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Attacks in Kashmir aimed at ‘othering’ majority community: Sajad Lone

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Says govt doesn’t have luxury of resorting to randomized response

Srinagar: Peoples Conference chairman Sajad Gani Lone on Saturday said the spate of attacks in Kashmir was a deliberate attempt of othering the majority community in the union territory and identifying it with the savagery that a lunatic fringe is indulging in.

Lone, who has condemned the attack on minorities, said the Jammu and Kashmir administration does not have the luxury of resorting to a randomised response.

“Attempts are being made to violently target the minority community. There is a deliberate attempt of othering the majority community and identifying it with the savagery that a lunatic fringe is indulging in. It is important to make a distinction between the majority community and the fringiest of the fringe, consisting of a few individuals who are a curse for this land and people inhabiting this land,” Lone said in a statement here, adding that “they have not spared the majority community either and have killed at whim and continue to target all those who are not in conformity with their worldview.”

Emphasising the need to remain steadfast and united in this hour of grief to protect the people, Lone said, “Our collective heritage and our collective histories of our struggles, our travails demand that we understand that this land is ours and that we together don’t allow trespassers and encroachers to scare us away.

“A helpless civilian can do nothing against the diktats of violence and the majority community is as pained and as scared as the minority community. I am under no illusions that the guns targeting the minority community today will target the majority community tomorrow. They have done it in the past for the last three decades, they have done it just a few days back and they will do it again,” he added.

Lone said the madness of perpetrators of violence would not matter if there is a resolve to call a spade a spade.

“I am a Kashmiri Muslim and have lost my dear father to bullets and there are thousands like me. We are all in it together. We are connected through the pain of losing our loved ones to bullets. Those who indulge in terror, those who believe in violence have no religion, no faith and no nationality,” he added.

Lone underscored that while the people of J&K cannot afford to give a scattered, disunited response, it is equally important for the administration to understand that it just does not have the luxury of resorting to a randomised response.

“That would be walking into a trap laid by the killers. What we need is a specific targeting of those involved in acts of terror. Sifting through three-decade records and summoning old OGWs who have reintegrated into the society may do more harm than benefit. Wholesale summoning is as harmful and counter-productive,” he added.

He emphasised that the union territory administration needs to understand that it may have been operating in an environment, which was not as challenging as it is today or might be in the future and they need to gear up to face these challenges.

“Our learning curves are bloodied and have been drawn over the last three decades in the company of a lot of pain and bloodshed. Not referring to these curves will be a waste of that sacrifice.  We will have to refer to these learning curves and I can tell you with authority that our learning curves will never recommend a randomised response,” he said.

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