An open threat by militants to family members of the police official, threatening them of dire consequences, if they don’t leave the forces has created an atmosphere of uncertainty and anxiety among forces. Although, the threatening utterances is nothing new, but what should concern all of us is that, this is becoming new norm in valley. And, something, which has far the larger socio-political implications for a close nit society like that of ours.
An average policeman is not just tasked with anti-insurgency operations but also with normal routine policing like traffic management, criminal investigation, data collection and so on. It is not convenient to brush every policeman with the same brush and then taking the veracity of this negligent prejudice to a whole new level, because the families of policemen have nothing to do with what the members of their families do for the living.
The politics of retaliation, as history stands witness, has taken both the conflicting parties to destruction. As most of the conflict resolution experts say that a war or a conflict is nearly impossible to take out from the human life. But, what a progressive civilization does is that it minimises the destruction, collateral and intensity of the conflicts and work out towards the resolution. But, including civilians in a conflict between two combatants is nowhere closer or acceptable to any doctrine. Then how can it be accepted.
There are signs that the opinion in the Muslim world is growing less vocal for Kashmir cause. In recent years, this steady decline in support for Kashmir comes in the wake of internal conflicts among Kashmiris – which includes a Kashmiri policeman killing a militant or vice-vera and both of them being part of a Muslim majority.
It also holds truth to the fore that people in thousands attend the funeral processions of the militants killed by security forces and J&K Police. But the disaffection is seen in the mixed review — at best — that Pakistan, widely considered a major benefactor of Kashmir unrest, receives in many largely Muslim nations. So to the extent that Kashmir is viewed as a proxy for Pakistan in a regional power struggle, this may damage their appeal.
Days before, Hizbul Mujahideen’s new top commander Zakir Bhat alias Musa has again threatened JK policemen and informers, warning of an upcoming “war” in the region in a video released online. As in case, does this justify the claims-what many people believe that the local policemen are our own brothers?
The sudden change in Hizb’s stand from “merger with Pakistan” to “Islamic Khilafat”, surprised many, wherein Zakir Musa appealed to people to turn to Islam, a hint at the outfit’s change in stand.
“Warning of an upcoming war”, and sudden change in the Hizb’s stand only reflects the establishment of ISIS in Kashmir in coming days, and, if it happened then the whole discourse will get changed. Hurriyat as well the common people are well aware of the ramifications of the ISIS, which will lead to further decline of support to the Kashmir cause.
Unsurprisingly, Muslim sympathies in the India-Kashmir conflict lean heavily toward the Kashmiris. In the year 2010, majority of Muslim section in India were apparently more empathetic with the Kashmiri’s rather than 2016.
And the educated people in India believes that “the rights and needs of the Kashmiri people should be taken care of as long as the state of India exists,” highlighting the fact that, even before the 2016 uprising, optimism on this issue was rare in many Muslim countries.
Let’s wait and see where the time will lead us in future.
By Umer Wani
The author is a freelance Journalist