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Kashmir - Background

Kashmir - Maps

Line of Control


Northern Command


X Corps

India-Pakistan Relations

  • All-Parties Hurriyat Conference
  • All Jammu & Kashmir Muslim Conference (AJKMC)

  • Al-Badr
  • Al-Badr Mujahideen
  • Harakat-ul-Mujahideen
  • Harakat ul-Jihad-I-Islami
  • Hizb-ul-Mujahideen (HUM)
  • Jaish-e-Mohammed (JEM)
  • Lashkar-e-Mohammadi
  • Lashkar-e-Tayyiba/Toiba (LET)
  • Tehrik-e-Jihad (TEJ)

  • Al Barq (ABQ)
  • Al Fateh Force (AFF)
  • Al Jihad Force (AJF)/Al Jihad
  • Al Mujahid Force (AMF)
  • Al Umar Mujahideen (AUM)/Al Umar
  • Awami Action Committee (AAC)
  • Dukhtaran-e-Millat (DEM)
  • Harkat-ul-Ansar (HUA)
  • Ikhwan-ul-Musalmeen (IUM)
  • J & K Democratic Freedom Party (JKDFP)
  • Jammu & Kashmir Islamic Front (JKIF)
  • J & K Jamaat-e-Islami (JKJEI)
  • Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF)
  • J & K People's Conference (JKPC)
  • J & K People's League, Rehmani Faction (JKPL-R)
  • J & K People's Political Front (JKPPF)
  • J & K United People's League (JKUPL)
  • Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen (JUM)
  • Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Almi (JUMA)
  • Kul Jamaat Hurriyat Conference (KJHC)
  • Mahaz-e-Azadi (MEA)
  • Muslim Conference (MC)
  • Muslim Janbaaz Force (MJF)/Janbaaz Force
  • Muslim Mujahideen (MM)
  • Pasban-e-Islam (PEI)/Hizbul Momineen (HMM)
  • Shora-e-Jihad (SEJ)
  • Tehrik-ul-Mujahideen (TUM)
  • An offensive launched in January 2020 by Indian forces in Kashmir had killed at least 116 rebels by June 2020, handing a blow to the armed rebellion that broke out nearly 30 years ago against Indian rule. At least 42 rebels were killed in June alone, according to an official tally. The security forces have pledged to wipe out armed rebellion from the region, but a slow trickle of youth continue to join the rebel ranks. Rebels enjoy popular support and those killed in gun battle are considered martyrs and were accorded mass funerals. But Indian authorities now confiscate bodies of slain rebels and transport them to remote mountainous locations where they are quietly buried.

    By 2020 the current active rebel strength is between 165 and 180 - a considerable drop from the early 1990s when armed fighters ran in thousands. The numbers slowed down drastically in the early 2000s, after which street protests became more commonplace.

    Kashmir's security situation has gradually worsened since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took power in 2014, data show, raising a question mark over his hard-line Kashmiri policy. In August 2019, India revoked a 70-year-old constitutional provision, Article 370, which guaranteed a limited autonomy to the disputed region - home to about 12 million people. India's Hindu nationalist government also rushed thousands of additional troops to the region, which is already believed to host more than half a million Indian forces, making it one of the world's most militarised zones in the world. New Delhi's decision to disband the local legislative body has also alienated sections of politicians who were previously loyal to New Delhi.

    A rights group said 229 people have been killed during military operations in the Indian-administered Kashmir in the first half of 2020. The Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS) said in its biannual report published on 02 July 2020 that the region witnessed “the extrajudicial executions of at least 32 civilians, besides killings of 143 militants and 54 armed forces personnel” from January 1 to June 30, 2020. “At least 57 gunfights took place between government forces and the militants following… search operations,” the report added.

    The Kashmir conflict dates back to 1947 when India and Pakistan gained independence from British colonial rule. Both countries claim the Himalayan region in its entirety. The dispute is blamed for causing two of their three wars and in 1999 again brought the nuclear-armed rivals to the brink of war. Since the late 1980s, a widespread armed insurgency against the Indian army had been underway in India-administered Kashmir. Today, at least 250,000 Indian and over 100,000 Pakistani soldiers are stationed along the 1,000 kilometer Line of Control which divides Kashmir into Indian and Pakistani controlled parts.

    Over the decades, Pakistan's civlian leaders have sought a political resolution of the Kashmir problem, while Pakistan's military leaders have sought to resolve matters by the force of arms. By 2016 Pakistan's sivlian government had lost control of security policy, whch was firmly in the hands of the military. The militant uprising and subsequent Indian military crackdown since 1989 killed nearly 70,000 people. Many Kashmiri favor independence from both India and Pakistan.

    The Coalition of Civil Society, a local human rights group, reported and drew attention to thousands of mass graves in remote parts of Kashmir and demanded that the government investigate them to make clear who the dead were and how they were killed. The organization also wrote scathing reports on cases of brutality involving some of the hundreds of thousands of Indian troops in the region and highlighted the widespread powers granted to troops posted in the area, which led to a culture of impunity and widespread rights abuses. The Public Safety Act, which applies only in Jammu and Kashmir, permits state authorities to detain persons without charge or judicial review for up to two years without visitation from family members. Police in Jammu and Kashmir allegedly routinely employed arbitrary detention and denied detainees access to lawyers and medical attention.

    Pakistan’s powerful military does not want war with India, but it surely is not interested in better relations with India. Real peace would mean an end to the army’s elite status as saviors of the country and possible reductions in its substantial economic power. In twenty years of fighting, Kashmir lost seventy to eighty thousand people, and politically achieved nothing.

    In 2019, neither India nor Pakistan wanted a large war. Both understand that the other's nuclear stockpile is sufficient to reduce their country to a "smoking radiating ruin". A small war is another matter. Pakistan's military is always vigilant against the danger that peace might break out, that the mad momentum of negotiations might reduce the intensity of conflict, and hence the political influence of the military. A new Pakistani Prime Minister, a political outsider elected with the support of the military, must be brought to heal lest he get too big for his britches. India's Naredra Modi faced general elections on 01 April 2019, and a splendid little war with Pakistan would mobilize his base and cause the country to rally around the flag.

    By April 2020 Indian and Pakistani troops in disputed Kashmir were engaged in their most frequent cross-border fighting for at least two years, official data shows, even as the nuclear-armed rivals battle surging coronavirus outbreaks. Indian Army data showed 411 ceasefire violations by Pakistan's military in March, the highest number in a single month since at least 2018. That compares with 267 violations in March last year recorded by the Indian Army. Pakistan's military had recorded 705 ceasefire violations by the Indian Army since the beginning of the year. The Indian Army data showed 1,197 Pakistani violations during the same period. As summer approaches, infiltration into Kashmir typically picks up. An Indian security official said between 250 and 300 fighters were estimated to be ready to cross over from Pakistan, citing intelligence reports.

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    Page last modified: 30-06-2021 11:38:59 ZULU