Our Government is as helpless as us

While the authorities are busy giving statements like ‘security forces have been asked to maintain maximum restraint, employ standard operating procedures and proper crowd control mechanisms’, the reality is in stark contrast.  Judging by the vast amount of injuries and multiple deaths, it seems that the security forces have been given ‘shoot to kill’ orders. No one in the valley is ready to buy the hollow statements of the politicians as every one of us has learnt the hard way that when it comes to security forces, our leaders hold no power.  All they do is give vague explanations to shield the culprits. In reality, no cop has ever been convicted for murdering a common man in Kashmir.  The killers are still enjoying their lavish lives and till date no action has been taken against any of them. Most of these cops with their ultra-lethal weapons know that they can get away with everything – killings, rape, torture, abuse etc. in Kashmir.  They have a super immunity, thanks to laws like AFSPA and indeed no court has the power to convict them.

If we analyse the crowd control mechanisms employed outside the valley, we realise that no matter how much India denies it, Kashmiris have been brutalised time and again. While the security forces use water guns and lathi charge in other states to curb even the most violent protests, in Kashmir even peaceful protesters are sprayed with copper bullets and tear gas shells. In our valley, every action of the security forces begs for an explanation but alas there is none. How can the security forces beat unarmed and injured civilians in hospitals?  How can they damage emergency service vehicles ferrying injured people? The truth is that nothing here makes sense. Authorities say people should not take the law into their own hands and yet they allow the forces to exploit the same laws time and again.  We fail to understand who gives these forces the authority to shoot to kill? Who has given them free hand to torture and abuse our people? Is this what the biggest democracy of the world stands for? 

If people want to vent their anger, they have every right to do so, since our constitution advocates freedom of speech and freedom of expression. Moreover, the cops should know that all their expenses, including their salaries, come from the tax payments made by the very same people that they kill without a second thought. They are there to protect us, not to kill and injure us. The moment any cop in the valley is allocated a lethal weapon (for protection of lives), he assumes that he has got all the power of the universe and can do whatever he wants, exactly like the ancient Pharaoh. 

Be it any ruling party in J&K, none of them have ever implemented any ‘logical’ strategy because our politicians don’t understand the lessons of sympathy or fundamentals of management nor do these Babus try to understand the facts and come up with better policies and people management mechanisms. This is not controlling the disarray of JCRB flyover or managing the chaos in the departments. This is not any corruption related issue. This is the question of human lives, precious lives that once lost can never be compensated for. It is high time to introspect and get management principles embedded into the governance so that politicians in power have absolute control over the forces and the common people don’t suffer anymore at the hands of these forces. The collective voice says ‘perform or perish’. It is time the government and our leaders choose which one they wanted.




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