With the economy in a near mess, Modi chooses ‘Kashmir’ for his poll bugle
"We had promised that we will make new efforts to curb the problems in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. Today I can say with satisfaction that the country has started walking towards fulfilling those dreams," PM Modi said.
With nothing substantial to boast of as their government’s performance, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the centre has chosen to project the Kashmir Article 370 abrogation feat as its primary poll campaign agenda for the upcoming assembly elections. The BJP is the ruling party in the three states of Jharkhand, Maharashtra, and Haryana, which are going to the polls next month.
Kicking off the party’s poll campaign today, PM Modi claimed that the move to end the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and its bifurcation into two union territories was one of the key successful measures taken in the first 100 days of his second term.
"We had promised that we will make new efforts to curb the problems in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. Today I can say with satisfaction that the country has started walking towards fulfilling those dreams," PM Modi said, addressing a mammoth rally attended by the Chief Minister of Maharashtra and his cabinet colleagues in Nashik on Thursday.
The implementation of the Constitution in Jammu and Kashmir wasn't just the decision of the government but was done keeping the sentiments of 130 crore Indians in mind. This decision was taken to liberate the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh from violence, terrorism, separatism, and corruption, PM Modi said.
Forty-five days after gag orders were issued in Kashmir on the eve of the abrogation of Article 370 on August 5, Prime Minister Narendra Modi promised a ‘new Kashmir’ which he said will be a ‘new paradise.’ The Modi government had envisaged a ‘new India’ by 2022 as a major campaign during its first regime.
While partial gag orders are still in play in the Kashmir region, curfew has been relaxed in order to allow people to buy essential commodities. PM Modi called for “hugging each Kashmiri and creating a new paradise in the valley.”
Prime Minister Modi blamed the Congress for the plight of Kashmiris for decades. The Prime Minister’s mention of Kashmir as part of the poll campaign comes at a time when India had to assure the UN Human Rights Council that the Indian government is ensuring basic services, essential supplies, normal functioning of institutions, mobility, and nearly full connectivity in Kashmir amid “challenging circumstances”.
"Democratic processes have been initiated. Restrictions are being eased continuously," India said in its reply to the UNHRC. Mohammad Yusuf Tarigami, a former MLA and a prominent Left party leader who was kept under house arrest in Srinagar and was brought to Delhi for medical treatment under the orders of the Supreme Court, had said that the central government’s security measures were slowly "suffocating" the people of Kashmir.
The government claims that everything is normal in the valley and that no one has died. But people are slowly dying as they feel suffocated, Tarigami told Asiaville in an interview.
The BJP’s strategy to go ahead with Kashmir as their poll masthead comes at a time when the opposition Congress party has been targeting Prime Minister Modi on the state of the economy.
"Howdy Economy Doin', Mr Modi?" Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi today attacked the Prime Minister with a dig at PM Modi’s upcoming mass rally in the US with Indian diaspora. The government is struggling to minimise the budget goal gap in a continued state of lower revenue prospects with GDP at its lowest rate since 2013. Automobile sales have hit rock bottom in recent decades and the government’s own data claims that the unemployment rate is at a 45-year-high.