The Saga should End

  • 3

Another civilian has lost his life in Kashmir. Adding up the numbers of civilian lives and then pointing these out would constitute dishonor to the dead. But, this would not detract from the fact that civilians, most often , at the peak of their lives have become victims and lost what is of supreme value in this world: life. It would appear that yesterday’s victim was at the “wrong place, at the wrong time”, so to speak. But this neither in the nature of justification of the young man’s killing or nor to put it into perspective. These is no and can be no perspective on death except that of a loss and a void in the victim’s near and dear ones, which can never be fulfilled. The obvious question that killings of this nature give rise to is: why do these happen? No definitive answers can be posited in response to this question. But, the fact is and remains is that people die. Ironically, the latest killing has happened when India is about to celebrate Republic Day. The cardinal and indelible feature of a Republic day of any country is to celebrate the canonical virtues of life, liberty and happiness for the people. These philosophical (yet real) points lie at the heart of any Republic. But, in Kashmir, these either operate in isolation (that too in a warped way) or are rather absent. There can neither be liberty nor happiness for an individual who’s dead. (From a spiritual religious point of view there is but we are here talking about worldly life and its conditions). While there can be no micro level answer or justification of civilian killing in Kashmir, during encounters between the armed forces and militants, at a macro level, the answer stares us in the face. And, it actually pertains to the conflict in and over Kashmir. This macro rationale envelops life in Kashmir and civilian and other killings are a manifestation of this larger conflict in which life in Kashmir is embedded in. As long as the conflict exists, these disastrously fatal things will happen. No amount of so called “sanitization” or SOP’s will help. The onus therefore lies on the conflictual conditions in Kashmir. And, if there has to be zero casualties and fatalities of this nature, then the obvious candidate of choice for obviating these in totality lies in resolving the conflict in and over Kashmir. There really is no other way. Let sober and prudent minds mull over this and let this multi stakeholder paradigm of conflict resolution be developed, adapted and implemented in toto.