Daily Special Current Affairs Material for IAS (Pre) 2013 National Issues - Topic: "Kashmir: Why AFSPA Must Go"

Daily Special Current Affairs Material for IAS (Pre) 2013

Chapter: National Issues

Topic: Kashmir: Why AFSPA Must Go

Q. What arguments are given to justify AFSPA in J&K?

Three spurious arguments are being used to justify the status quo of AFSPA.

  • First, the Army contends that the situation across the Line of Control needs a robust military presence. But Mr. Abdullah isn’t proposing removing a single soldier. His proposals would only lift AFSPA from two areas where the Army in any case has no security responsibilities. If things went well, troops would be freed up for deployment along the LoC, leaving the State and central police forces to deal with the degraded insurgency.

  • Secondly, it is claimed that without AFSPA, the Army will not be able to stage counter-terrorism operations in an emergency. Proponents of this argument forget that AFSPA did not have to be imposed to allow the Army to assist in the defence of Parliament House when it came under terrorist attack in 2001 — and that the Army staged many successful counter-terrorism operations in Jammu province before AFSPA was imposed there in 2001.

  • Finally, some argue that the AFSPA-free enclaves will be magnets for terrorists. This, too, makes little sense, since the Army is not present in the enclaves anyway — and it is improbable that terrorists have not established themselves there for fear of a mere law.

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