The Editor, Apropos the article entitled 'Kashmir - an exposure of the real face of Indian democracy’, I am writing to express my thanks to the CGPI for its bold and categorical stand on the matter. Written in the wake of the 'all-party’ delegation’s visit to Srinagar to supposedly appraise itself of the situation, the article captured in no uncertain terms that the mask of Indian democracy has been torn apart by the thousands of brave men, women and children who have come out into the streets to express their anger against continuous and increased repression under the hands of the state.
Hairs are split over whether the protests are against local police, or against the army or this or that para-military security apparatus. The main issue is that of the total bankruptcy of the state, which has been highlighted by the article. In particular, in Kashmir and in the North-East there has been a continuous struggle against the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, which is known world wide as one of the most draconian of all laws. The army repeatedly states that it cannot deal with the situation unless it has protection under this law, the failure of the Indian state exposing itself in fact that it is unable to deal with the problems in Kashmir and elsewhere without this law. The Government and opposition forces keeping repeating the line of `defence of unity and integrity of India’, `rule of law’, `constitutional machinery’ and the like which finds support among parties such as the CPI and CPM. In this regard, the CGPI has boldly stated in the article that the real fault lines in India are between the state and the ruling circles and all those at the other pole whose rights are denied. It has also stated unequivocally that the use of armed force to crush the voice of dissent must be rejected. I am writing to express my support for the call.