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“Character of Indian forces occupational in Kashmir”: Janhastakshep

Nazir Ganaie/ Waheed Yaseen

Srinagar: Recommending a six-point formula, a Delhi-based civil society group, ‘Janhastakshep, today stirred a new controversy by calling the character of Indian forces in Indian Kashmir as “occupational” and said the “unaccountability” enjoyed by the Army has now trickled down to the police and state administration.

The six-point formula which included respecting the democratic aspirations of the Kashmiri people, immediate revocation of the AFSPA, withdrawal of army from the Valley, investigations into the cases of excesses and punishment to the guilty, withdrawal of the false cases and release of guilty and initiation of political dialogue with people’s representatives.

A team of Janhastakshep which included journalists, lawyers, professors and a former diplomat had arrived in Kashmir valley on November 12 to “take a firsthand account of what is happening in Kashmir.”

“We always thought the main problem was AFSPA which makes Army unaccountable. But the cancer has spread further; the unaccountability has permeated to the police and state administration. Most of the people not only complained about Army but also about the police,” V K Ohri, a Supreme Court lawyer and member of the Janhastakshep team on a visit to Kashmir, told reporters here.

Another member of the team said that Army has developed “vested interests” in Jammu and Kashmir.
“The character of Indian forces in Kashmir is occupational,” they said.
The team also demanded a probe into the killing of 115 civilians who were killed since June.

“We demand an answer from both the (state and Centre) governments about why 115 men lost lives since June, Why? We demand a probe and guilty officers should be punished as per the law,” they said.

The group also said that they have found people across the political divide saying the “way to go is Azaadi.”

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