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Targeted Killing In Kashmir: What Explains Sudden Rise Of Attacks- Solution & Challenges

Delhi Chief Minister and AAP national convenor Arvind Kejriwal held ‘Jan Akrosh Rally’ at Jantar Mantar, Delhi, against the Centre over the targeted killings of Kashmiri Pandits in Kashmir on June 5. He has slammed the Modi government, questioning how many meetings are required to resolve the issue?

The political onslaught against the Centre is obvious in such hostile circumstances in the valley as the Modi government often claims it is building a ‘Naya Kashmir.’ Opposition leaders have questioned the Centre’s ‘Kashmir Policy’ as Kashmir is seeing a spate of targeted killings in the last few weeks, which triggered the fear of another ‘mass exodus of Kashmiri Pandits.

The first week of June has been a nightmare for people in the valley as they witnessed a series of targeted killings similar to the 1990s killings of Kashmiri Pandits. Terrorists gunned down a bank manager hailing Rajasthan and a laborer from Bihar in two incidents in Kashmir. In the first incident, a teacher from Jammu was shot dead at the government school.

These killings have pressed the panic button in the UT. Panic-stricken Kashmiri Hindus, a minority in the UT, have hit the streets demanding their relocation to a safer place.

Now, the biggest question is, when will the valley see the real normalcy? There are always two narratives that are around. First indicates normalcy as tourism has been flourishing in the valley in the last couple of months, and the second one is the rise in terror attacks. People from the pro-government segment blame Pakistan for these attacks, while the Opposition questions the Centre and LG Manoj Sinha-led UT government.

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The timing of these attacks hints at the recent Delhi Court’s life imprisonment order for separatist leader Yasin Malik. Malik enjoys sympathy from Pakistan-backed terror organizations and a section of people in the valley.

However, it is yet to decode what triggered such targeted attacks against Kashmiri Hindus.

Notably, Jammu And Kashmir successfully endured protests amid lockdown for months amid protests against the abrogation of Article 370, post-August 5, 2019, much before the rest of India got to know what’s called the pain of ‘Lockdown’ during Covid pandemic. Many people sensed the pain the valley often experienced during strict curbs imposed post terror incidents. Post revocation of special status to J&K, almost all top local leaders were kept under house arrest. Fortunately, the valley didn’t see big violent incidents. The sudden spurt of targeted killings after almost 3-year of cancellation of Article 370 was unexpected and a puzzle for the security strategists.

What’s The Solution?

Experts say only dialogue with all stakeholders and revival of political activities which have been remaining dormant under the President’s rule.

Ex-DGP J&K Kuldeep Khoda, on a TV Show, said that targeted killings in Kashmir would not end as long as we will have no strategy to deal with Pakistan and we have to stop the neighboring country from using its resources against India. He added that we have been curtailing Pakistan-backed terrorism in J&K instead of taking decisive action to end it forever.

There is no double thinking that all is not well in J&K, and the Centre must rethink its J&K policy. Also, we should give rethink our policy in dealing with Pakistan. We can’t deny the fact that ‘frozen talks’ with Pakistan have so far yields nothing objective.

Kashmir has seen the regime of all mainstream political parties- Congress, BJP, NC, and PDP, but the wait for the terror-free normalcy is only prolonging. The day youth of Kashmir stop picking guns, and anti-India sentiment disappears in the valley, the Himalayan region will come out in its real character as ‘Heaven on earth’- “Gar Firdaus, Ruhe Zamin Ast, Hamin asto, Hamin asto, Hamin Ast”

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