May 17, 2022

Great Indian Mutiny

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Indian Kashmir is searching the homes of those accused of harboring insurgents

This content was released on April 13, 2022 – 08:07

Srinagar (India), ap. 13 (EFE) .- The decision of the Indian Kashmir Police to search the homes of those who gave refuge to the insurgents has caused outrage among the people of the valley. The most militarized and disputed areas in the world by India and Pakistan.

A house in Srinagar, the region’s main city, has become the first private property to go into police custody after two insurgents were killed in a shooting last Sunday.

Controversy

“We demand the property of all the people in case of an encounter (a term commonly used for clashes between security forces and insurgents) or as a hideout for terrorists,” said Vijay Kumar, Inspector General of the Indian Kashmir Police.

Authorities confirm that houses and other private property will be sought only if it is proven “beyond any doubt” that locals have “voluntarily” given refuge to the rebels in neighboring Pakistan.

A police official, who did not want to be named, told Efe that “there are many measures to hide the identity” of individuals who denounce the presence of insurgents on their property, so that their house can be prevented from being demanded later.

But in a Muslim-majority area that has been plagued by violence for decades, residents and critics say the new move could further drag the public into conflict.

An unnamed political activist told Efe that “this is an attempt to drag ordinary people into armed conflict” and “force” them to become police correspondents.

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Damage to private property

Indo-administered Kashmir has witnessed three decades of armed independence insurgency, described by New Delhi as a terrorist massacre that has claimed tens of thousands of lives since 1989, most of them civilians.

Conflicts often lead to gun battles around homes and cities, using heavy weapons against homes to kill rooted insurgents or force security forces to surrender without danger, severely damaging buildings.

Both activists and residents denounce it as a kind of punishment against the public who often see how their homes are being demolished.

“I live with my wife and two children at a relative’s house because my house was destroyed by the military during the shooting in early 2020.” By his last name.

Butt explained that the two rebels who were killed on his property may have entered his home while fleeing security forces.

In October 2021, government forces blew up a building in the Pampur area near Srinagar, killing an insurgent commander.

“We have not yet recovered from the massive network (economic) damage caused by the shooting,” a relative of the owners of the unnamed building told Efe.

Sheikh, another resident of the southern district of Shopian, told EFE that security forces choose to demolish or burn down houses when they seek other methods.

“Government forces can use tear gas against rooted insurgents, but instead they use direct fire and ammunition,” Sheikh said, asking that he be identified by his last name and that he lost his three-story house in 2019 during a conflict.

There is no official data on private property damaged in conflicts, but sometimes the consequences are beyond the destruction of homes.

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Some residents face imprisonment after firing on their homes.

An unnamed police official said the arrests came as security forces confirmed the alleged civilians were linked to the rebels.

Controversial area

Situated in the foothills of the Himalayas, Kashmir is one of the few Muslim-majority parts of India, and India and Pakistan have demanded full sovereignty since independence from the British Empire in 1947 after the partition of the subcontinent.

These tensions escalated when New Delhi revoked the semi-autonomous status of Indian Kashmir in August 2019, dividing the state into two areas directly controlled by the central government and imposing unprecedented restrictions for several months.

In the first three months of 2022, 42 insurgents were killed in the valley, and Indian officials say the violence has since subsided, according to police. EFE

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