Every monsoon, commuters are greeted with various sizes of pothole on the roads in our cities and towns – making traveling a tricky task. Accidents often occur and at times precious lives are also lost. It raises hue and cry in the media. Government agencies swing into action to meet the crisis. When the downpour subsides, patchwork is done and people forget the woes and agonies – till next monsoon when potholes reappear. The cycle continues season after season. For permanent resolution of the problem, it is necessary to dig the entire defective stretch and then resurface the faulty portion. It is a little time consuming, slightly difficult and somewhat costly but it is beneficial in the long run.
This holds good to the Kashmir issue as well. Every now and then violence erupts in the Valley, people take to streets and curfew is imposed to quell the hostility. It raises hue and cry in the media. Government agencies swing into action to meet the crisis. When violence subsides – curfew is lifted. Dialogue with various stakeholders follows, some stop gap measures are taken and life limps back to normal. This “patch up” solution does not last long. The same cycle of hostility recurs but permanent solution remains elusive. A different and a bold approach are needed for lasting peace.
This time, curfew has been lifted in Kashmir on 30.8.2016 after 52 days barring three police stations. Although, violence is again erupting in some places, life is limping back to normal. The political process to normalize the situation has started. An all party delegation has come back after visiting the State. Home minister Mr. Rajnath Singh had lead the team to start a political process to bring peace to the J & K, racked by protests since the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani on July 8. 2016. Admittedly, the first and foremost task is to bring back normalcy. For this, patch up solution is unavoidable. Nevertheless, once the normal life resumes, the Government must embark upon a new policy for lasting solution. Some of the suggestive steps, which are only illustrative and not exhaustive,could be the following:-
A. The groups and the individuals behind the recent unrest must be identified. This should include the persons who were directly or indirectly involved in the violent activities and those who instigated such actions.
B. At least, top forty or fifty persons among these ought to be put behind bars immediately. All imaginable stringent charges like sedition etc. should to be framed against them. If necessary, establish special courts, engage the best lawyers and arrange for hearing of the cases on a daily basis so that exemplary punishments are inflicted upon them without any delay.
C. Widespread media hype has to be created by exposing nefarious intention of the agitators behind the real motive of the recent protest. How they have misled the Kashmiri youths and what harm they have caused to the innocent people need be elaborately revealed.
D. Severe steps must be taken against the people manning the Mosques wherefrom anti-India / pro-Pakistani / Jehadi slogans were raised through loudspeakers so that such renegades under religious cover are not spared.
E. Any one found sympathetic to the terrorist activities, extremist ideology or religious fanaticism should be ruthlessly dealt with.
F. Genuine complaints of the common Kashmiris must be addressed properly, pending welfare and development projects need to be strictly monitored for speedy implementation in a time bound manner. While all reasonable demands of the people should be met to the extent possible, any unreasonable request ought to be rejected outright.
G. Path should be cleared for return of the Hindu Pandits to Kashmir valley who were forced to flee their homeland due to persecution. Article 370 should not be a roadblock in their resettlement on the plea that the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir does not allow those living outside to freely settle in the state and become it’s citizens. Pandits are the natives of Kashmir Valley and the said provision of the constitution does not apply to them. It may be recalled that on 19.1.1990, mosques issued declarations that the Kashmiri Pandits were “Kafirs” and that their males should leave Kashmir, convert to Islam or be killed. As a consequence, many Kashmiri Pandits were slaughtered and thousands had to leave their native-land under such threat. A secular nation need not tolerate such anomaly anymore.
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