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A Picture That Captures Modi Government’s J&K Policy

home minister amit shah

A famous saying goes – “A picture is worth a thousand words.” This holds true to these set of pictures tweeted by Home Minister Amit Shah on June 27, 2019, when he visited the home of inspector Arshad Khan. Inspector Khan was martyred in a terror attack, and Shah went to offer his condolences to the bereaved family.

This may seem ordinary at the outset but has a message that indicates a change of approach that the Modi government has brought in, as far as dealing with Jammu and Kashmir is concerned. The message is clear that India no longer believes that appeasing the separatists in the valley will bring peace to the region. Instead, it will proudly honor those who fight terrorism and separatism in the valley.

Again, a picture will describe this shift more aptly. Cut to September 2016, when the peace process was going on in the valley, there were clear attempts to appease the separatists in the valley by the entire political system except BJP. An all-party delegation of non-BJP members even went to the doors of Hurriyat leaders begging them to be part of discussion only to have doors shut in their faces. Below is a PTI picture sourced from India Today website which describes what many would call  the politics of appeasement.

At that time too, the BJP had held on to the view that it will talk only with those who abide by the Constitution of India. At the end of its first term, the Modi government had not only withdrawn the security covers and other assistance to the separatist leaders in the valley but also ensured that the separatists like Yasin Malik are arrested. Now, the act of country’s Home Minister reaching out to the martyr’s family in the valley sets the narrative even stronger by clearly stating who this government stands with.

In fact, the indications have been made amply clear nationally as well, when Narendra Modi visited National War Memorial before taking oath as The Prime Minister for a second time. Soon after being appointed the Union Home Minister, Amit Shah had visited the National Police Memorial.

Many Measures in the Valley

The pictures of Home Minister reaching out to Jammu andKashmir’s martyr’s family is a part of the clear approach where the government is supportive of mainstream Kashmiri aspirations for peace and progress. On the other hand, the government has been firm in dealing with the troublemakers in the valley. As we noted earlier, an all-out offensive against the terrorists has been truly reflected in the rising number of terrorists getting killed in Jammu and Kashmir each year after 2014. You may also like to read our earlier piece The Banning of Jamaat-e-Islami in J&K: An All-out Crackdown on Terror Infrastructure to understand how the government acted against terror financing.

By approving the formation of an administrative and revenue division of Ladakh, an effort was made to end the hegemony of certain vested interests from Kashmir valley over the Ladakh region of the state. For more details you may read our article Decisive Step Towards Resolving Kashmir Issue?.

Thus, with every passing day, the Modi government’s efforts in the valley is strengthening the cause of peace and conclusively ending the blatant appeasement of separatist forces which was in practise over the years in Jammu and Kashmir.

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