This Eid eve gesture will help bring calm to the valley.
Omar grants amnesty to stone pelters. This compassionate gesture of the state administration and its leadership was long due as most of the youth arrested in cases of stone pelting are young students and were supposed to be in their classrooms rather than being incarcerated in Jails. Majority of these boys lost a precious year of their learning, whether at school or in day to day life. However, the step being ‘better late than never’ will open a new chapter in the life of these young people belonging to social stratum, other than the affluent. A cursory look into the cases of these boys reveals that most of them belong to underprivileged families who are unable to pursue the cases of their wards vigorously due to lack of adequate resources and influence.
Last three years’ unrest has exposed many darker facets of our socio-economic setup laced with political manoeuvring. Here only deprived people of the society are used as fodder for political operation and affluent class behaving like armchair observers harvest the benefits of every political strategy. A particular section of the society is pushed into the quagmire of political turbulence and later on left to fend for them self. Majority of more than hundred people killed during last summer were from economically less-privileged section of the society and in several cases were the only source of subsistence for their families. Petty ‘sarkari’ compensation and few words of glorifying their death put a cap and sealed the fate of these unfortunate souls and prospects of successful future of their families. Unfortunately, such people die unsung heroes without any commemorative inscription on their graves on behalf of the people as compared to others who manage to get the tag of immortals. During last two decades in general and last three years in particular we behaved most insensitively towards victims of unrest and inconsiderate administration took advantage of this situation.
Release of a section of detunes and withdrawal of cases against them is a belated but welcome step, and this gesture of cordiality should be extended to other detunes as well. In order to avoid any further violent uprising government has to go for vigorous introspection with a considerate approach and open mind. Administration and its units are aware of the basic grounds and reasons of every uprising, but are either incapable to handle the situation or political considerations make them to think and act otherwise. A generation of energetic people cannot be held hostage to political considerations and personal wishes. Due consideration needs to be given to the aspirations and needs of youth—the volatile section of the society. Peace and tranquillity cannot be achieved by traditional ‘carrot and stick’ technique; instead administration should listen to the inner voice and requirements of the youth. Intimidating and coercion can be timely methods to quell the uprising but ultimately the compassion and reflection of genuine aspirations is the actual remedy of every conflict.
To further strengthen the bond of trust and flexibility government of the time has to keep its promise of investigating all the cases of killings during last summer and investigate every act of atrocity judiciously in a timeframe manner; otherwise this atmosphere of cordiality will be short lived. On confidence building front every dispensation has failed during last two decades and an atmosphere of suspicion and mistrust is prevailing all over the valley. This requires to be addressed at an earliest with time bound intervention and investigation. A right step towards trust and confidence leads to peace and tranquillity and government should carry on the march of installing confidence among the masses and ensuring safety of their life, honour and property. Administrative leadership should, essentially, ensure a smooth voice to the aspirations of the people of Kashmir (particularly the youth) in a peaceful manner for resolution of all their pending issues, so that peace and serenity becomes destiny of all the Kashmiris.