Editorial: A welcome decision

Srinagar: Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti’s announcement that the government will grant amnesty to all those young people who were involved in various cases during the unrest of 2016, is a welcome step.

The decision of the government in this regard will shape up the future discourse as the overwhelming support for violence as a means to achieve ends is finding very few takers in today’s world. For making this announcement to work on ground the government has ordered withdrawal of cases against 4327 youth and even constituted a committee to review the cases against youth registered during the unrest of 2016.

This decision has now taken the figure way beyond nine thousand, who have now been covered under the amnesty scheme. Though the announcement seems to have come a bit late but it should act as a new beginning for all stake holders to get the youth out of the morass of violence and endless killings.

The onus of capitalizing on the move lies greatly on the police and other security agencies as well. However, the local police will have to ensure that their greater role and participation should ensure maximum returns out of the announcement. 

Though the Police has been tasked to ensure that the local boys who have joined militant ranks should be helped to come back to their families and friends, the society too has to act wisely and get the youth involved in other forms of protest rather than resorting to violence.

Kashmir has seen lot of killings over the three decades now. We are fast losing our young men to violence as some sections in our society openly indulge in glorifying death and destruction. We as a society have to evolve into a right thinking society and protect our young ones from becoming easy targets for those who wish to use them to further their cause. 

Killing of civilians or even otherwise cannot be justified. Be it political activists or for that matter other civilians that are killed under the garb of being army informers or whatever-in unacceptable. The militant as well as the separatist leadership too have many a times offered their views on these issues and have condemned these killings.

Even senior separatist leaders like Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Mirwaiz Omar Farooq have made their views public and condemned the killings of innocents like the youth killed in Handwara last week. 

We live in a civilized setup where anybody can hold divergent views on issues and there is no harm in doing that. But using violence and intimidation to force ones ideology or political will on others is unfortunate and not a trait of a civilized society.



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