Restore peace in Jammu and Kashmir

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It is distressing that Kashmir is always on the boil. The issue of Kashmir is a chronic one, and has festered nearly three quarters of a century. Those familiar with Kashmir’s history would be aware that violence in Jammu and Kashmir generally tends to come in “waves”. The centre and state governments have been deliberately silent till the situation boil and burst. There is an urgent need to study the Kashmir issue in depth and provide a lasting solution as it is one the major problem faced by India. It has been a bone of contention between India and Pakistan. Don’t we think that the issue should be solved with open mind? Violence makes news. But, a vast majority of Kashmiri residents are too busy to make their living. The continuing unrest reveals the fact that despite the promises the PDP made before coming to power last year—that it would restore democracy and end human-rights violation—there is little it can do to effect real change in the lives of the valley’s youth.

One’s imagination failed to understand that Kashmir has been boiling with discontent for years and there has been no effort to assess the problem. Has anyone spared a minute to give a thought to the mental suffering and the pressure faced by the policemen or the armed forces, which has become their daily routine these days? Unless there is a political process to address the aspirations, the cycle of violence will never abate.

Problems are due to the insincere and inept polity. Unrest in Kashmir reveals the failures of the ruling People’s Democratic Party. The killings reveal the fact that the real power in Kashmir lay not with the state’s elected government, but with the security forces. To be fair to the security forces, they have faced exceptional ferocity from groups of young people. Slogans are becoming the main instigators of violence even though sloganeering has been a part of long cherished history of the world. The security forces do not appear to be following standard operating procedure. Whenever riot occurs, there are plenty of ways in which the situation can be dealt with. The country needs a tough law to curb the misuse of information technology. India always thought that peace can be restored sincerely by addressing the grievances of all groups. India must take its cue from those instances and solve the Kashmiri conundrum once and for all. Tourism is main business of Jammu & Kashmir, which provides employment opportunities to local residents. This business can only flourish if there is prevalence of peace and tranquility.

Countries across the world must unite to fight terror so that the innocent people of Kashmir can leave alone in peace and not in pieces. It should also be the responsibility of every citizen to cooperate with the government and armed forces for eliminating terror in Jammu & Kashmir. Good governance and right policy will address the problem to a large extent.

Vinod Chandrashekhar Dixit

(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)