oppn parties MEPs Visit To Kashmir: Photo Opportunity

News Snippets

  • In reply to a question in Parliament, the government says it is empowered to lawfully intercept, monitor or decrpyt information stored in a computer resource in the interest of sovereignty or integrity of India
  • Police stop a 12-year old girl on her way to the Sabarimala shrine
  • In Karnataka, the JD(S) indicates that it might support the BJP government if it falls short of numbers after the bypolls
  • Congress pips the BJP in local body elections in Rajasthan, winning 961 wards to the BJPs 737
  • After Airtel and Vodafone-Idea, Jio also indicates that tariffs will be raised from December
  • Sources in Shiv Sena say that they might revive the alliance with the BJP if it offers the 50:50 deal
  • A miffed Sanjay Rout of the Shiv Sena says that it will take "100 births" to understand Sharad Pawar
  • Mobile operators Vodafone-Idea and Airtel decide to raise tariffs from next month
  • Sharad Pawar meets Sonia Gandhi and says more time needed for government formation in Maharashtra
  • Justice S A Bobde sworn in as the 47th Chief Justice of India
  • Supreme Court holds hotels liable for theft of vehicle from their parking area if parked by valet, says "owner's risk" clause is not a shield from such liability
  • Finance Minister says she is receiving feedback from many sectors that recovery is happening as there is lower stress
  • Sabarimala temple opens, but police bar the entry of women below 50 years
  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman says Air India and BPCL to be sold off by March
  • Media person Rajat Sharma resigns as DDCA president
Two Muslim litigants in Ayodhya refuse to accept the Supreme Court order, say review petition might be filed
oppn parties
MEPs Visit To Kashmir: Photo Opportunity

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.

Four things stand out in the visit of 20 members of the European Parliament to Jammu and Kashmir. First, they were not invited by the government. Instead, a person who claims to belong to a think tank in Delhi about which few have heard issued invitations on behalf of the PMO. The question is how could such a person gain access to the PMO and why was she allowed to broker such a deal?

Next, how were the MEPs selected? Most of them belong to far-right parties that campaign on anti-immigration planks and follow divisive policies. They definitely do not represent a cross-section of opinion in Europe but rather represent constricted thinking. How could they be expected to analyze the situation in Kashmir fairly?

Further, the orchestrated visit of the MEPs was limited to sight-seeing and photo opportunities. Neither were they allowed to meet locals nor civil society activists, let alone politicians in the state who continue to be incarcerated. What opinion could they form by seeing empty streets and the security forces?

Finally, if the government is ready to allow foreign parliamentarians to the state, it should now think of releasing the political leadership and allowing Opposition leaders too. In fact, one of the MEPs advised the government along this line. For, the perception of local people matters more than that of foreigners. If the state is to return to normalcy, it is necessary that political activity must resume and elections to the state assembly are held after a reasonable time.