code. Though to arrest, torture, and charge, even to kill the Kashmiris were routine under the Maharaja regime, however, this capture was unique in edifice and nature. The satire is that even he was not the direct victim of the Dogra tyranny. He was an ordinary employee to accompany his boss who used to come to Kashmir to chill from the highest degree of the summer heat, however, his presence in Srinagar as a routine visitor paved the way to change the course of history. His arrest shook the shekels of tyranny. His detention triggered the resentment of the majority in the Srinagar city and around. The unique characteristics of this detention were that he was nonnative and even can’t utter a single word in his native majority language i. e Kashmiri. He was neither affiliated with any political entity nor was having any social status vis-à-vis not freedom fighter. He visited the first time in Kashmir, even, he was not having any relatives in Kashmir. The saga behind this catch by Maharaja Intelligence agencies was that the nonnative abruptly and promptly started addressing masses in chaste Urdu. He was seen first time in Srinagar. He stood up without an invitation and began talking. He aroused the conscience of the Kashmiris to stand against the Dogra tyranny who used to insult their religion. Though he was none but he assured Kashmiris the support and solidarity from Muslims of India to fight for the vindication of honor. He warned the Dogra rulers that enough is enough. He cautioned that Muslims will give the befitting answer to Dogra’s oppression if he did not refrain from suppression of Kashmiri Muslims. This was a daring speech and it aroused the prolonged aviation of the Muslim crowd who were craving to listen to something substantive. He spoke spade a spade; “Muslim brethren! The time has now come when we should meet force by greater force to put to an end to tyrannies and brutalities to which you are subjected; no one will solve the issue of the disrespect to the Holley Quran to your satisfaction. You must rely upon your own strength and relentless and war against oppression. He pointed his finger towards the palace of Maharaja, He thundered, “Raise it to the ground” The man who became the hero of the Kashmir struggle by one speech and arrest was Mr. Qadeer hailing from Amroha UP. Few historians say he was from Manshera the present KPK of Pakistan. He was an employee of the English Army officer, Major Butt, from the Yorkshire regiment stationed in Peshawar. When his trial started in the trial court of the Sessions Judge Pandith Krishan lal Kichloo, thousands of the Kashmir rushed in court. It resulted in to shift in his trial from session court behind the giant and gigantic walls of Central Jail Srinagar in camera. The decision to hold an in-camera trial further augmented the resistance. The masses rushed to central Jail Srinagar in large crowed and demanded to be given an entry to watch the trial of Qadeer. Advocate Abdullah intervened and stopped the mob to enter the compound of the Jail. Mob accepted the advice of the defense lawyer who was advocating Mr. Qadeer’s trial. Masses left the premises’ and lined to pray outside the large ground for Zuhur prayer at 1 PM. In the meanwhile, Governor ordered police action. They arrested 5 people from the first line of the prayer on the charges of the anti-government slogans. This arrested created ripples among the masses. The police charged the people sitting to pray and the person who was assigned to give the Azaan was hit. Another person restarted the Azaan till 22 people got killed. Some say Azaan was completed however, few have mentioned that Azaan was not completed. The Dalal commission was set to enquire about this heinous genocide. The commission mentioned that 180 bullets were fired and 17 Kashmiri Muslims died on spot and 40 received serious injuries. The Hindu Daily Tribune 28th July 1931 admitted the loss of 21 Muslims. The English Doctor Wakefield published the autopsy report. He mentioned that a total of 22 people died and every person received a bullet in the chest. Any sacrifice, any word triggers when the iron is hot therefore the crests and troughs of any freedom movement are part of the struggle. The rise and fall are never predictable in conflict so is today’s situation in 2021 in IIoJK. The power structure and posture changes so is the current status quo of the IIoJK when absolute power of the present Modi-led regime is prevailing, However, the same was the situation in 85 years ago in Srinagar. 13th July 1931 has remarkable significance in the contemporary occupational history of IIoJK. It has a dialectical impact to change the posture and structure of the Quit Kashmir movement. The current quiet India movement is a continuity of the quiet Kashmir movement because Hindu Dogra handed over the state to mega oppressor India. Neither tyrant changed nor the tyranny but the interpretation of the Ranbir penal code changed in NIA, PSA, AFSPA under the democratic capsule of India to wad struggle of right to self-determination. The Qadeer’s are now caged in far-flung Jails of India without trial. The Azaan is still continuing in IIoJK followed by sacrifices.
(-Dr. Waleed Rasool(Ph.D.) IR is Director of the Institute of Multi-Track Dialogue, Development & Diplomatic Studies, He can be reached at [email protected])