Editorial | Displaced populations

GK Photo

Living on the edge is always a peril. If anyone wants to understand what it means to live at  a place that comprises a dividing line between two hostile powers, the villages near the LoC constitute the best explanation. It is not the first that these people are forced to leave their huts and hearths and look for some safe shelter. It has happened many time in the past and each time people in these villages are the first victims of the hostilities. Though they finally move into the near by villages that are relatively safer, and the relatives and acquaintances come to their rescue, but that is not the solutions to the immense agonies faced by these people. Imagine a poor family, with little children, and aged parents, running for some shelter in the face of hostilities between two militaries sitting face to face on this Line. With no resources to move and settle somewhere else what can such families do in these trying times. Some time back an idea was floated that this vulnerable population should have been shifted to some safer places permanently, and that would constitute a final solution to this problem.

While making such opinions we act with simplistic mindsets. We forget it is not just about homes, it is a complete ecosystem that constitutes their living in these areas. They are culturally tied to these areas, and most importantly their economies are situated in these areas. It is not easy for them to move permanently. Their economic activities are all rooted in the lands they live in. Most of these people are dependent on agricultural activities, or pastoral practices. This all is dependant on the land. So displacing these people, and settling them somewhere else entails tremendous problems for them.  The lasting, and the real, solution to all such problems, around the globe, is to look into the reasons of the hostilities. It is for the top leadership of the countries that are involved in such hostilities to come forward on the negotiating table and settle the differences. If that doesn’t happen people around the world, in these border areas, will keep suffering.