By Safi Nasim
Four months have Hone by since India abrogated Article 370 and bifurcated the state of J&K into two union territories. In order to hide human rights violations, communication services in the region were cut off and foreign delegations and journalists are not allowed to enter the J&K. Internet blockade in the state continues while mobile phones have been partially restored.
On August 5, 2019, New Delhi unilaterally annexed J&K, revoking articles 35A and 370 of the Constitution which gave a special status to Kashmir. The aftermath has witnessed war within India, as besides leaders of Western countries and their media, India’s opposition parties, various leaders; renowned entities and media criticized the illegal moves of the Modi government. While, Indian extremist rulers are also escalating tensions with Pakistan to divert attention from the drastic situation of the Indian Held Kashmir, and have continued shelling inside Pakistani side of Kashmir by violating the ceasefire agreement in relation to the Line of Control (LoC).
In this regard, Business Standard wrote: “The chiefs of three armed forces met Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, a defense ministry spokesperson said. Sources said Singh reviewed the security situation. Indian military is in a fiasco and feels burdened with domestic and international pressures on J&K. Indian narrative has not been successful, thanks to Pakistan’s aggressive foreign policy initiatives. Even within India, many people in society are worried that a serious blow back continues to simmer and waits lifting of curfew. Indian government already feels stuck and this meeting was in the context to induce a reaction from Pakistan to shift focus of world from Kashmir crisis to a conflict between two nuke capable neighbours”.
According to Indian Express, “Union Minister Jitendra Singh has said that the day is not far off when the Indian flag will be unfurled in Pakistan-Occupied-Kashmir. India is giving her masses a utopian hope. Neither people of J&K nor Pakistan is willing to let India annex J&K. With 900,000 troops committing killings, detentions, rapes and use of pellet guns, aggressive reaction of the local Kashmiri people will make India stumble. No amount of oppression or fake narratives can hide reality of Indian brutal annexation”.
Times of India wrote: India … called as ‘naked propaganda’ Islamabad taking a group of foreign diplomats to POK [Pakistan Occupied Kashmir] after India’s artillery fire targeting several terror launch pads along the LoC in Kashmir…Pakistan had very openly offered Indian government to allow her Ambassador to Islamabad to visit alongside other 22 diplomats to the targeted area and indicate the alleged launch pads. The response is still awaited from India. Avoiding this opportunity to verify own claims testifies against Indian narrative. The visiting diplomats have seen proofs of Indian
firing, the damages caused on to civil population and interacted with local population to find the reality, which is totally against what India is telling her masses”. Hindustan Times wrote: “The October 27, anti-India protests in London over Kashmir will not be allowed to gather or culminate outside the Indian high commission, Scotland Yard has informed organizers, following pressure from New Delhi and the Indian community concerned over a possible repeat of the recent violence … Violators will be arrested under Public Order Act. The battle for Kashmir will not be fought in J&K region alone, rather Kashmiris will take this conflict to all continents of the world … More protests in more capitals of the world will continue to take place. UK has likely taken this decision due to likely development of any law and order situation but it does not imply that UK agrees with Indian narrative”. It is mentionable that addressing an election rally at Ausa in Maharashtra’s Latur district for state polls which held on the October 21, 2019, Indian Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said on October 13, 2019: “Prime Minister Narendra Modi abrogated Articles 370 and 35A on one hand and farmer-unemployment issues on the other. .. Prime Minister Modi and … BJP nationalist president… Union Home Minister Amit Shah are deflecting the core issues and asking youths to watch the moon when they are demanding jobs … the media is [also] distracting people’s attention from the real issues like the downfall of the economy … What Modi and Shah are doing is to divert the attention of the people from the real issues and focus on Corbett Park, Moon, China Pakistan … They are conveniently silent on the issues that are plaguing the country … the real objective of moves like demonetisation in 2016 and rollout of Goods and Services Tax (GST) was to help the rich at the cost of the poor people … The real target of the note ban and GST was to take out money from pockets of poor and give it to the rich”. It is notable that in 2017, Indian government of PM Modi announced economic reforms, claiming that the country’s economy was in a strong position. Instead of improving the economy, Premier Modi wanted to make India, an economic power to counter China. Modi’s hastily planned economic reforms created many domestic social evils in the country and have resulted into wearisome economic policies for citizens. In this respect, BJP former lawmaker and finance minister Yashwant Sinha, while pointing out poorly planned economic reforms stated: “Private investment has shrunk as never before in two decades, industrial production has all but collapsed, agriculture is in distress, construction industry, a big employer of the work force, is in the doldrums and exports have dwindled.” On March 6, this year, Rahul Gandhi claimed: “There is now enough evidence to prosecute Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Rafale deal. .. the trail of corruption in the Rafale fighter jet deal begins and ends with … therefore, an FIR should be lodged against him … crucial Rafale files incriminating him are now reported stolen by the Government, is destruction of evidence.”Failure of Modi’s economic plans has especially affected the Indian police officials who have accelerated the practice of corruption.
In the Indian general elections of 2019, BJP and National Democratic Alliance (NDA) won huge majority in the Lok Sabha. Hindu majority was mobilized on ‘hate Muslim’ slogans and ‘anti-Pakistan’ jargons. Indian PM Modi’s extremist party BJP had also got a land sliding triumph in the Indian elections 2014 on the basis of anti-Muslim and anti-Pakistan slogans. As regards Modi’s victory in the elections 2019, India’s many politicians and analysts opined, “Modi’s election win is a victory for far right Hindu nationalism … India’s secular democracy is under threat… BJP’s record in 2015-2019 has been divisive to say the least. The party has marginalised religious minorities, especially Muslims, from public life with many, as a result, being lynched by Hindu nationalists in the name of cow protection … Jingoism and Islamophobia have propelled the BJP to an even stronger showing than in 2014. A Modi victory puts India’s 200 million Muslims in danger … Modi is part of the large Hindu supremacist family … In his home state of Odisha, he furthered India’s sectarian divide, pushed the idea of Hindu supremacy and with that, violence against Muslims, Christians and other minorities … Modi is radicalising Muslims.” Nonetheless, we can conclude that owing to the continued lockdown in the Indian Held Kashmir, the war within India has accelerated, as PM Modi has failed in diverting attention from internal issues and problems which the country has been facing.
The writer is a political analyst; views expressed by him are entirely his own.