‘Op Sadbhavna’ ending Army’s fear among terrorists in Kashmir: Maj Arya

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 16 Dec 2018 10:03:50


Staff Reporter,

Madarsas are becoming radicalisation centres
in Kashmir, says Arya

Anti-India elements using Internet as tool to spread radicalisation, observes former Army officer

Indian Army’s plan of providing healing touch to win the hearts and minds of Kashmiris through ‘Operation Sadbhavna’ has turned the situation grimmer. It has ended the Army’s fear among the civilians. Such operations should be carried out by Government agencies and not by the Army, opined Major Gaurav Arya on Saturday. He was delivering a lecture on ‘Radicalisation in Kashmir Valley’ at Chitnavis Centre here, organised jointly by Bhonsala Military School and Chitnavis Centre.

“Civilians in Kashmir valley were closing doors due to fear when a platoon of CRPF was carrying out patrolling in the village. Such was the situation in the year 1989 when militancy exploded in the valley,” said Major Arya. “That time, the Army was manning Line of  Control (LoC),” he said and added, “Jab Army aati thi to aisa lagata tha ki Tsunami aa gayi (When Army was coming, it was like Tsunami had come).”

The goodwill operations like ‘Operation Sadbhavna’ have gradually decreased fear of the Army among the civilians, he felt. Now, he said, “They dare to pelt stones at Army personnel and even manhandle men of the Armed Forces. The situation has turned into a turmoil in the valley. After the Army, there would be no option left with the Government.”

Major Arya further stated that the Kashmir issue had assumed the dimension of terrorism. Earlier, it was problem of rebels and militants only, he said.  “Using radicalisation, Pakistan is destabilising the situation in Kashmir valley, which is just approximately 145 km long and 45 km wide,” he said. Exploring radicalisation in Kashmir, Major Arya claimed that Madarsas were becoming the centers of radicalisation in last 15 years after Bihari preachers replaced local ones. “These preachers have fanned Wahabi and Salafi cultures and finished Sufi culture in the valley,” he observed.

The radical elements are using Internet as tool to spread radicalisation and unleash misinformation in the valley. But, the Government agencies are countering this propaganda by using techniques of the year 1970, he alleged.
Major Arya discussed three incidences in which morphed pictures and videos had gone viral on social media and sparked  massive protest in the valley. However, the three social media posts turned out to be utter lies and rumours spread by radical elements, he added.

According to Major Arya, the complex problem of Kashmir can be solved by the simple measures that include thrust on  de-radicalisation, understanding and solving problems of common Kashmiris, not carrying out ‘Operation Sadbhavna’ through the Indian Army, starting cinema halls in the valley, and starting a large number of de-addiction centres in the valley.

Suryaratan Daga, Chairman, Central Hindu Military Education Society (CHMES) and Kumar Kale, Secretary, CHMES, welcomed Major Arya at the outset. Tarun Patel, Vice-Chairman, CHMES; Mohan Sarwate, Director, Chitnavis Centre and a large number of Nagpurians attended the programme.