JAMMU AND KASHMIR: BJP IN A TIGHT CORNER
News behind the News|NbN 20 January 2020
The government’s policies on Kashmir give the impression that it has bitten off more than it can chew. This is also probably true of the citizenship issue as well, but more of that later.
AMULYA GANGULI

The latest on Kashmir is the decision to send as many as 36 Union ministers to the Union territory to spread awareness about the “positive” impact of the abrogation of Article 370 and the development measures that have been undertaken.

The despatch of so many ministers to a Union territory undoubtedly sets a record which rivals the longest period of the Internet shutdown which Kashmir has witnessed. The objective of the weeklong mission of these high functionaries is also odd, for if the locals have not been able to appreciate the “positive” impact of being denied their earlier special constitutional status even after five months, then the ministers may not find it easy to convince them.

In any event, the very fact that the government is making a special effort to reach out to the Kashmiris in such a big way means that the conditions in the Union territory are far from being normal, as is occasionally claimed by official and political spokespersons.

The ministerial visit will be in the wake of the recent trips to Jammu and Kashmir by two groups of foreigners – the first by members of the European parliament from mainly the East European countries and the second by a more variegated group of Delhi-based diplomats from the US and several European, Asian and African countries.

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