Kashmir after Article 370

Lockdown in Kashmir
Lockdown in Kashmir

After 45 days of Kashmir lockdown; United Nations, European Union, UK have started doing lip service of expressing serious concern about the restrictions on the people of Jammu and Kashmir. The veteran leaders of Jammu and Kashmir, who have been supporting integration of Kashmir into India, have been detained under Public Safety Act, which is used for terrorists, separatists.

Hundreds of politicians of National Conference party and Peoples democratic party (with whom BJP stitched alliance to rule Jammu and Kashmir) are under house arrest and prominent leaders who have mass following have been detained under PSA.

There are numerous reports of thousands of young men being arrested so there is no backlash after the Modi government abrogated Article370. The unprecedented lockdown for over 45 days in Kashmir in 21st century is a crucial issue and needs worldwide attention not only because of the change of status of Jammu and Kashmir but the manner in which the decision has been forcefully imposed on the people of the Jammu and Kashmir by the Narendra Modi government.

One cannot imagine how a person feel handicap without phone or internet access.

Ahead of UN speech, now Prime Minister Narendra Modi suddenly woke up and September 19 said “we have to create a new paradise” and “hug each Kashmiri” as the region entered its 45th day of partial shutdown.

PM Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah, Ajit Doval and BJP leaders have been speaking in one voice supporting the Kashmir lockdown and giving a reason what the world powers are unable to read that the 50000 to 60,000 defence personnel has been deployed to avoid backlash. Clearly the Kashmiris are unable to show their resentment.

One must ponder, what terminology should be used if a democratically elected government started implementing policies in a dictatorial manner.

What will the United Nations call ‘the deliberate killing of a large group of people, especially those of a particular nation or ethnic group’ in the 21st century.It has been proven that if a person is forcibly isolated, then the person will die after a period of depression.

Jammu and Kashmir has been under lockdown since August 5, 2019 the government abrogated Article 370 of the Constitution to do away with the special status given to the state. Strict restrictions were put in place to clampdown on people’s movement while telephone and internet connections were snapped.

Amit Shah and Modi is buying time with the statements that the restrictions will be eased without mentioning any date.

The Kashmir Valley is basically was a tourist hub before Modi government decision and approximately 70% of the livelihood depends upon the tourists or the daily wages.

A communications blackout was imposed after the Indian government de-operationalised the article370 and degraded the status of Jammu and Kashmir from State to Union territories and snatched the little autonomy the Kashmiri people enjoyed.

The region’s most prominent politicians were detained without any reason and an unprecedented communications blackout and curfew was imposed on millions of residents depriving them from the basic fundamental right to move freely, talk and oppose if there is brutality.

On first Friday the security establishment allowed Muslims to offer their prayers but after their namaz they took out a large protest against the abrogation of Article 370 and police used tear gas and pellet guns to thwart the protests.

The the second Friday was Eid and since then Muslims are not allowed to offer prayers at the main Masjid but locality mosques so that the huge number of people are unable to gather and hold protest.

This is a systematic brutality on the people of certain religion to push them to do their religious rituals in a confined manner.

There have been numerous reports of people admitted to hospitals with pellet injuries after violent clashes on Saturday night, almost two weeks on from the Indian government’s abrupt decision to revoke Kashmir’s special status. Indian troops also used teargas, chilli grenades and pellets to disperse protesters. A 65-year-old man died after being admitted to the hospital with breathing difficulties, according to reports.

Another aspect that needs to be looked into is the inhuman approach of the Modi government by making Kashmir starve of communication and food. As Jammu and Kashmir was basically a tourism state and by asking tourists to leave the region, the business class was left with little money and the shikara owners are facing difficulty to survive and to crush people’s movement is to make them pauper and starve.

Sporadic protests have continued in Kashmir despite a security lockdown. Forces have responded with teargas and pellet guns and reports emerged that security men forcibly entered the homes and took jids and teenagers.

The government is using False propaganda as its weapon about normalcy in kashmir and enthusiasm among kashmiris and misleading narrative is being used that development is the major factor and that’s why the autonomy of the Kashmiris has been snatched.

The United Nations is entirely responsible when any authoritain government is formed in any country.

What is the purpose of world powers or institutions when million people are forced to remain in their houses and no foreign observers are there to check human rights violations nor they can communicate with the rest of the world.

Making people mentally ill by forcing some decision amounts to genocide:

While hearing writ petitions by Enakshi Ganguly and Shanta Sinha seeking release of children being detained illegally in Kashmir ever since special provisions of Article 370 were struck down, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi said he would visit Jammu and Kashmir, if needed, to check on allegations by a child rights activist that it was difficult accessing the High Court. Under Article 32 of the Constitution, which provides the right to constitutional remedies. Ganguly is an eminent child rights expert and Sinha was the first chairperson of the National Commission for Child Rights (NCPCR).

Some Muslims and Dalits will be murdered in the name of cow slaughter and some in Kashmir, section of people who criticize the manner in which the common man is muzzled is termed as anti-national and the conclusion is the country is left with small population who believe in Hindutva.

It is just to remind the people and world to keep on your guard.

By Arti Bali

Sr Journalist (International Affairs)

Disclaimer: The views expressed are personal. He can be reached at [email protected])

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