Provide a closure

July 14, 2018 EDITORIAL 98 Views
Provide a closure

New Delhi’s repeated denials of the UN report on the massive rights abuses prominently committed by the security forces in Jammu and Kashmir is a cruel snub to the ill-fated victims whose numbers have climbed unabated since the last three decades, resulting in immense sufferings which are at the heart of the political turmoil in the border state.
It has become routine, almost fashionable, for the leaders of the world’s largest democracy to diss the scale of wounds inflicted on the people since an armed insurgency broke out in Kashmir in early nineties. But that doesn’t mean truth can remain hidden from the eyes of concerned people and agencies like the UN.
Since militancy caught the imagination of the young and not so young alike in this godforsaken land, innocent people have become victims of armed forces on both sides of the political spectrum. But be it the massacre in Gawkadal or Wandhama, it is the ordinary people who have to suffer at the hands of contesting ideologies waging a war on each other in a contested territory.
While militant groups have committed their share of crimes, and they have been gruesome in nature, but before demanding accountability from them, and bringing them to book, we must look into the mirror and dispassionately ask ourself: how did we come to such a pass in Kashmir? How can we expect loyalty from people who are living under the shadow of gun pointed at their faces from New Delhi?
Have can we forget what we did in Kunan-Poshpora. Those women are waiting for a closure. And so are the half widows, waiting for the government to tell them where their husbands disappeared. In fact, every town, every village where the seeds of discord have been sown by New Delhi with its bare hands is beseeching for a closure.
But the fact that not a semblance of accountability is demanded by the so called elected leaders from the armed forces is not only devious but shameful too. The least a government can do is to seek forgiveness from the people of Kashmir but not before providing them a sense of closure and a hope of better tomorrow.
In the latest salvo by Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman at the UN report, she’s saying it has “ignored realities how the Indian Army had been exercising maximum restraint in fighting militants and curbing protests in Jammu and Kashmir”. She should also remember that the police only yesterday booked an army unit for the murder of a 22-year-old in Kupwara. But we know such cases have happened in past and they will continue to be ignored this time also. That is where the resolution starts from. Acknowledge first.

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