Jammu and Kashmir continue to be witnessing cataclysm of events since the killing of editor in chief of Rising Kashmir” Shujaat Bukhari, followed by BJP’s deliberated parting of ways with coalition partner PDP and imposition of Governor rule. Recent release of report of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights seem to have caused panic in the BJP Camp. In an response , Indian Ministry of External affairs termed the report as fallacious, tendentious and motivated violating Indian sovereignty. Army Chief General Bipin Rawat slammed the United Nations report on alleged human rights violation in Kashmir dubbing it as “motivated”.Reacting to official response from India, the UN human rights commissioner’s spokesperson Rupert Colville said that they were “deeply disappointed by the reaction of the Indian authorities.
Meenakshi Ganguly (South Asia Director Human Rights Watch), while reacting on the Report said ,India should welcome the UN report, and commit to act on its findings, including providing access to the UN human rights office. As a first step it should seek a repeal of the draconian Armed Forces Special Powers Act, as has been recommended by several international and Indian experts. It should order an investigation into alleged violations. Addressing grievances is what responsible governments are supposed to do. They don’t deny and blame the messenger. And they certainly don’t accuse the UN high commissioner for human rights of prejudice- She said.
In the same back ground, the government banned over 30 channels in the valley, saying it had become necessary and expedient in the larger interest of public and maintenance of peace. Further Article 35-A (saving clause) is now subject to a constitutional challenge in the present petition by an NGO backed by BJP, before the Hon’ble Supreme Court.
Mirwaiz Umer Farooq threatened that “Any tinkering with the law will not be tolerated. It is a larger ploy to settle non-state subjects and dilute the identity of Kashmiris. We will occupy streets and mass agitation will be launched. Hurriyat leadership warned of mass agitation if any tinkering is allowed with the constitutional provision. Former CM and PDP President Mehbooba Mufti also told a rally in Srinagar that Any tinkering with it would turn the state into a veritable inferno. National Conference president Farooq Abdullah has also warned that his party won’t allow the Centre to fiddle with political status and honour of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.
It has become a known fact that the cases filled in the Supreme Court to challenge the demographic character of the state, have been done at the behest of BJP. It may be recalled that BJP had floated 44 plus strategy before the elections of 2014. Out of total of 87 seats of Kashmir 46 are from valley and 41 belong to Jammu Ladakh. 44 plus strategy focus on Jammu Ladakh and few seats in valley. Now when the BJP has direct control over Kashmir , it is trying to tackle the Kashmir situation in its own way, so that it can sell that during upcoming elections.
Kashmir has been used as an “experiment table” since last many decades.
The present status of Kashmir issue Is a somber reminder to the world that Kashmiri people are deprived of their fundamental rights. A muscle approach will make the things more worse , only proper dialogue can bring the peace in Kashmir .
(The author a Human Rights Activist writes on issues concerning politics, development and human rights. His views are personal)