Srinagar, Jun 3: Security agencies in Kashmir are at tenterhooks as the trend of local boys joining the militant ranks is not showing much decline.
Sources told Precious Kashmir that despite Ramadan ceasefire being at place local youth especially in south Kashmir have not given up arms and with each passing day more youth are choosing arms. “At present all the operations against militants stand suspended but we are receiving the reports that local youth are choosing a path which won’t take them anywhere,” a top police official said.
A politician said, “Efforts are on to engage the youth and keep them away from taking up the arms. But most of the Kashmir leaders believe that ground situation is grim and New Delhi would have to take a major leap forward if it wants peace to prevail in the Valley.”
He said that “political dimensions” of the Kashmir problem cannot be ignored and Delhi today or tomorrow would have to discuss these with the stakeholders. “Holding conditional dialogue won’t help anyone’s cause. Rigidity has to be given up to pave the way for Ramadan ceasefire to be extended,” the politician added.
An analyst said, “Everyone these days is saying that the ball is in the court of Hurriyat leaders as New Delhi has invited them for talks but till date Delhi has not extended a formal invitation nor has made the contours of the talks process public.”
He said, “If Government of India really wants peace to return then it should hold talks with the militants and the youth who have picked up the arms.”
An official said that despite security agencies contacting the families of the youth who have picked up arms “nothing much” has been achieved. “The political initiative seems the only way out,” he added.
It may be recalled that even the top army commanders in the recent past have stressed on the need for starting a political process in Kashmir.
“If the political process takes-off there is every possibility about the level of violence going down and local youth not resorting to violence. Since the day BJP led NDA government has come into power in the Centre it has handled Kashmir with an iron fist,” said a Kashmir watcher.
“After completing its four years in the office the BJP led government has made an attempt to reach out to Kashmiris by announcing ceasefire and staing that its ready to hold talks with Hurriyat. It looks like that BJP has realized that using force is no solution and people have to be engaged in the process,” he said, adding, “Now it remains to be seen whether New Delhi would carry forward the process or abandon it.”