Sep 23, 2023
Sep 23, 2023
Kashmir valley is undergoing a stalemate due to lackadaisical governance of the Omar Abdullah government. The young Chief Minister who donned the mantle of Kashmir politics from his father has utterly failed to control the situation in which Kashmir finds itself.
Blame game is on in the media and strategic circuits: whether stone-pelters have links with Pakistani terror groups? Are they behind inciting violence in Kashmir? It is known fact to all of us mess in which Pakistan finds itself: Does ISI has time to engineer such sort of un-rest? Instead of harping on Pakistani link , we should try to understand, what are the reasons that gave birth to these young stone pelters?
The answer lies in failure of the state government to address socio-economic issues  and concentrate on mundane issues. After the public outrage against Omar Abdullah governance, the tech-savvy CM has called for an all-party meeting, to which PDP’s Mehbooba Mufti has declined to attend. Will this serve any purpose at this moment, when the situation is volatile in the valley? First and foremost aim of the state government is to bring law and order in the state, politics can take a backseat for the moment.
In all this political humdrum, none of the Kashmiri politician is talking in one voice to address the real cause of stone pelters. The cause can only be addressed if welfarist arm of the government rehabilitates these young stone pelters, engages them with newer educational opportunities and provides them jobs in state government institutions. This may cost state exchequer a lot of money, but it could be one means through which the vigor of the Kashmiri youth could be channelised in the right direction. Then, create avenues for them to join Kashmiri mainstream politics and detest them to join boycott culture of separatist Hurriyat Conference.
Calling of army may be a quick-fix solution for the woes of Kashmiri people; the real issue lies un-attended. Army may be able to bring calm in the valley, but it will not be able to erase idea of becoming a stone pelter again. State government needs to do its homework meticulously, so that such skirmishes do not erupt again and give a platform for emergence of militancy in Kashmir again.
Another important factor which media has totally ignored is; these stone pelters have not attacked any pilgrims who are traveling for Amarnath yatra. The media needs to be appreciative of the fact that stone pelters have a genuine concern and they cannot be clubbed in the category of “future insurgents.”
Omar Abdullah has begun to give his confession to the national media; it has been proved in the past that he failed to control Amarnath land protests and Shopian murder case. The young NC leader has shown political immaturity to handle trivial issues in one of most sensitive region of the world. The stone pelter issue could have been dealt in much serious manner a month ago, when Kashmir was peaceful, but as reported in the media, the young CM was holidaying in Ladakh.
Situation in Kashmir will eventually come under control in coming weeks, but the big question is whether the rhetorical CM will become more serious on improving governance in the state or let the Centre decide on the outcome of Kashmir valley, which may not be acceptable to all groups in Kashmir and keep the valley in a state of lawlessness.