Introduction to Blog

I launched the website and the Blog after having spoken to government officials, political analysts and security experts specializing in South Asian affairs from three continents. The feedback was uniformly consistent. The bottom line is that when Kashmiris are suffering and the world has its own set of priorities, we need to find ways to help each other. We must be realistic, go beyond polemics and demagoguery, and propose innovative ideas that will bring peace, justice and prosperity in all of Jammu and Kashmir.

The author had two reasons to create this blog. First, it was to address the question that was being asked repeatedly, especially, by journalists and other observers in the U.S., U.K., and Canada, inquiring whether the Kashmiri society was concerned about social, cultural and environmental challenges in the valley given that only political upheaval and violence were reported or highlighted by media.

Second, the author has covered the entire spectrum of societal issues and challenges facing Kashmiri people over an 8-year period with the exception of politics given that politics gets all the exposure at the expense of REAL CHALLENGES that will likely result in irreversible degradation in the quality of life and the standard of living for future generations of Kashmiris to come.

The author stopped adding additional material to the Blog once it was felt that most, if not all, concerns, challenges and issues facing the Kashmiri society are cataloged in the Blog. There are over 1900 entries in the Blog and most commentaries include short biographical sketches of authors to bring readers close to the essence of Kashmir. Unfortunately, the 8-year assessment also indicates that neither Kashmiri civil society, nor intellectuals or political leadership have any inclination or enthusiasm in pursuing issues that do not coincide with their vested political agendas. What it means for the future of Kashmiri children and their children is unfathomable. But the evidence is all laid out.

This Blog is a reality check on Kashmir. It is a historical record of how Kashmir lost its way.

Vijay Sazawal, Ph.D.

Friday, March 20, 2009

NHRC Penalizes Indian Army for Fake Encounter in J&K

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) earns public trust with its independent investigation

NHRC raps Army for fake encounter, asks for compensation

New Delhi: Taking cognizance of Army excesses in an alleged fake encounter in Jammu and Kashmir, the National Human Rights Commission has asked Defence Ministry to pay Rs three lakh as compensation to the family of a youth, killed in the incident.

The Commission had taken suo motu cognizance of the killing nearly six years ago on the basis of a media report published on June 8, 2003.

Earlier, the Defence Ministry had failed to give its reply in connection with the killing.

In the incident, personnel of 119 Battalion of Assam Regiment were accused of killing of a Kashmiri youth, Javed Ahmed Magrey in a fake encounter, a charge which was later corroborated by a magistrate's inquiry and police probes as well.

The father of the deceased had also filed a case with Nowgam Police Station alleging that his son had been picked up by the Army and was later killed by them in a fake encounter.

While awarding the compensation, the NHRC noted that "the security forces are, no doubt, performing a very onerous duty in Jammu and Kashmir. They are operating in difficult terrain to fight terrorism at great risk to their lives.

"While their fight against terrorists deserves all support, the government has a duty to ensure that no harm is caused to innocent citizens."

No comments: