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Kashmir Watch

Kashmir is on the boil like never before. We have been in dark and depressive depths for so long now that we have forgotten our vocabulary and expression

 

In the two decades since I first went to Kashmir as a reporter, everything has changed — on the surface, anyway. In Srinagar last week, I struggled to find my old bearings: many of the buildings are new, most of them hotels and homestays.

 

India plans to drive the internal combustion engine to extinction. The Narendra Modi government has set a sales target of six million electric vehicles by 2020 with an even more ambitious goal of having sales of new oil-driven vehicles ceasing by 2030.

 

A roundup of NDA’s performance on internal security is not flattering. It is little more than a series of recurring security lapses and failures, with no lessons learnt.

 

With the violence and war of attrition between insurgents and the security forces showing no signs of a let-up, with many observers saying it is only expected to intensify in the coming months, Kashmir is set for a hot and turbulent summer. Continued violence will kill tourism, the state's main industry and employment generator,  in what is usually its peak season.

 

On April 24, schoolgirls in uniform rushed out of a higher secondary school, picked up whatever they could lay their hands on, and started hurling the projectiles on police vans.

 

The barbaric mutilation of Indian Army soldiers on May 1 by Pakistani military personnel rightly evoked sentiments of disgust and revenge against Pakistan.

 

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s comments on the eve of his visit to India that he would be willing to act as an intermediary between Pakistan and India and that the Kashmir issue should be resolved through multilateral negotiations came as something of a pleasant surprise since the international community has tended to stay from the problem

 

For the third time in seven months, India finds itself holding the mutilated bodies of its soldiers.

 

The deteriorating situation in Jammu and Kashmir, together with strained relations among the Agenda for Alliance partners in the State, obviously prompted the meeting between Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

 


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