Kashmir Beyond Article 370 & AFSPA

Kashmir Beyond Article 370 & AFSPA

Adfar Shah Obviously a new hope for the return of normalcy seems there in Kashmir but not before the government is formed. Although until 2005 the peace deficit valley witnessed a slow decline in the culture of violence however it picked up later and by the time 2014 ended, the magnitude of support from Pakistan, the intensity of cross border infiltration, the presence of uncertainty in valley, the number of violent attacks and even the type of targets that extremists usually executed, has softened to a great extent minus the growing radicalization of vulnerable youth. In between the years 2008 to 2010, there were many aberrations in the march towards peace; however, when the disturbances are seen from the democratic prism, political defiance or intifada are very well justified. Had it not been for the significant loss of one hundred and twenty lives as a result of actions by security forces, these events could have been taken merely as expressions of disappointment against hope or desire for reaping the fruits of normalcy. I always say let us institutionalize the earlier peace ideas and actions but the fact remains the security apparatus has not been able to institutionalize good will in a sense it should have been despite doing a range of peace efforts or programmes. The Security forces too, on their part, exhibited some sense of restraint except some recent and inhuman mishandlings like Chatergam killings. While incidents kept happening sporadically such as Kunan–Poshpora, Machhil, Shopian and Chhatergam, which posed serious questions against the ability of the security forces to operate as professionals in fourth generation warfare, the leadership, particularly that of the military has increasingly exhibited a rising sense of empathy towards the common people and their sufferings in the conflict zone but it can be safely argued that there is much more to do to be mass sensitive and professional enough. Though Chatergam emerged as a game changer when army for the first took the blame and apologized in time but again it derailed the peace project and disappointed people. In a nutshell, in terms of security, while the Forces graduated towards genuine commitment to the dictums of “Zero HR Violations” and...

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