Prevent unwarranted backlash

Published at July 13, 2017 12:55 AM 0Comment(s)2288views


Prevent unwarranted backlash

After the attack on Amarnath pilgrims Monday night followed by widespread condemnation, situation in Kashmir continues to be tense. The attack has not only hit hard the pluralistic ethos of J&K state where peace and harmony among different communities has been held as an example in the past but also has hit the normal life which is hard to maintain in the Valley marred by violence and routine protests. Although officials maintained that the primary target was security officers, but an incident like this has the potential to initiate communal flare-up and further vitiate the atmosphere in and outside the state. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s approval of the condemnation that poured in from all directions in J&K ought to be seen as containing the unwarranted anger against all Kashmiris, particularly at a time when Kashmiris students and businessmen outside the state are feeling insecure due to spillover of different communal incidents leading to violence and even bloodshed. Rajnath said on Tuesday “I am pained at the loss of lives of Amarnath pilgrims. But I salute the people of Kashmir as all sections of society have condemned the attack.  It shows the spirit of Kashmiriyat is very much alive”. He also responded to a troll on twitter. The home minister’s message is clear and should be adjudged as meritable. It needs to be translated in this spirit only. The home minister also came to the rescue of Kashmiris students stationed outside the state after some students in Mewar Rajasthan were said to be roughed up by the locals. The minister then made an appeal, saying “I appeal to all states, they should ensure safety of all Kashmiris anywhere in country. They are also equal citizens of India.” Kashmiri students happen to be most vulnerable now and their grievances have been heard several times in the past. There is also a need to maintain a strict vigil on groups who can use the unfortunate incident to forward their vested interests and create an atmosphere of fear and hatred in the two main divisions of the state. The police must remain alert and ensure safety of all irrespective of the community they belong to. Government as well as the shrine board must look into the lapses as the bus with the passengers (pilgrims) has been said as flouting the rules. As expected, the pilgrims should have been provided the needed security especially in the high risk areas where violence is a routine. Though the loss in the most unfortunate incident is irreparable, but the government and security authorities must be on toes to prevent more damage to the fragile fabric of the society. People of Kashmir have explicitly made their opinion known amid condemnations, and there is no reason or justification to harbor prejudice against the entire community. People and communities have lived in harmony here and they must carry forward this legacy. It is times like these when leaders have to reinforce communal harmony and unity in the society.                                                  

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