Condemn the continuing reign of terror against the Kashmiri people!
The Central government is continuing on the course of trying to crush the revolt of the Kashmiri people against state terrorism and for their national rights by brute force. This is clear from the fact that the armed forces of the Indian state have escalated their reign of terror on the people of Kashmir. They have viciously targeted entire areas of various towns, in the name of catching “militants”. This can be seen from the experience of the people of Baramulla town.
House-to-house searches and arrests have been carried out in the old part of Baramulla town from early morning on Tuesday 18th October 2016 onwards. The armed forces, including the army, Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Border Security Force (BSF) and local police, first cordoned off the old city area with bullet-proof vehicles before 5 am. Residents were not allowed to go out of the area while the security forces split into teams and combed each house in the area. The operation continued for over 12 hours; more than forty people were arrested for being ‘militant’.
Baramulla town is a place which has seen constant protests in this period. Every Friday, people have been taking out massive processions which are often confronted and broken up by the police using tear gas, pellet guns and other weapons. At least one hundred people in Baramulla have received severe pellet gun injuries and several have been blinded.
This is the latest escalation in the siege which the Indian state is carrying out in Kashmir. For over four months now, people of Kashmir have been coming out on to the streets protesting the atrocities of the Indian state and demanding their rights. The Indian state has resorted to barbaric methods, including blinding of children and young protestors using pellet guns, in its bid to stifle the mass movement of the Kashmiri people. It is reported that up to 9,000 people have been arrested and detained in Kashmir in the last two months alone. Several hundred people have been arrested under the fascist Public Safety Act (PSA), which allows the authorities to keep a person in jail from 6 to 24 months without even a judicial hearing.
Simultaneously, the Central government has launched a massive disinformation campaign to discredit the fighting people of Kashmir amongst the other people of India. It has portrayed the fighting Kashmiri people as terrorists and separatists, and vilified the struggle of the people as “Pakistan instigated”.
Far from getting cowed down by the barbaric attacks on them and the massive disinformation and vilification campaign, the people of Kashmir remain firm in their resolve to fight for their rights. It is reported that women and girls are joining the protest actions in larger numbers.
As part of its disinformation campaign, the central state is pushing the worn out line that by “providing employment” to Kashmiri youth, it will be able to take the youth away from the path of struggle. In this regard, it is reportedly trying to hire youth into the Kashmir police. This must be seen in the light of reported large scale desertions in the Kashmir police in the past few months.
The extent of resentment in the Kashmiri youth can be gauged from their reactions at a function organised by the Union government in New Delhi in which 580 youth from the Valley had been brought to attend. The government was using the function to advertise launch of a new service system for communication in Kashmir. When the media began interviewing these youth about their expectations, they condemned the scheme as a farce, when the same government had shut down Internet services in whole of Kashmir for over three months. Further, these youth raised slogans for self-determination and condemned state terrorism. Such is the pent up anger of the people of Kashmir, at the injustices perpetrated by the Indian state.
The struggle of the Kashmiri people against state terror and for their national rights is a just struggle. The Communist Ghadar Party condemns the continuing reign of terror unleashed by the Indian state against the Kashmiri people. The state terror must immediately end. The armed forces must be withdrawn to the barracks and AFSPA must be repealed.