Pragmatic | 2011: The most peaceful year in Kashmir

The data says it all

Greater Kashmir newspaper (and it is not an India-friendly publication) gets hold of police data on militancy-related incidents in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Here is a quick recap:

  • 189 militancy related incidents in 2011, compared to 488 in 2010
  • 183 militancy related casualties in 2011, compared to 375 in 2010
  • 34 civilians and 30 security personnel died while 119 militants were killed in 2011, compared to 36 civilians, 69 security personnel and 270 militants in 2010
  • 4 districts with “double digit” incidents of militancy: Srinagar, Baramulla, Kupwara and Pulwama in Kashmir region
  • 13 districts with “single digit” incidents of militancy: Budgam, Ganderbal, Kulgam, Anantnag, Shopian and Bandipora in Kashmir region; Kishtwar, Ramban, Doda, Poonch, Rajouri and Udhampur in Jammu region
  • 7 districts are militancy-free: Leh and Kargil districts of Ladakh region; Samba, Jammu, Kathua, Reasi and Doda districts of Jammu region

After the turbulent summer of 2010, it was a huge turn-around for the state in 2011.  It left many self-styled Kashmir analysts with egg on their faces. If the state government headed by Omar Abdullah got the flak for its inept handling of the situation in 2010, it justifiably deserves credit for what it achieved last year. Of course, the stinginess in praise comes as no surprise considering the hypocritical nature of our left-liberal commentators. Thankfully, it doesn’t matter as long as the situation on the ground is evident to everyone — and can be backed by data.

Does it mean there isn’t anyone left in Kashmir who still wants Azadi (though no two persons can define Azadi the same way) and harbours anti-India sentiments? Of course, there are more than a handful of that variety in certain urban pockets of Kashmir Valley. But as long as the state is able to ensure peace and security for the majority of Kashmiris, the anti-India ruck doesn’t matter. You need an environment where students can attend schools, a shopkeeper can open his shop, a dailywager can earn his daily wage, a transporter can ply his truck, a farmer can sell his produce and tourists can visit the state without having to worry about a grenade or a bomb going off. Maintaining peace and ensuring security is essential, though not sufficient for attaining normalcy in Kashmir. The state government has been able to get the essential part right.

Building on this reduction in militancy, the state assembly has approved the amendments to the much-maligned Public Safety Act. Of course, this development has gone unnoticed lest it forces some commentators to acknowledge the good work put in by the state government.

DISCLAIMER: This is an archived post from the Indian National Interest blogroll. Views expressed are those of the blogger's and do not represent The Takshashila Institution’s view.