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Home > Uncategorised > India: Supreme Court Refuses to Check State Blockade in Kashmir.

India: Supreme Court Refuses to Check State Blockade in Kashmir.

Thursday 15 August 2019, by siawi3

Source: https://thewire.in/government/sc-refuses-to-order-lifting-restrictions-in-kashmir-will-take-up-matter-in-2-weeks

Supreme Court Refuses to Check State Blockade in Kashmir.

SC Refuses to Order Lifting Restrictions in Kashmir, Will Take Up Matter in 2 Weeks

The bench said the present situation in Jammu and Kashmir was “very sensitive” and some time should be given for bringing back normalcy in the region.

This is the 9th day that Jammu and Kashmir has been cut off from all communications, including phones – both landline and mobile – and the internet.

Today, the Supreme Court heard a plea seeking lifting of all restrictions imposed after the reading down of Article 370. The court refused to pass any direction to the Centre and the Jammu and Kashmir government, saying that the present situation in the state was “very sensitive” and some time should be given for bringing back normalcy in the region.

The bench also said that it should be ensured that there is no loss of life there.

Living on a prayer

In his article Fired at For Assembling After Prayers: How Srinagar Spent Its Eid, Mudasir Ahmad reports that silence, all pervading, was occasionally broken by a loud warning or the piercing whistle of a paramilitary trooper in riot gear.

Police vans fitted with public address systems ask people to stay indoors, warning of dire consequences in case of violations of this order. The roads are deserted. At every junction, lines of razor-sharp concertina wire divide the main road into caged blocks. Even the link routes leading to mohallas are blocked.

For the first time in several years, the authorities also sealed the historic Jamia Masjid, Eidgah and Dargah in Srinagar, not allowing Eid prayers to take place there.

All over the Valley, people were instead asked to pray at local mosques. A government official said the decision was taken following apprehensions that an “assembly of people” could turn into a law and order situation.

At uptown Natipora, people, including several women, staged a protest after security forces fired teargas shells on a congregation which had assembled following Eid prayers. At least two canisters were visible lying on the road after the firing was over.

“This is their Eid gift to the people of Kashmir,” a man was heard shouting angrily from within the crowd. “In the evening, the news channels [in the mainland] will show how Kashmir is peaceful.”

“I am a butcher and I am on my way to slaughter a sacrificial sheep nearby. Please let me go,” a young man was heard asking a man in uniform at the Lal Bazaar Bus Stand.

“Go back. There are strict restrictions not to allow anyone to come out of their homes today,” the uniformed man shouted back. The butcher turned back.

With Independence Day just two days away it is unlikely that the curfew will be relaxed in the Valley soon.

The murder of humanity

“And I say with all respect to our constitution that it just does not matter what your constitution says; if the people of Kashmir do not want it, it will not go there. Because what is the alternative? The alternative is compulsion and coercion.”
 Jawaharlal Nehru, 1952.

In a magisterial essay that you need to set aside at least 30 minutes for, the constitutional expert A.G. Noorani writes of the Murder of Insaniyat, and of India’s Solemn Commitment to Kashmir.

He says, “Kashmir’s mainstream leaders should prepare a manifesto of the United Movement of Kashmir and take to the streets, after renouncing all forms of violence, and assert their right to freedom of speech and freedom to move in peaceful procession.“”… Have you ever heard of a state robbing its regions of autonomy because they have suffered terrorist attacks? But, of course, this is a sham. The nearly 40-page Bill must have taken weeks to prepare. It scraps the constitution of the state of Jammu and Kashmir adopted by its elected constituent assembly and imposes on it constitutional provisions on which the views of the state’s assembly were not sought.”

He makes the case that the motive behind the whole game of dividing the state and pushing for delimitation of seats is that the BJP aspires to increase the number of seats in Jammu and, thus, its strength in the J&K assembly so as to woo some independents in the Valley and form a BJP government.

He quotes Nehru’s writing to Vallabhai Patel on the dangers of trifurcating the state, saying, “If Hindu communalists could organise a movement in Jammu, why should not Muslim communalists function in Kashmir? The position now is that if there was a plebiscite, a great majority of Muslims in Kashmir would go against us.

... In the ultimate analysis, we gain Kashmir if we gain the goodwill of the people there. We cannot keep it at the point of the bayonet if it is clear that the people do not want us. For the first time, public cries are raised in Kashmir that the Indian Army should get out.’’

Noorani says, “In the entire exercise, vile passions have triumphed over elementary concern with the law. The presidential order is patently unconstitutional.”

He explains that legislative skulduggery emerges in Clause 2(d) of the president’s order. It amends Article. 370 (3) to say that the expression “Constituent Assembly of the State” referred to in clause (3) of Article 370 “shall read ‘Legislative Assembly of the State’.” This is shocking.

He argues that Kashmir has been reduced to a colony.

He ends on a worrisome note, saying, “One fears that the Modi government will go further still. On July 20, 2019, defence minister Rajnath Singh said in threatening words: “Resolution of Kashmir issue is bound to happen and no power on earth can stop it. If not through talks, then we know how.” Plans for a crackdown were in place.

As the historian of ancient Rome, Tacitus, said “They created desolation and call it peace”. The people of Kashmir will not submit to it. Rise they will.”