Pakistan editorial blasts India over BJP’s quitting PDP-led coalition in J&K
With the BJP deciding to quit its ruling alliance with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Jammu and Kashmir, the "violence-torn region has been plunged into fresh political turmoil", an editorial in Pakistani daily Dawn said on Thursday, June 21.
Terming the collapse of the three-plus-year-old government as a "somewhat predictable but nevertheless spectacular failure", the editorial said this "may be the most dangerous phase yet".
"Some hopes were pinned on the aging Mufti Sayeed of the PDP moderating the policy preferences of a right-wing BJP national leadership and a so-called common minimum programme, the coalition's governance agenda, delivering political stability and economic growth," the editorial said.
"But few inside the coalition and virtually no one outside appeared to be convinced by the deal. The BJP's hawkish and communal electoral campaign helped deliver not just a hung assembly in IHK but an electorate that was sharply divided."
The piece said the cause of the problem lies much deeper than just a failure of governance. According to it, the previous coalition government in the state of the National Conference and Indian National Congress revealed "a fundamental, insurmountable problem" and that is: Kashmir's political parties fail to legitimately align themselves with national parties since the aspirations of the people of Kashmir cannot be reconciled with the demands of the federal state.
The editorial then blasted India saying Kashmir witnesses a "real, deep-rooted and continuing resentment against the repressive role of the state of India in the region". It also said that "despotic laws and a suffocating security presence are inimical to the just and moral political demands of a local population".
Taking a strong dig at the Narendra Modi government, the Dawn editorial said although it chose to speak a moderate language, its actions on the ground have been "malign" and it could be seen in every step the regime took.
It said with the onset of direct rule in the state now, speculation is rife that the Modi government was "preparing to unleash a new round of terror" - the target being the national elections scheduled in 2019.
"In reality, there is a genuine and growing freedom movement in IHK that the Indian security apparatus will not be able to crush with force, mass incarcerations or political machinations," the piece warned.
The Dawn piece also cited the recent report by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights which has criticised the situation in the state.
"While Indian repression has undoubtedly contributed to a growing rebellion among the people of IHK, an enduring rejection of federal Indian policies and practices towards the disputed region is what ensures that dissent survives and spreads," it said, adding that New Delhi "ought to recognise the inhumanity and folly of its approach to the disputed Kashmir region".