Former Indian PM Manmohan Singh accuses Modi of mismanaging Kashmir issue 'like never before'

India must recognise problems in contested valley and sort them out, ex-premier tells audience at Congress plenary


News Desk March 18, 2018
Former Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. PHOTO COURTESY: NDTV

Former Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday accused the Narendra Modi government of 'mismanaging' the situation in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) 'like never before', NDTV reported.

"The situation in the Kashmir valley is worsening by the day," said Singh at the Congress party's 84th Plenary session that is being held in New Delhi.

He added that India must recognise the "problems in Kashmir" and ensure that these problems are "tackled and sorted".

Indicating the tensions inherent in the partnership of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and allies, parties with a huge ideological gap, Singh remarked: "they have installed a government where the two wings of the administration are working against each other".

The government alliance - made necessary by the fractured mandate in the state following the 2015 assembly elections -- has been under strain over various issues on which the two parties have widely divergent views.

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The rift had been visible over a political party's promises of talks with separatists, the proposal to remove the AFSPA (the Armed Forces' Special Powers Act under which grants special powers to the army in insurgency-hit areas), the implementation of the Common Minimum Programme and even the roll-out of the government's flagship Goods and Services Tax.

Last week, concerns were raised about the future of the alliance after the sacking of senior minister Haseeb Drabu - the BJP's main conduit Mehbooba Mufti's party since the death of her father Mufti Mohammad Sayeed.

The top BJP leadership summoned the state leaders to discuss possible repercussions on the alliance and mediate on ways to resolve the situation.

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Over the last two years, Indian Occupied Kashmir has witnessed a spike in violence by occupying forces - villagers have protested every time so-called 'operations' are on and refused to cooperate with security forces.

Law and order has also taken a beating following the six-month-long stone-throwing protests following the killing of Burhan Wani.

India must recognise the "problems in Kashmir" and ensure that these problems are "tackled and sorted", Singh is reported to have said.

This article originally appeared on NDTV

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