USI organizes webinar on ‘Evolving Politico-Security Paradigm in J&K’

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Feb 9: The United Service Institution (USI) of India organized a webinar on the topic “Evolving Politico-Security Paradigm in J&K”.
The focus of discussion was on the current geopolitical and security scenario in Jammu and Kashmir following the abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A in 2019. The event was chaired by Maj Gen (Retd) B K Sharma, Director USI and moderated by Dr Roshan Khanijo, Assistant Director Research, (CS3).
The panelists were Lt Gen (Retd) Ranbir Singh, former GOC-in-C Northern Command, Hamid Bashani, Javed Beigh, Ashok Bhan – Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of India and Anil Goswami, former Union Home Secretary of India.
Lt Gen (Retd) Ranbir Singh, while giving a military and strategic perspective, said that post August 5, 2020, Pakistan has been unable to increase infiltration in Kashmir valley, primarily due to the existence of a multi-tier counter-insurgency grid.
While suggesting India’s response to Pakistan’s nefarious designs in Kashmir, the former GOC-in-C said that India could use its position in diplomatic forums like United Nations (UN) to expose Pakistan’s real objectives and get the latter black-listed by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). “Though, India should continue with its strategy of punitive deterrence towards Pakistan, efforts to persuade the latter to shed terrorism for the greater good of the Indian Subcontinent should always be endeavored,” he said.
Ashok Bhan, who is also Chairman of Kashmir Policy & Strategy, said that Kashmir future is destined with the land of opportunities that is India and its democracy and secular ethos. “Now that people have exercised the preference for democratic means to advocate their legitimate issues, Pakistan should keep off Kashmir and allow Kashmiris to pick up a peaceful and terror free life for future,” he said and also stressed that the Indian State must provide requisite conditions to facilitate the process of rehabilitation of the minority groups back to their roots in Kashmir valley.
Civil society activist Javed Beigh said that there exists palpable anger and resentment in the people of PoK against Pakistan’s colonial approach. “However, this has yet to manifest into large scale public demonstration due to the fact that a significant number of military personnel hail from the area,” he added.
Barrister Hamid Bashani of PoK said the region of PoK and GB legally belongs to India. “So far Pakistan has been pro-active in flagging the Kashmir issue at the UN. The time has come for India to call Pakistan’s bluff at the UN and bolster its legitimate claims to the entire region, including the Shaksgam Valley,” he stressed.
Former Union Home Secretary Anil Goswami said that ever since the abrogation of Article 370, the Government’s focus has been to usher in economic prosperity and development in the region by not just extending the ongoing Union policies and programmes, but also, by bringing in novel region specific reforms.