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Kashmir plunges into oblivion yet again
Flashback to December 2014 - Jammu & Kashmir had just witnessed a record 65% voter turnout in the Assembly elections. This was a momentous achievement for Indian democracy considering the fact that all signs had pointed to a mass boycott of the elections.

Separatists, moderates and extremists had put in all their might to convince the public to not vote. However, the people of the state were defiant, and how! For the first time in 25 years, the voter turnout was so high in the state. But there was a catch - no party had a clear majority. The PDP emerged with 28 seats, while the BJP recorded impressive gains to achieve 25 seats. The National Conference and the Congress were the big losers. But a compromise had to be made to form a government, putting aside varied ideologies. Amit Shah and Mehbooba Mufti had multiple rounds of talks and they finally managed to fork out a coalition government - which always felt like a compromise.

Fast forward to 2019 - the so-called "political arranged marriage" has ended. The BJP has withdrawn its support to the PDP, citing the increased violence in the state. But the differences are much deeper. In the first place, this coalition was a major clash of ideologies. The right-wing BJP had always pushed its Hindutva narrative, with growth and development in the background. On the other hand, the PDP had always focused on the plight of the Kashmiri public and had shown major empathy towards separatist groups.

Even though the two parties worked in unison, it never came out as a natural fit. Whilst BJP state leaders were always pushing the nationalism rhetoric, PDP seemed to shy away from backing it publically. Now, finally the differences have reached saturation point with various key disagreements visible. The two parties openly disagreed on points such as the use of human shields by the Indian army in Kashmir. Another key deal breaker was the continued political closeness between key separatists and the PDP. Whilst Mehbooba Mufti has claimed time and again that she wants peace in the region, her actions have suggested otherwise quite often.

Amongst all of this, the public of Kashmir has been the scapegoat. Political and social tensions have crippled the region massively. The continued battle between stone pelters and the army has ensured that there is no peace in the region. Even if there is no major terrorist activity in the region, it appears that tensions remain in the air. Development of the region has been minimal due to all of these reasons. Since the political compromise has ended in the state things will only get worse. A stable government is the key to development anywhere in the world. With Governor's rule now applied for the eighth time in the state, it has plunged to new lows. Governor NN Vohra is dealing with a massive task on his hands. As it is, the situation has been on boiling point for a number of months, and now with no CM in place, there are further question marks over the pace of development in the state.

With the continued clash of political ideologies in the state, it is hard to fathom a solution going forward. The opposition parties including the National Conference and the Congress have already ruled out forming a new coalition with the PDP. Barring a major change of heart, it is hard to see any improvement in the situation. Peace and development will continue to elude the people of J&K. This is truly a sad state of affairs for a region bestowed with natural beauty - and things are about to head downhill!

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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