J&K: One Year Since Revocation of Special Status: RSTV- Big Picture

Rajya Sabha TV programs like ‘The Big Picture’, ‘In Depth’ and ‘India’s World’ are informative programs that are important for UPSC preparation. In this article, you can read about the discussions held in the ‘Big Picture’ episode on “J&K: One Year Since Revocation of Special Status” for the IAS Exam.

J&K: One Year Since Revocation of Special Status:- Download PDF Here

Anchor: Frank Rausan Pereira

Guests:

  1. S.P. Vaid, Former Director General of Police, Jammu & Kashmir     
  2. Prafulla Ketkar, Editor, Organiser    
  3. Maj. Gen. Ashwani Siwach (Retd.), Strategic Affairs Expert

What’s in the news?

  • On 5 August 2019, the Government of India revoked the special status, or limited autonomy, granted under Article 370 of the Indian Constitution to Jammu and Kashmir.
  • On 5 August 2020, curfew was imposed across the valley as authorities apprehended violent protests by separatists and Pakistan-sponsored groups. 
  • These groups observe August 5, the first anniversary of the revocation of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status, as ‘black day’.
  • Police and CRPF personnel were deployed across the valley to ensure that the plans of the separatists to disturb peace do not succeed. 
  • Police vehicles, fitted with public address systems, went around localities announcing the imposition of strict curfew for two days.

How has the security situation changed since the revocation of the special status of Jammu & Kashmir?

Internal security situation:

  • The infiltration grid on the Line of Control has become effective. The number of terrorist incidents has come down by nearly 30-40 percent.
  • Local recruitment by separatist groups and infiltration has reduced considerably. 
  • Radicalization has reduced in south Kashmir and better intelligence is coming from the locals to help the security forces to carry out operations. 
  • Vigilance network on the border by the army, BSF and police has become stricter and more coordinated. 
  • Stone pelting incidents have come down.

External security situation:

  • Pakistan is persistently trying to send terrorist squads for infiltration through the border. 
  • The National Investigation Agency has choked the Hawala funds which the Hurriyat wing was distributing among the stone pelters.

Positive developments across entire Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh 

  • Under the Jammu and Kashmir Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation Limited (JKIDFC), 593 projects were sanctioned for the development of roads and bridges.
  • The public works department in J&K targeted completing 180 infrastructural development projects in 2020. 
  • Domicile certificates were granted to more than 5000 families:
    • Who had come from West Pakistan immediately after 1947 and after 1956.
    • Certain categories of people like Gorkhas or Valmikis. 
  • Constitutional provisions have been implemented in both the union territories of J&K and Ladakh such as – GST, Prevention of Corruption Act, Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code
  • Hurriyat factions have become irrelevant and a unanimous demand for the restoration of the state assembly has developed. 

Challenges

  • It is not sustainable to block internet services for the residents of J&K for a longer period, despite the ongoing risk of instigation coming from the Pakistani side. 
  • Once the transition is made from 2g services to 4g services, the risk of separatist propaganda will also increase further, as local youth will have easier access to outside information. 
  • Pakistan’s efforts for promoting infiltration in J&K to destabilize the peace and portray a misleading image of the present-day Kashmir on international platforms. 
  • The major reason for the easy radicalization of youth by terrorist outfits in Kashmir is the lack of employment avenues available for them. This is due to a lack of industrial development in the region. 
  • Only a partial amount of the PM relief fund provided in 2015 (80 000 crore rupees) has been utilised for the development of the region. 
  • Nearly 50000 employment vacancies remain unfilled in Jammu and Kashmir, 800 of these are for gazetted officers and remaining for class 4 and non gazetted. 

Way forward

  • Apart from the geographical and political integration of J&K with the rest of India, an emotional integration of people and culture is required. 
  • Aspirations of local youth must be met by stepping up employment opportunities and infrastructural development like metro, horticulture, floriculture, etc. 
  • Employment schemes need to be formulated and implemented.
  • A technical solution for filtering the propaganda that is coming from Pakistan and China which poisons the minds of Kashmiri youth is to be found.
  • Stopping all the illegal weapons, narcotics and fake currency trade along the LoC trade routes being carried out by Pakistan-based groups.
  • Ensuring fair working of the police without undue political interference.
  • Ensuring that the fruits of development reach the grassroots level and the existing nationalist voices within the Kashmir valley and of people who have supported India, are acknowledged. 
  • Dealing with the problems in J&K as national problems rather than viewing them as regional problems. 
  • Countering Pakistan’s agenda of cyber warfare and information warfare.

Read previous RSTV articles for the IAS exam here.

 

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