Resolution not Management

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The administration is mulling an amnesty for “second time stone pelting offenders” in Kashmir. This is in the nature of a follow up step or measure to the review of “first time offenders”. On the face of it, this measure appears to be a good faith one where the administration is attempting to rehabilitate those found involved in stone pelting in Kashmir. It brooks no debate that once an individual is on the radar of the police or his record is besmirched, by some act on his part, then a dark blot hangs over his future. However, much as the administration’s method may sound or seem salubrious, it smacks of a paternalistic approach, akin to one where the police adopts in dealing with juvenile delinquency. This means that the administration is getting the causality wrong by either misdiagnosing it or choosing to do so. The prosaic fact of the matter is that the stone pelting is an effect whose cause(s) flow from the conflict in Kashmir dimension of the larger conflict. It bears mention here that the psyche and the emotional world(s) of Kashmiris, especially the youth of the region, is structured by the conflict in and over Kashmir. This very condition renders the material condition or reality of Kashmir’s youth into a cacophony of conflict. What then gets manifested actually flows from the conflict, in which the psychological and emotional state of Kashmiris is embedded in. From this perspective, reviewing cases of stone pelters is a micro management technique that might or might not stand the stone pelters in good stead but actually ignores the larger realities. In this sense then, prudence and sobriety warrant that instead of management and formulaic techniques, the larger ideational and material realities of Kashmir, which is the conflict, be understood and attempted to be resolved. The first step lies in recognition of underlying realities. Till now it has been observed that powers that be choose to ignore these. This is perhaps where the problem lies. Diagnosis, to take recourse to a metaphor, is the fundamental condition of a cure, in prosaic dimensions of life. The same holds true for Kashmir. But, a proper and accurate diagnosis, calls for a sober resolve based on genuineness and sincerity of purpose, which seems to be missing in the history of the conflict. The manifestations of conflict should, instead of, yielding management techniques, give way to a conflict resolution approaches and paradigms that redound to the benefit of all.