By Anjali Tripathi
Kashmir and violence are mostly read together. It’s been a long time since the valley and its people have been able to enjoy peace.
Since the 1990s, when the insurgency in the valley rose, the livelihood of the minorities there became a major issue. This further led to the mass killings of the Kashmiri pandits, who also had to flee from their land and find refuge in various parts of India.
The riots and the bloodshed that started then hasn’t ended yet. Rather, the insurgents have started killing and shooting people yet again.
Several people who are either Hindus or non-locals, have been killed over the past few weeks and it only makes the situation of insurgency worse.
The place that should have been known for its heavenly views and flattering atmosphere in the heart of the Himalayan Mountain range, is known as a conflicted piece of land where tourists can’t take a single breath of freedom.
Let alone outsiders, the people of our own country fear to visit the valley—considering the number of killings and the uncertainty of life that comes to light the moment one steps foot in the region.
Recently, there has been a surge in violence in the valley owing to multiple militant attacks on civilians. Since October, there have been 33 deaths in the world’s most militarised zone and so far, the security forces have failed to curb it.
The migrant workers and non-Kashmiri Muslims are being targeted by the militants and being shot, mercilessly. The matter went viral for the mainstream media only when a prominent personality and the owner of a pharmacy, who happened to be a Kashmiri pandit, was killed by the militants in broad daylight.
Thereafter, two teachers, one of whom was a Bihari migrant, were killed in a government school in Srinagar. It rose alert amongst politicians and security forces; however, the killings continue.
Since the abrogation of Article 370, there hasn’t been a stable, political movement in the valley. There is no ruling party in Kashmir and the state is being governed under the president’s rule by the lieutenant-governor.
This lack of stable leadership has given birth to a power vacuum, which has led to the locals rethinking the future of the region.
Further, I believe that after the takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban and India’s rising tensions with China, the militants have become more courageous than ever.
Militants are being sent from across the border—them along with some traitors sitting within the valley are orchestrating these attacks. Oftentimes, they get caught or are killed in encounters with security forces but these clashes cost the nation her sons as well.
The trend of violence, which has been resurrected with a vigour, isn’t a good sign for the Indian polity and government. If this continues, it will lead to a sorry state in the valley.