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Is Doha Peace Deal A Ground For Growing Militancy In Kashmir?

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As the world grapples with the containment of the COVID-19 outbreak, New Delhi, in April, passed a new law in Kashmir that provides permanent residency rights for anyone who has resided in Jammu and Kashmir for a period more than 15 years. The fresh rule which was passed over a month ago also allows domicile to those who have pursued their education in the State turned UT for seven years.

As expected, the new law sparked tension and as a result, there has been a spurt in militancy and violence in Kashmir. On April 9, a new outfit called the Resistance Front came into the surface in Kashmir, whose 5 members were killed in the frontier district of Kupwara.

Furthermore, 4 Indian Army personnel and 1 Jammu and Kashmir Police Officer were martyred in the line of duty in Changimulla Village, Handwara on 2nd May, to rescue civilians from the clutches of the terrorists. However, this recent escalation is not just owing to Article 370 of the Indian Constitution but has a more profound backdrop.

Doha Peace Deal
Doha Peace Deal

Doha Peace Deal: A Catastrophe

Not too long ago, the United States and the Taliban signed a historic peace agreement in Doha. The deal calls for the complete withdrawal of foreign troops within 14 months and a pledge from the Taliban to complement the Afghan government and not fiddle with international terrorist networks. Though it has been met with official optimism in the states, India has been sceptical about it, given Afghanistan’s future could come into great danger.

In the geopolitical scenario, Afghanistan occupies a vital position and therefore remains crucial in the strategic affairs of New Delhi. With one of the world’s fastest-growing economies, the South Asian giant has been looking to expand its trade relations and establish access to new markets, one of which has been Central Asia. Given the country’s adversarial relationship with Pakistan, India invested in Chabahar, Iran to reach Central Asia via Afghanistan (Zaranj-Delaram highway), also acting as a counterbalance to China and Pakistan.

Therefore, Afghanistan’s political stability remains a fundamental interest in New Delhi. However, it is not just the commercial interest but the political uncertainty in the region which remains alarming for India. The withdrawal of US forces could pave the way for the chaotic scenario, making the entire region to go into the clutches of religiously inspired violence.

Islamabad’s Love Affair With The Taliban

It is a well-known fact that Islamabad has close ties with the Taliban regime. It was the first country to diplomatically support them from 1996 to 2001 as they are ethnically close to the Islamic nation—making them feel more secure from this frontier. This is where it could turn negative for India as it would never wish a pro-Pakistani or Taliban government controlling the Kabul.

Fragility Which Worries India

A conceivable future of the Taliban regime can have serious implications for India’s domestic security and one region that is expected to be affected the most is Kashmir. The road ahead seems bumpy and India needs to deal with disgruntled Kashmiris militants, on one hand, the Taliban government on the other.

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  1. Samson Chiru

    since we have gone Indira way of hard power diplomacy(smart power diplomacy:hard and soft) obviously with 1974…then 1971(I am not sure US forgot?)

    the rising India and the rising China have to be dealt with caution. outmost caution, has India proved to the world experiment of democratic peace…when its internal matters are big question mark? assuming that in realist view this is solved internally…the mafestation of US over one of the 5 being China not India? though we soon tend to forget who favored us to our side, in this case permanent member status then in UN?

    The change scenario…US and Soviet Union, Japan etc favoring Indian permanent membership in UN supports Indian giant jump into world politics. We must admit the Indira way of self reliance slogan, which the present dispensation is heading for is worth examining so long as curious student in concern on worl polictics. India need to adhere(like any other) to the role of non-state actors after the 9/11.
    again India needs to prove democratic peace with democratic countries, which seems so far positive in all the world scenario of centuries(century-wise) natural or man-made happenings. but India needs to prove in realist lens that internal matters are resolved amicably. Jai jawan jai kissan
    Jai siksha gurus(forgotten and unsung heroes of online gurus…teachers) jai medical COVID-19 warriors, police etc.

    1. Aditya

      India can always be an amalgamation of hard and soft war. While ensuring good security at the borders, we must improve the productivity of our farmers as well. Yes, India must get a permanent Seat at the UN but I am not sure if it is because of Indira’s hard power diplomacy. I would rather like to highlight the improvement in foreign relations in the last few years.

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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