JK News Today

Srinagar, November 6

Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has put the  police  as face of the state  whereas it should have been the human  and political face of the government to  reach out to the  people . The police is  meant for  policing and the traditions that have been inherited since pre-independence era cannot be changed over night.

The state government should understand that  with an open mind.  But she  has a point , which cannot be overlooked. Here, it’s why.

While Mehbooba Mufti has a point that the ten- 12 year old stone throwers   or protestors first come face to face with the  police in  law and order situation . It here that the police’s face can change the dynamics of the whole  situation . The use of pellet guns and  tear gas shells   and the resultant losses  put the men in uniform in the frame of adversary . And what has happened in  Kashmir  in the past four months is  horrifying .  The loss of ninety lives, blinding of the youth and injury to thousands of others  amounts to losses  equivalent to some kind of war.

Secondly,  when the policemen make arrests during raids or chase , their  attitude  is what makes the victims make an opinion about them.  The police, during such raids,  usually acts as  a revenge force . The distinction between  the  men in uniform bound by certain rules and allowed to work within parameters of the  rule  of law is lost. That results in the loss of faith in the rule of law  among the people. Not only those arrested but also this approach disgusts their friends, relatives and onlookers.

Thirdly, the police station is the first place of interaction rather interrogation  for those arrested during  the protests . There, the parents are seen beseeching for the release of their “ innocent” children  or seeking forgiveness even if they had “ committed some minor crime.”  Such scenes germinate anger and frustration among the victims . That can turn  them into a major  trouble makers with stones or guns in future. Keeping them in  jails limits their world view and harden their  ways of life.

Mehbooba Mufti who has  been a witness to  this kind of the “ mental torture” of the youth  is aware that that the typical police approach  would only complicate problem  and dead end would approach sooner than later, leaving little or no room for reversing the things.

But more important than that is that there should be  clarity in the political approach, no administrative or police  reach out can substitute the  political reach out.