New Electoral Rolls of J@K will Help Integration of the State

The Government of Jammu and Kashmir must be congratulated for two bold recent decisions after the abrogation of Articles 370 and 35 A from the Constitution of India. One is to make Hindi the official language of the state apart from Urdu and the second is to grant voting rights to nearly 25 lakh people, who have been living there for decades together but were deprived of their legitimate rights.
This gerrymandering and the delimitation of the state along with the new electoral rolls will go a long way in the integration of Jammu and Kashmir with the rest of India. Was it not an insult to lakhs of refugees who came from Pakistan and settled down in Jammu and Kashmir but were denied voting rights? So much so, that thousands of Valmikis, who gave everything in the service of J@K for generations did not have voting rights for 75 years. Sikhs, who came from the western side of the border and were domiciled in the state yet were denied their voting rights.
The law says that anybody who has lived for six months at any place would be entitled to get his /her name registered on the voters’ list. This is how any employee who has been working in Assam for more than six would have voting rights in the state but if he/she is transferred to Kerala or any other state and stays there for six months would be entitled to get his/her name registered in the voters’ list. But it was a different story in J@K because of the obnoxious Articles 570 and 35 A. Is it not strange that those who went from other parts of the country to the J@K and worked for it were not welcome to participate in the electoral democracy of the state?
It is well known that Dr Ambedkar was dead against the inclusion of Article 370 in the constitution of India. It is a part of the written history that when Sheikh Abdulla at the instance of Pandit Nehru went to meet Dr Ambedkar and pleaded for the inclusion of Article 370 in the constitution, he is reported to have told him ( Sheikh Abdulla) that how could it be possible that the people of the whole country should pay taxes to be utilised in J@K and yet they do not have any say in the affairs of the State? The Indian army was there in the J@K but they cannot be allowed to have any sense of belonging to the State. This is no way to make the State an inalienable part of India. Sheikh Abdulla was speechless but with the support of Pandit ji, he had his say.
Think of the situation when people coming from different of the country to live in Delhi do not have voting rights. By this logic, nobody can settle down in other parts of the country. Must it be mentioned here that comparatively in a small place like Varanasi, thousands of Biharis, Bengals, Odia, Marathis, Gujratis, Tamilians, Malayalis, Assamese and Telugus have got the same rights as are available to the locals and nobody resents? In fact, it is a matter of pride for every citizen that he/she can settle down in any part of the country and can enjoy the same privileges as are available to other locals. This is the best way to have the emotional and psychological integration of the country. Therefore, the Modi government has done splendid work for the real unification of Jammu and Kashmir with the rest of the country. The Kashmiris should rejoice over this remarkable feat as till now the people from the rest of the country have been treated only as tourists in the State.