Bharat ko de ragda is the name of a song and was written by the man in the centre of the controversy, Masarat Alam. While many may argue that his release was legally permissible, it is to be seen what the after effects of this action would be.
There can be only two outcomes from the release of Alam. Either he brings together the Hurriyat Conference and ensures that peace talks resume or he goes back to doing what he did in the past- fan anti India sentiments.
Bharat ko de ragda
Masarat Alam's anti India sentiments are well known to all. He is considered second only to Syed Geelani when it comes to fanning anti India sentiments. His song Bharat ko de ragda which means Stamp India out and also the messages that he had sent out during the various protests are all indications that he fanned an anti India sentiment.
Alam is also famous for painting the walls of Kashmir with anti India messages and the most popular one was Go India Go. It is almost 20 years now since he has been undertaking this anti India tirade and over the years he has grown from strength to strength.
The 42 year old Alam was first arrested when he was 20 as he had declared open support to the armed struggle of 1989 against India. That was the first time that the Public Safety Act was slapped on him and he had remained in jail till 1996.
The rise of Masarat Alam
An order by the Deputy Commissioner of Sringar which slapped the Public Safety Act against him read, " the hardline separatist has anti India sentiment in his blood." This was an order that was issued in the month of June 2014 in a bid to stop street violence that occurred in the years 2008 and 2010.
After his release in the year 1996 he joined the Muslim League and was very open in his views that Kashmir should be part of Pakistan. Since then there have been at least 27 cases slapped against him which include attempt to murder and also sedition.
Part of the Hurriyat he raised the Amarnath land issue for the first time in the year 2008. He had opposed tooth and nail the decision to grant forest land for the Amarnath pilgrimage.
He was immediately arrested and then released in 2010. The year 2009 witnessed massive street protests in the Valley. The protests continued the next year and after his release from jail, he only joined the movement and fanned the sentiments against India further.
This was the same time that he had penned the song Bharat ko de ragda. The street protests resulted in over 110 deaths. The protests had left India extremely worried as it was seen as a situation going back to square one after all the efforts that were put in to restore peace.
Can he bring the Hurriyat together?
None of us know what Alam is thinking. Has be become pro India? The 2014 order of the Deputy Commissioner however does not suggest that. For the government of Jammu and Kashmir to succeed in ensuring peace in the Valley it would require a herculean effort to bring all the factions of the Hurriyat together.
The Hurriyat is a divided house and this has resulted in a failure to ensure peace. Alam it is said can bring the Hurriyat together. However that would depend on what his mentor and idol Geelani would have to say.
The PDP believes that the release of Alam could be a step forward in uniting the Hurriyat. The armed forces and the Intelligence Bureau however say that it would require a mammoth effort to bring them together and they doubt if Alam is capable of doing that.
The release of Alam is like walking on thin ice. There is an attempt being made from across the border to fan anti India sentiments and get the Kashmir struggle going all over again. Many separatists who live on the pay rolls of Pakistan would try and hamper the efforts being made by India to bring about a quietus in Kashmir.
Will Alam join the anti India tirade or not? Only time will tell.