Wailing Valley: Shut for four months, the longest in history
It has been four months and normalcy has not returned to Jammu and Kashmir. Ironically this the longest that the Valley has been shut down. Officials in the security establishment say that it may take sometime before normalcy returns to the Valley.
There are two problems today that the Valley faces. First, the Hurriyat Conference which routinely issues calendar of protests. Secondly it is the large number of terrorists who have infiltrated into the Valley and target security postings at will.
The brunt of all this is being borne by the common man. The loss is estimated at around Rs 10,000 crore. Trade analysts say that the Valley which has been shutdown for four months suffers a loss of Rs 120 crore a day.
A long way to go
There is security in place, but people are scared to venture out. One police official says that they have assured the people, but they seem to be afraid. The problem is that the Hurriyat Conference sends out its men to pelt stones if they see normalcy being restored in any form, the officer also notes.
The other issue is of the terrorists who have infiltrated in large numbers. Counter insurgency operations are underway, but to eliminate nearly a 100 of them would take a considerable amount of time. The only good news is that the security forces have managed to prevent fresh infiltrations into the Valley thanks to enhanced security along the border with Paksitan.
The vehicle owners are afraid to come out. There have been several instances where vehicles have been targeted by the men of the Hurriyat Conference.
Currently there are 5,000 public transport vehicles which are not plying. The losses are only increasing and the tourism industry which had started looking up, has taken a major hit.
At least 14,000 people have been injured and 90 killed in the violence. Schools too have taken a major hit. The examinations are approaching and will be held in November.
However, many doubt if the parents will send their children to schools in such a scenario. The banking sector too has taken a major hit. In many banks the work hours are limited and only those living close to the banks have been asked to work. The female employees have, however, been told to stay at home.