Wednesday, May 23, 2018
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Mixed signals
Some signs of thaw between India-Pakistan don't gel well with renewed hostility at borders
Other than lacing his speech in Srinagar with phrases of mis-pronounced Kashmiri sentences, prime minister Narendra Modi, during his recent visit, made no efforts to reach out to the people and also dropped virtually no hints of carrying forward the peace process meaningfully. Going about the usual rhetoric of bringing back "misguided youth" into the mainstream and hastening up pace of development, he had nothing to offer in terms of announcing confidence building measures to ease the stifling atmosphere that could showcase the sincerity of the union government in resolving the Kashmir issue. This silence coupled with his ambivalence on relations with Pakistan arouses skepticism. The huge scale of border shelling and firing in Arnia sector of Jammu province on Saturday, the day he arrived...
Kashmir Times News Report
Deaths in border clashes
Rulers in both India and Pakistan need to realize futility of animosity and instead engage in dialogue for peace and stability in the region
Deaths of a Border Security Force (BSF) jawan and four civilians on the Indian side of the International Border (IB) in Jammu region and four civilians including three children in the border shelling between the Indian and Pakistani forces last week is unfortunate. It is all the more tragic that the civilians on both sides of the IB lost their lives for no fault of theirs a day before the prime minister Narendra Modi’s day-long visit to Jammu and Kashmir. This is one of the incidents in a series of alleged ceasefire violations on the borders in J&K in which precious lives are lost and the working in the agricultural fields by farmers on both sides of the border are disrupted due to continued animosity between India and Pakistan for the last seven decades. The peace on the borders occasion...
Kashmir Times News Report
Truce comes calling. What next?
By Anuradha Bhasin Jamwal
On the face of it, the ceasefire announcement for Kashmir made by union home minister Rajnath Singh sounds good. But it needs to be taken with Shakespeare's note of caution: All that glitters is not gold. What is the purpose of any truce call? Does it signify a brief break from the violence or is it aimed at achieving the purpose of making a transition from military handling of a conflict to a political one? If it is the former, there is nothing to expect other than a possible and not so possible lull of few days. As for the latter, the signs don't seem visible. Ceasefire is not an end in itself but a means to achieve an end. It can either be a useful tool for building a comprehensive peace process that is in the making or be introduced as a confidence building measure to lay the edif...
Kashmir Times News Report
SC directive on floor test
The BJP appears to be a bad loser in the power play of politics in Karnataka where it cannot claim victory over other parties
The Supreme Court directive on Friday to Karnataka chief minister B S Yeddyurappa to prove his majority in a floor test in Legislative Assembly by 4.00 PM tomorrow is a welcome decision amid high-voltage drama that has been going on for the last three days. The directive to this effect was issued on a petition filed by Congress and Janata Dal-S combine challenging the governor Vajubhai R Vala's decision to invite Yeddyurappa and swearing in him as chief minister on Wednesday despite the fact the BJP had only 104 members falling short of at least 8 MLAs to cross the half-way mark. The directive that the present chief minister cannot take any policy decision till the floor test is over is also a welcome decision. This is mainly is the light of some transfers ordered by Yeddyurappa after his...
Kashmir Times News Report
Political drama in Karnataka
The governor has thrown all constitutional and democratic norms to winds for swearing in of BJP chief minister
The developments on the political front are moving in a predictable manner in Karnataka after the ruling Congress lost and BJP could not register a clear victory while Janata Dal-S remained at the third place with three independents after the polls results were declared on Tuesday. The parading of 117 MLAs of Congress and JD-S combine at Raj Bhavan failed to impress the Governor. The latter went ahead with swearing in ceremony of B S Yeddyurappa as chief minister on Thursday morning taking the cover that BJP has emerged as the single-largest party in the state. The overnight unfolding of the political drama and urgent hearing spread over three and a half hours by the Supreme Court early this morning did not help Congress and JD-S combine. The Congress and JD-S seeking stay on the swearing...
Kashmir Times News Report
Lessons from Karnataka
The only way to counter the increasing Hindutva constituency is opposition unity
The hung assembly thrown up by the Karnataka elections opens up the floor to the possibility of a Congress-JD(S) coalition government, a claim that has already been publicly staked, or the bid by the BJP to engage in horse-trading. BJP has emerged as the single largest party but falls short by 7 seats. The Congress with 78 seats and JD (S) with 37 can comfortably sail across the requisite half way mark for forming the government. Given this possibility of post poll alliance and the lack of majority with the BJP, the Congress-JD(S) alliance has an advantage. In any case, a post poll alliance is any day better than the proposition of poaching for legislators which underlines the excessively corrupt practices in politics. The ball, however, is in the governor's court as to who he would invit...
Kashmir Times News Report
BJP's hypocrisy
Nirmal Singh-Army showdown on land construction raises many questions that need a fair investigation
Jammu and Kashmir state legislative assembly Speaker, Dr Nirmal Singh's tussle with the army over the construction on a piece of land adjacent to an ammunition depot in Nagrota betrays the hypocrisy of the BJP and unearths many a skeletons in the cupboards of their leaders. Singh has alleged harassment by the army, while army has maintained that the under-construction building is a "potential safety hazard" for the army's ammunition depot and "is violative of a notification issued by the Jammu district administration banning construction activity within 1000 yards of the boundary wall of the depot". But by giving it the angle of 'harassment by army' Nirmal Singh has churned up an entirely new debate which the Hindu right wing including BJP is the first to stamp down in the name of nationa...
Kashmir Times News Report
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