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Saturday, February 17, 2024

Kashmir teetering on the brink of disaster

Tensions in Kashmir are rising days after four people were killed in a raid by Indian security forces, fueling outraged protests over the impunity and stirring fears that the conflict-torn region could be sliding into another especially deadly phase. The Indian police said that two militants and two businessmen whom they described as “terrorist supporters” had been killed when the police raided a shopping complex.

“Arrogance is over. Heat, rain and nights have passed and the sound of weapons have snatched away many lives’” These lines written impromptu by CM Mamta Banerji of West Bengal over what happened today as PM Narendra Modi was forced to retreat on the farm laws for which an epic sit-in agitation has been going on for more than a year. There are three clauses. The first is about the arrogant attitude of the PM, the second is whether and the third is the firing of the son of the deputy Home Minister Mishra’s son’s gun which killed some and more were crushed to death under his car.

Mishra is deputy under Amit Shah, the most-doughty heavyweight in the Modi cabinet. However, the poem has eclipsed unsuccessfully a much serious concern of the day: the exhuming of the bodies of innocent Kashmiri youths. The J&K administration on Thursday exhumed the bodies of the two civilians killed in Monday’s shootout with police and ordered a magisterial inquiry, after protests over the incident spread across the Valley.

Read more: What led to the great divide of India and Pakistan?

A major shootout in Kashmir: What happened?

Till late on Thursday night November 18, 2021, the bodies of Altaf Bhat, a businessman, and Dr Mudassir Gul, a dentist, had not been handed over to the families. Four people had been killed in Monday’s encounter in Hyderpora, Srinagar, and buried quickly by police in Handwara, 70 km away. Family members of three of them (one was allegedly a Pakistani) contested police claims that they were either militant or had militant links.

The protests across Kashmir were further fueled by police forcibly ending an agitation by the family members of the civilians killed in Srinagar on Wednesday midnight demanding their bodies. However, whether Magray’s body would be exhumed too, remains unclear. Magray’s father Abdul Latief Magray, a state bravery award winner, said that his son worked as an office staff with Gul. “How can my son be a militant as I fought against them during peak militancy in the area?” in the rein of Modi and Shah this is tough son of a gun as shown in the fake encounter of Osaib. Osaib Altaf Marazi, killed by Indian security while he tried to cross the river Jhelum on the day India scrapped Article 370.

Do these nuances show the bankruptcy of Indian politics?

The election banner of BJP reads Modi warning “We will kill you, definitely we will kill you. By the gun of our own choice, and the bullet also of our own choice. Only the land will be yours. This is not true because India had bought pellet guns that Israel was using against the Palestinians. And now India was using against the Kashmiris whose land was not the property of Indians.

The events have followed quickly one on the heels of a change of policy declared by NSA Ajit Kumar Doval that civilians will be in the cross-hair of new policy, and army chief Bipin Rawat that it is good that the people of Kashmir are now killing the terrorists.

Read more: Narendra Modi: The cause of agony in India

Aruna Roy and Doval are polls part of their moral outlook. She is committed to upholding the Constitution and thinks that it does not allow anyone to tinker with civil liberties. Doval is notorious like his master Modi. Much that is wrong in the country is taking the law in hand or disregarding it for a misconceived nationalism as the ruling echelon is blamed for this. Even PM Vajpayee could not force Modi to do his rajdharm or follow duty to serve the people. How can we make the cops accountable to law when Doval advises the police to watch the civil society with suspicion! It only shows Doval taking laws cavalierly.

Mustafa Khan holds a Ph.D. on Mark Twain. He lives in Malegaon Maharashtra, India. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.