Killings of civilians have created climate of fear in Kashmir: PAGD

Killings of civilians have created climate of fear in Kashmir: PAGD
Police personnel inside the school premises in Srinagar where suspected militants fatally shot two teachers, on Thursday 7 Oct 2021. Mubashir Khan for Greater Kashmir

Srinagar: The People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration today condemned the recent civilian killings in the Valley, and said “these killings have created a climate of fear that has not been seen in Kashmir since the early 1990s”.

The PAGD said this in a meeting convened by it at the residence of Dr. Farooq Abdullah to take stock of the current situation prevailing in Jammu & Kashmir, a PAGD handout said.

The meeting was attended by PDP president Mehbooba Mufti, CPI (M) leader Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami and NC leader Justice (Retd) Hasnain Masoodi.

“The PAGD unreservedly condemns the recent killings of innocent people in the Valley. These killings have created a climate of fear that has not been seen in Kashmir since the early 90s,” the statement said.

“The current situation prevailing in Jammu & Kashmir is the result of the failure of the policies of the government that have brought Jammu & Kashmir to this point. Whether it was demonetization or removal of Article 370, these decisions were sold to the country as a solution to the problems of militancy and alienation in Kashmir,” it said.

The statement said: “Today it has been shown without any doubt that neither demonetization nor the removal of Article 370 have contributed to improving the security situation in J&K. In fact, some recent decisions of the Jammu & Kashmir administration have only served to heighten differences between the communities that otherwise were living peacefully amongst each other.

“The onus to create a conducive security environment lies with the Government of India, however, we as responsible political parties of Jammu & Kashmir will play our role to the best of our ability to reduce the levels of suspicion and fear.

“While it is true that the majority of the civilian deaths in Kashmir have been (of) Muslims, it does not absolve us of our responsibility to do everything in our power to help those who belong to religious minorities to feel secure and we appeal to those who may be considering fleeing the Valley to reconsider their decision.

“In the meeting of Political Leaders with the Hon'ble Prime Minister on 24th June, 2021, the Prime Minister acknowledged ‘Dil Ki Doori ore Dili Say Doori’ while promising to correct this distance. Unfortunately, nothing has been done in this regard since that meeting. Arbitrary detentions and excessive use of force continue to be the norm in Jammu and Kashmir.

“The killing of Yasir Ali (sic) yesterday evening is the direct result of the heightened state of alert and justification for use of force. Harassment of innocent civilians and the killings like Yasir Ali (sic) will only serve to worsen the situation in Jammu & Kashmir. The administration must do everything possible to ensure that shoot at sight policy is not adopted by the Security Forces.”

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