MUMBAI: Despite recent bloodshed during the Indian by-polls in occupied-Kashmir that killed at least 12 Kashmiris, India’s Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has claimed on Tuesday that there will be a “transformed” Kashmir in a year, The India Express reported.
“You will see a transformed Kashmir in a year. No matter how the change occurs, one thing is certain, that there will be a change in Kashmir in a year’s time,” he asserted during an event in Mumbai.
Indian forces on Monday killed at least four Kashmiri youth during a military operation in the Keran area of Kupwara district, reported Radio Pakistan.
Curfew-like curbs were also imposed on the movement of people across several parts of the Himalayan region to ensure the Indian by-polls were conducted successfully.
Singh also slammed the former chief minister of the disputed valley Farooq Abdullah for supporting the stone-pelting Kashmiri protesters.
He had warned India that it was “losing Kashmir” and had said the Kashmiris were fighting for the resolution of the issue as per the wishes of its people.
Abdullah also criticised the Indian government for its failure to maintain law and order. The National Conference (NC) President is also contesting the Srinagar seat.
Kashmir has been a disputed region between Pakistan and India since independence from Britain in 1947. Two of three wars have been fought over the valley.
Indian-held Kashmir witnessed deadly protests in 2016, after a popular separatist leader, Burhan Wani, was killed by Indian forces. Last September, tension escalated when at least 19 Indian soldiers were killed in an assault on an army camp in Kashmir, an attack India blamed on Pakistan-based militants.