27 July, 2021

It's Either You Or Rasputin

New Delhi, Kashmiri leaders owe it to the people: to work at peace again

It's Either You Or Rasputin
Ramzan is almost over. On October 6, Kashmiris will march again to Lal Chowk for 'azadi'. Upon New Delhi's response rests the future of Kashmir, India and possibly the subcontinent. For the August 23 protest, the Centre enlisted 20 CRPF battalions, called out the army, arrested the leaders of the coordination committee and declared a statewide curfew. Since then, over a dozen people have died and hundreds injured in daily battles with the security forces. As I write, the die seems to be cast for a repeat.

New Delhi seems not just resigned to another confrontation but is working actively to ensure it. The prevailing sentiment among home ministry hawks and the Rasputin in the PMO is that 'the Kashmiris' need to be shown their place once and for all. They must be left in no doubt that they can't dictate events. So the polls shall take place on schedule no matter what they cost in human lives or what they do to the credibility of the Indian State.

Kashmiris know this is a recipe for disaster. The August demonstrations were angry but...

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