Skip to main content

Article 370 abrogated in order to 'allow' corporates to buy land from poor Kashmiris

By Akash R Gedam*

The discussion on what should happen with Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) has always been an interesting one, with no feasible, sustainable solution that can ensure peace in the valley on the table. While as an Indian, one might think of the J&K for its strategic location benefits for the military purpose, and the utter pride to say that such beautiful heaven is present in my country.
While thinking it from this narrow mindset, we often forgot to consider the opinion of the inhabitants of the J&K. They have been living in an isolated warzone for so long while facing human rights abuses on a large scale. The part of India, which we call heaven, has been deprived of any development. Other Indian states sharing a border with Pakistan and China does not have the kind of issues J&K have and are prospering.
In that case, why has India failed Kashmir?
The BJP-led government argued that Article 370 and 35A are the root cause of terrorism. The provision of special status was following the conditions that J&K was facing. The conditions have not improved, and the status was withdrawn first, arguing that the status itself is not allowing the development and is responsible for the conflicts.
Is not this like removing reservations, which is the result of casteism, saying that reservation itself is the cause of casteism? Can we see the future of backward people without the presence of reservations? Would not the rich castes get richer systematically in that scenario?
Similarly, the abrogation of Article 370 does not change anything, other than allowing corporates to buy the land from the poor people of Kashmir who are struggling to live their life. Rather than empowering people to start and sustain their businesses, this capitalist thinking may force them to shut their shop and move them into bonded labor in their homeland. However, it looks good for the government to have given rise to employment opportunities. On the other hand, Indian citizens may get to live in a fancy hotel run by a capitalist firm.
Kashmir is such a great tourist place that the inhabitants could have earned a hefty earning. However, constant insurgencies have stopped local businesses from flourishing, and now the government is introducing competition from the big players having money power. There is discontent among the Kashmiris over the decision. On the other extreme, without peace in J&K, any corporate risking to invest in the land is still a question.
We have also seen the BJP-led government promoting the Kashmiri land in political rallies while asking for a vote. It is also argued that the ulterior motive is to increase the Hindu population in the region by allowing others to buy land. However, it is implausible that people will survive the harsh climatic conditions for a long time but still might fall prey to this selling point façade by the party.
Another failure is how the abrogation was handled, with a total disconnect from India and the arrest of several business people, lawyers, politicians, activists, etc. Even today, the presence of 4G is the privilege that inhabitants are banned from, to control the descent.
Abrogation of Article 370 was badly handled. It followed with total disconnect from rest of India and arrest of several business people, lawyers, politicians, activists
The recent National Investigative Agency (NIA) raids are another instance of human rights violation, in which prominent human rights activist such as Khurram Parvez was also targeted, who are raising their voices. However, this is not new for the people of J&K. Few human rights groups argue that more than one lakh people have died since 1989, while the official figures estimate the number of civilians killed due to insurgency as above half lac. This number is far more than the crimes committed by the militants’ group.
On the other hand, such atrocities by the Indian security forces are said to have rise to a number of people joining such militant groups, while India keeps accusing the Pakistan army and its state-sponsored terrorist outfits.
We have also seen militant violence against Kashmiri pandits leading to their migration, to which we blamed all the Muslim inhabitants of the J&K, also resulting in discrimination of Kashmiri Muslims. However, does that justify the human rights violation by the Indian security forces and the NIA to force out the militants and separatist group?
A recent interaction with socio-political activist ID Khajuria, president, International Democratic Party, helped one understand from the J&K people’s perspective, providing a broader picture. Khajuria is a firm believer of J&K autonomy and a utopian view of J&K as an independent country, with India and Pakistan as allies to support, so that every stakeholder is content. However, given the relationship with Pakistan and China makes it impossible.
He still believes that nothing is permanent, and the system will change. While this remains a long shot, he appeals to other fellow Indian citizens to stand by the people of J&K in their fight against human rights violations.
---
*PGP2 student at Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad

Comments

TRENDING

Lip-service on World Environment Day vs 'watered-down' eco-safeguards

By Shankar Sharma*  Just a few days ago, the world remembered the routinely forgotten global environment on the occasion of World Environment Day, briefly though, maybe just for the day. There were reports of a few high profile ceremonies in different parts of the country, including a few in New Delhi. Prime Minister Narendra Modi reportedly asked the people of our country to plant one tree per each person as a mark of respect/ gratitude for our mothers.

New Odia CM's tribal heritage 'sets him apart' from Hindutva Brahminical norms

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*  Mohan Charan Majhi took the oath as the new Chief Minister of Odisha following the electoral defeat of the BJD led by Naveen Patnaik, who served as Chief Minister for twenty-four years. The new Chief Minister is the son of a security guard and a four-time MLA who hails from the remote village of Raikala in the Keonjhar district. He belongs to the Santali tribe and comes from a working-class family. Such achievements and political mobilities are possible only in a democratic society. Majhi’s leadership even in the form of symbolic representation in a democracy deserves celebration.

Pellet gun fire severely injures Dalit worker off Bangladesh border

By Kirity Roy*  This is regarding an incident of firing pellets by the Border Security Force (BSF) personnel attached with Panchadoji Border Outpost of ‘E’ Company of 90 BSF Battalion on a Schedule Caste youth of village Parmananda under Dinhata Police Station of Cooch Behar district of West Bengal. The victim was severely injured and one portion of his face became disfigured due to pellet firing by the BSF.

Moving towards sustainable development? Social, environmental implications of HCES data

By Dr Vandana Sehgal, Dr Amandeep Kaur*  Sustainable development, the high time agenda, encompasses economic, social, and environmental dimensions, aiming for a balance between all these aspects to ensure long-term well-being and prosperity for all. One of the crucial aspects of sustainable development is consumption patterns. Consumption patterns refer to the way individuals, households, and societies use resources and goods. Sustainable consumption patterns entail using resources efficiently, minimizing waste, and considering the environmental and social impacts of consumption choices.

Sanction to persecute Arundhati Roy under UAPA politically motivated: PUCL

Counterview Network  Top human rights group, People’s Union for Civil Liberties, has demanded that the authorities should immediately withdraw the prosecution against top author Arundhati Roy and Dr Sheikh Showkat Hussain, a Kashmir academic, under the " unconstitutional"  Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act  (UAPA), calling the Delhi  Lieutenant-Governor nod for the Delhi police move "politically motivated".

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.