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Synopsis: Reasons behind recent terrorist attacks in Kashmir, challenges involved and the future course of action.
The targeted terror attacks against minorities in Kashmir indicate a dangerous move. Sikhs and Hindus were identified and shot for being who they are. It also led to Muslim casualties. The purpose was to spread terror, threating minorities and taking advantage of the communal tensions which are developing in India.
Such attacks indicate that counter-insurgency strategies have their place but not without any comprehensive political settlement that involves all parties.
What is the motive behind these attacks?
Drawing a response from the state: The purpose of these attacks is to draw a response from the state and to create a “whatever happens we will win” strategy.
Deepening the communal divide: Their purpose is deep communal divide in India. With this terrorism will get strength.
What are some challenges in resolving the insurgency issue?
– Absence of a united front: Indian republic is facing the tragedy of not have a common language of solidarity or a political language that can express a united front against violence of all kinds. In a state like Kashmir, we do not still have the political language to overcome this divide.
– Absence of a political settlement: Kashmir still does not have avenues of normal political articulation. Its statehood has not been restored and its constitutional humiliation continues. Kashmir was never allowed the normal processes of social mediation of a democracy. No new political class has emerged. In its absence, there is no chance of a counterinsurgency strategy succeeding.
How should the govt respond?
The first is a deepening and widening of combing for terrorists inside Kashmir.
The second response is external. In the Indian state’s mind, there is no doubt that this is the work of groups supported by Pakistan. If that is the case, we have once again been reminded (as the US was in Afghanistan), that air strikes are not a solution to the problem of terrorism.
Source: This post is based on the article “What the attacks against minorities in Kashmir reveal” published in The Indian Express on 9th Oct 2021.