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Defence Ministry is yet to give nod to plan of dilution of AFSPA in Kashmir & NE
1/12/2018 10:36:07 PM
The Ministry of Defence is yet to give its nod to the BJP led NDA Government's plan to introduce mild version of Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) which continues to ache the mind of the people in Jammu and Kashmir which is in force in Jammu and Kashmir and North East. Has the opportune time come for dilution of the AFSPA from Jammu and Kashmir? This question continues to bother the mind of people in Kashmir, Separatists and Kashmir centric political parties, the PDP and the National Conference. At one stage or the other the PDP and the NC have been favouring partial withdrawal of the AFSPA in the sense that the Act could be revoked in those districts where the level of violence has touched zero. But the Government of India wants the Army authorities to give its nod to the demand for revocation of the AFSPA. Hitherto, the senior Army functionaries and the Defence Ministry have not supported the demand for even partial withdrawal of the AFSPA on the plea that the security scenario was not favouring repeal of the Act. Of later the Minister of State in the PMO, Dr Jitendra Singh, has made it clear that the centre was not in favour of partial withdrawal of the AFSPA which has been in force in Jammu and Kashmir since 1990. And the former Defence Minister, Manohar Parrikar, has stated, in clear terms, that the Army may not be able to function in the absence of AFSPA in Jammu and Kashmir.
In fact the Security scenario continues to be fluid in Kashmir with daily clashes between security forces and the militants. Besides this, Pakistani troops continue to resort to ceasefire violations and the rate of ingress of militants has increased. In addition to this Educated youth has been lured by militant outfits. Of late the issue has attracted the attention of the Amnesty International which has asked New Delhi to repeal Armed Forces Special Power Act in Jammu and Kashmir and order an investigation into human rights violations in the State by an "independent and impartial authority". In its latest report titled "Denied: failures in accountability for human rights violation by security personnel in Jammu and Kashmir", the AI has termed "impunity" to security forces personnel under AFSPA and "lack of political will" to get the law repealed as "long standing problems" in J&K. Documenting "obstacles" in law and in practice to justice for victims of human rights violations, the AI has sought removal of all "requirements of sanction or prior permission" to prosecute security force personnel involved in the human rights violations.
It seems that the Amnesty International has done its duty by dishing out a suggestion to the Government of India to revoke the AFSPA without reviewing the security scenario in Jammu and Kashmir. It was expected from the Amnesty International to take note of the series of recent encounters between militants and the security forces in various parts of the Kashmir valley. The AI should have taken cognizance of the continued infiltration bids being made by groups of militants who had been brought on the launch pads across the LOC and the IB in Jammu and Kashmir. The members of the AI should have examined reports indicating mushroom growth of militant outfits that have been providing much needed support to the separatists engaged in waving Pakistani and even ISIS flags and in shouting pro-Pakistan slogans. Should these incidents be treated as too small to attract any attention. The AI should discern the movement of militants in various parts of the state which has warranted search operations and counter insurgency operations. Does the AI want the security forces to seek orders from the magistrates for carrying out search operations? If it wants so militants may escape to safer places by the time magistrates issue search warrats. Let the AI support the Government in tacking militancy. If the AI talks about human rights violations it should study the genesis of such violations. If it does so it will come to the conclusion that human rights violations are the product of Pakistan sponsored war against India in Jammu and Kashmir.
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