It needed to be said and there’s no better person that Chief of Army Staff General Bipin Rawat to say it straight: Indian citizens of the Kashmir Valley should understand that what they claim as azaadi (freedom) but which is actually secession will never, ever come to pass. And that the Islamist-Terrorist-Pakistan-PsyOps-Stone throwing combine cannot take on the Indian Army and hope to survive to tell the tale.
He added, for good measure, that the Indian Security Forces have shown massive restraint unlike, say, the Pakistani and Syrian armies fighting secessionism in their respective countries which have gone into their troubled regions with a scorched earth policy complete with tanks, air bombardment and heavy artillery. And before the usual suspects begin moaning about how the Chief is diminishing the Indian Army by comparing it to that of rogue nations, let it be said that the examples provided were probably deliberate and definitely apposite given the misuse of religion to foster terrorism in the State of Jammu and Kashmir. No reductionism need be applied in analysing his assertion.
The Chief’s message is what our politicians must take to the youth, parents and civil society of Kashmir if they truly do not want innocent, brainwashed young men, our fellow Indian citizens, to be used as cannon fodder. Joining the mainstream as aspirational fellow citizens of an ancient nation and modern state in the making is the way forward.
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