The Right to an effective Government; Kashmir and Jammu

Narendra Modi

On August 5, 2019, the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, (BJP, Bharatiya Janata Party "Indian People's Party") proposed, through the Minister of the Interior, Amit Shah, in the seat of the Parliament of India (Bhāratīya Sansad), specifically in its upper house (Rajya Sabha or "Council of States") the repeal of Article 370 of the Constitution, which gave a special status to Jammu and Kashmir. The region had had a special status for over seventy years, since the partition of India and Pakistan in 1947. Since then the area has been deprived of effective government and political stability enjoyed by other parts of both India and Pakistan.  The region of Kashmir is divided into three regions, of which Ladakh has a majority Buddhist population, Kashmir, which is mostly Muslim, and Jammur, which is mostly Hindu. The region is one of the richest in the world in cultural terms, and one of the most strategic in geopolitical terms. Frictions with Pakistan have been constant since 1947, even having been forcing to leave from Kashmir more than two hundred thousand Hindus, thus allowing Muslims to be the majority in the region. The UN allowed this forced exodus to take place, and the displaced have never had the opportunity to return to their homeland. The UN's recommendations have never been followed by the Pakistani-backed militias, which almost continuously provoked gunfire on the border with India. The region of Kashmir, which is mostly Muslim thanks to the displaced Hindus, has been home to Pakistani-led separatist movements since the 1990s. But on August 6, 2019, the procedure was carried out in the lower chamber of India, or Lok Sabha ("The House of the People"), in which the article that provided Kashmir with the provisional territorial status it had acquired since 1947 was removed from the Indian constitution.

Members of the Lashkar e taiba armed group, who have strong ties to Pakistan

For the government of Pakistan this proposal was contrary to the resolutions of the United Nations, since there were successive resolutions that had been issued by the UN Security Council, among others the holding of a referendum. The region in these decades has suffered countless violence and shortages due to the lack of an effective government resulting from the status granted by the UN, and from the Pakistani side has failed to provide effective assistance to the region, beyond supporting armed groups that have violated the ceasefire on numerous occasions. From India, they believe that it is clear that the resolutions have been violated with the use of violent militias linked to Pakistan and with the forced displacement of thousands of Hindus, whose objective was surely to alter the result of a referendum that was never held because of the UN's ineffectiveness. For that reason, Mr. Shah specified in the parliamentary seat that the region would be reorganized from the organization that fixed Kashmir as a region of the north and Jammu as a region of the south, to another type of territorial organization. The region was once again regaining its right to effective government, a right it had been deprived of decades ago.

CONSEQUENCES OF AMENDMENT OF ARTICLE 370 AND REVOCATION OF ARTICLE ...This action was part of the election promises set out in a manifesto that preceded the resounding victory in the general elections held between 11 April and 19 May 2019 to elect the 543 members of the Lok Sabha, and which the BJP - National Democratic Alliance won by winning 353 seats (17 more than in the previous elections), with a considerable advantage over the CNI - Indian National Congress of Rahul Gandhi (87 seats, 27 more than in the previous elections). This contributes to trying to form a stronger state and standardize a culture.

The new territorial organization implies the direct governance of New Delhi, which has dissolved the pre-existing structures to give way to other types of structures with which to fulfill the political program and electoral promises of the BJP. The purpose has been to correct "a historical mistake", and to prepare the way for a path of prosperity, peace, and development in the region. After the 2014 elections, the BJP formed a coalition with the PDP, the People's Democratic Party of the late Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, with the idea of forming a government. With this idea they reached an agreement between the BJP and the PDP on the basis of a common minimum program that should channel and resolve the Kashmir issue... but Mehooba Mufti, who succeeded his father Mufti Mahammad Sayeed, failed to address the situation in Kashmir, so the BJP left the government coalition.

For the BJP government, the balance of this year can be considered positive after a year of the repeal of Article 370. To this end, different axes are addressed in which New Delhi would have made an effort, and which include ideas such as a participatory grassroots democracy, since according to official data 98% of those called to the polls would have exercised their right at the village level. In addition, there are policies of positive discrimination for women within the framework of general policy and 170 million euros have been invested in local development.

Work has also been done to stimulate education, employment and entrepreneurship, as the creation of 25,000 educational places has been promoted through the training of 50 educational institutions, 500,000 scholarships have been granted, and preference has been given to residents in access to public employment. It also reports on a policy of creating and starting up companies with a vision of the future; and, Invention, Innovation and Incubation Centers have been created through business and training centers. 500 development projects have been completed, together with an investment of 1130 million Euros in the Light Railway system, 790 million Euros have been invested in 190 Intelligent Cities initiatives, in addition to investing 850 million Euros in health infrastructure and the formation of two computer parks.

Kashmir mountains

As for the agricultural sector, one of the fundamental axes in the structure of Great Power in India, the direct acquisition of 15,000 metric tons of Kashmir apples has been carried out, and a saffron trade center with global reach has been created, all of which is linked to the unified national market of agricultural products.

In terms of social aspects, work has been done to guarantee the rights of those who are most disadvantaged by extending the central laws and repealing or modifying obsolete laws. An integrated social security plan for transsexuals has been established and 800,000 student health cards have been issued. Free water and electricity connections have been established, reaching 300,000 remote homes.

Pakistan would conceive the Kashmir region in religious terms. The vision that India claims to have for Kashmir is that of one more part of its territory where there are Indian nationals, within a modern, secular and pluralist democracy, where there is room for 180 million citizens who are Muslims. In fact, in the region there is a certain balance between four different religious conceptions or philosophical and spiritual doctrines, where each one of them is the majority in each area. Thus, in the Valley of Kashmir, 95% of the inhabitants would be Muslims, and 4% Hindus. In Jammu the Hindus would be 66& , with 28% Muslim and 4% Sikhs. In Ladakh, 50% would be Buddhists, 44% Muslim and 5% Hindus. One year after India's decision, indicators points that development in the region has accelerated more than in many previous decades. The right to effective government should be an inalienable right for all regions suffering from institutional neglect due to disputes between states, which have only spurious interests in regions suffering from the consequences of harmful territorial regulations imposed by international bodies.

[i] When the country's constitution was approved on November 26, 1949 and with its entry into force on January 26, 1950.

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