What is happening in Jammu and Kashmir? An International​ News Event

Jammu and Kashmir.

Most of us do not know of this place or what is even happening there. Before coming to OU, I was not knowledgeable of the state or its events.

Jammu and Kashmir is a state located on the northern side of India. Up until recently, Jammu and Kashmir had a level or regional independence that other states in India did not have; today, this is not the case. After the Hindu Nationalistic Party of India revoked Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, Jammu and Kashmir have lost a level of autonomy previously held before. The party’s goal is to take control of the state and allow non-Muslim people to inhabit the area. As a result of this new policy, opposition and protest have ensued. The Indian government has since then enforced strict crackdowns on dissenters of this decision but have also begun to ruthlessly target the Muslim inhabitants of the state and have subjected them to all modes of violence without probable cause.

According to a news article from Al Jazeera, a large number of people have been arrested, detained, beaten, and tortured at random if any signs of ant-Indian government sentiment is recognized. Many people live in fear of being targeted by security forces. In the article, one Kashmir man described the extent of his injuries as being inhumane. This 22-year-old man was beaten so severely with sticks and weapons, and he even was electrocuted. There is a photograph of the man’s swollen and bruised legs, which puts into perspective the amount of agony he must have experienced during the ordeal. Men who are detained are usually sent away to an undisclosed location and are often not heard from for a while or ever again because communication in the state is sometimes inaccessible.

So why is this important? Is what is happening to the people of Jammu and Kashmir having anything to do with American interest? Technically no, the crackdown in the state does not directly affect me; however, that should not prohibit me from being concerned for the safety and well-being of the people there. There are clear signs that human rights violations are happening within the state. The people are unlawfully taken into custody without due process of the law and are at the will of abuse by law enforcement. If they speak out about these atrocities, they are subjected to more of the same. In America, we can freely express our opposition to specific policies that we disagree with without fear of repression, but in India, this is not so. The Indian government ought to be held accountable for the level of treatment directed towards the people of the state by the United Nations to stop these acts. The international community is continuously allowing the Indian government to instill terror among the hearts and minds of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.

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