September 29, 2020

Public disconnect under non local babus in Kashmir

With majority of  the Deputy Commissioners and Divisional Commissioner in Kashmir coming from the non local background, the mainland administration in Kashmir is failing to connect itself with the people at grass roots amid intensifying COVID-19 spread. Hardly two deputy commissioners of the valley districts come from Kashmiri background and eight other deputy commissioners are either no J&K residents or tribals of Jammu region. With non Kashmiri bureaucrats at the helm in majority of the districts working under the control of a non local divisional commissioner, the disconnect of the mainland administration with the hapless populations in Kashmir is deepening month after month and day after day. The field visits of the Lt Governor’s advisors give people rarely an opportunity to petition their grievances before the deputy commissioners who otherwise don’t bother to pay heed even to the calls from former legislators and ministers even over the public grievances concerning availability of basic social services in major towns and remote villages in most of the valley districts. The people even if invited to attend the meetings called in connection with the conduct of yet another phase of the proposed “back to village” program prefer to skip such meetings due to luke warm responses to their demands from the non local deputy commissioners.

People in Kashmir are more concerned about the improvement in the working of the justice delivery system than the delivery of basic social services. So more focus has to be on healing the wounds of the people and less on the delivery of social services. Only deputy commissioners of Kashmiri background  can give Kashmiris sense of satisfaction and sense of belongingness which are must for improving the working of the justice delivery system in Kashmir.

Shockingly the government for one or other reason unceremoniously removed Kashmiri bureaucrats from the positions of deputy commissioners of the valley districts early summer this year and brought in either tribals of Jammu region or non J&K residents to head the valley districts. An attempt to deny Kashmiri’s role even in the mainland civil administration may be good for the political health of the party in power at the centre and it’s collaborators in Kashmir but it would surely spoil the government’s plans of reaching out to the people with a new political and developmental road map for the future. Implementation of hostile measures by non local bureaucrats won’t douse the flames of anger and neutralise the intensity of public alienation in Kashmir but would throw up many more challenges for the government in restoring the faith of people in the working of the government and the justice delivery system. People in Kashmir are more concerned about the improvement in the working of the justice delivery system than the delivery of basic social services. So more focus has to be on healing the wounds of the people and less on the delivery of social services. Only deputy commissioners of Kashmiri background can give Kashmiris sense of satisfaction and sense of belongingness which are must for improving the working of the justice delivery system in Kashmir.

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COVID-19

India
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