Show some magnanimity
Two statements have come from two different quarters- but both the statements carry lot of meaning vis-a-vis governments approach in dealing with the situation in Kashmir.
First a statement was issued by the army chief Bipin Rawat wherein he equated stone pelters with Over Ground Workers (OGW’s) of the militants and openly said that they should be dealt with sternly. The second statement came from the Governor of Jammu and Kashmir Satya Pal Malik, who equaled stone pelters with militants.
Ironically, both the statements have demolished the rhetoric by all the quarters that the youth which is misguided-needs to be roped in using all measures and get them on the path of development and nation building.
If the Army chief and Governor have been advocating for roping in the youth especially in disturbed areas of the valley, then this statement has negated all their efforts if any, to an extent that seems far more damaging that can be perceived right now.
At the same time stone throwers cannot be equated with militants as stone throwing phenomenon has been witnessed over the past few years and this phenomenon has several reasons behind it.
Peace in the Valley and even in Chenab valley has been evading from holding ground from the past three decades now. Even though some efforts were made in the past to get things on track but the past four years have been so harsh that the situation in Kashmir valley seems to be reaching a point of no return.
We are witnessing educated youth joining the militant ranks, though the government has been parroting the same old line that the number of militants is dwindling but the authorities forget that what matters is the sentiment-and not the numbers.
If number of militants would have mattered then a mere hundred or so militants that too poorly trained and armed, would not have been much of a concern for the establishment. But the situation rather seems to be so complex that not only a few militants but every youth in Kashmir is being pushed to the wall.
The action by the forces against a handful of armed youth is making more and more youth prone to the gun culture as the situation has turned alarming and those who matter are playing ostrich.
We understand the political compulsions, but are political compulsions more worthy than the people of Kashmir who have been witnessing hard days since the last three decades now.
The state has already witnessed enough killings, mayhem and violence- let there be a full stop now.
It only takes to be large hearted approach to express that you really care. And the approach as of now seems to be more agitating and irritating nonetheless. How far will this approach take the youth of Kashmir, only time can tell.
Right now the situation is becoming all the more complex and it doesn’t seem to be wise to make things even worse.