Syed Mir Qasim

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Syed Mir Qasim (1921 - 12 December 2004) was the Chief Minister of Kashmir from 1971 to 1975.

Syed Mir Qasim's political career first began during India's freedom struggle against Britain, when he became a leader of the non-sectarian, pro-democracy Quit Kashmir political movement. His advocacy against monarchical rule resulted in his imprisonment as a political prisoner by the Maharaja of Kashmir Hari Singh.

After India's independence, Syed Mir Qasim drafted the Kashmiri constitution and went on to serve in various State and Union positions. He is credited for having established the Indian National Congress (also known as the Congress Party and abbreviated INC) in Kashmir. Syed Mir Qasim most famously offered to resign from the office of Chief Minister in order to encourage and institutionalize the landmark Indira Gandhi-Sheikh Abdullah Accord in 1975.

In his autobiography, My Life and Times,[1] published in September 1992, by South Asia Books, he provides interesting historical detail on the struggle of Kashmiris to throw off the yoke of monarchy in the princely state through the Quit Kashmir movement, as well as background on the issue of accession to India rather than choosing to join Pakistan.

Syed Mir Qasim suddenly died in an ambulance near India Gate in New Delhi on 12 December 2004 at the age of 83, thirty-three years to the date from when he became Chief Minister in 1971. In accordance with his wishes, he was buried in the remote village of his birth, Dooru in Kashmir. Notably, given the general level of violent upheaval in Kashmir, his funeral was attended by thousands without incident. He was posthumously awarded the Padma Bhushan, India's third highest civilian award by Indian President APJ Abdul Kalam in 2005.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ https://www.amazon.com/My-Life-Times-Mir-Qasim/dp/8170233550
  2. ^ "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Retrieved 21 July 2015.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Ghulam Mohammed Sadiq
Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir
1971–1975
Succeeded by
Sheikh Abdullah