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Impunity to Military Personal in Kashmir Valley, a Heart Touching Debate Since 1989

Author Affiliations

  • 1 Department of Educational Studies Central University of Jammu

Int. Res. J. Social Sci., Volume 4, Issue (7), Pages 54-58, July,14 (2015)


By conservative estimates, the two and a half decades conflict in Jammu and Kashmir has seen more than 70,000 dead and more than 8,000 disappearances. The spectacle of death, destruction, gender violence and disappearances witnessed over and over again in Kashmir is the result of culture of impunity that has flourished in the aftermath of year’s conflict and militarisation. In the face of these human violations, failure in justice system in the state judiciary and military tribunal further add to this culture of impunity. The reign of impunity constitutes a form of violence and a “structural element of everyday reality”. Impunity accorded to the armed forces has been a norm in Kashmir valley rather than an exception. Impunity represents a challenge in Kashmir valley not only in cases of recent violations of the right to life, but also of those committed in the past in respect of which effective investigations and prosecutions still have not been conducted. Complaints were widely raised that the wheels of justice, when they turn, do so too slowly. Legal proceedings drift for years, while alleged perpetrators remain large in the community, often on bail. The fight against impunity in Kashmir valley is faced with lot of challenges at various stages of accountability process. During the stage of reporting a crime, it is often heard that local police authority refuses to register a first information report (FIR) against the military personal, including those related to rapes or searching for captive persons, and those persons who are attempting to register a case are often subjected to threatening treatment or to the fact that their complaints are not given serious consideration. The existence of judiciary holds the promise of accountability and justice, but facade of redress, pattern of cover-up and denials are pervasive and common throughout the legal system at both state and central levels. Indian occupied Kashmir is one of the most highly militarized areas in the world since the last two and a half decade. The history of armed violence, disappearances, murders, illegal killings, rapes and human sufferings has touched every nook and cranny of the Kashmir valley. The absolute number of people killed, maimed and tortured will probably never be known till now and no one has been held accountable for these crimes. National security laws like the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), is in operation in Kashmir valley since 1989, assures impunity or free reign to defence personal accused of those violations. The present paper highlighted the violations and abuses which the Indian military has committed and have been found accountable and the free reign provided to them in the valley by the central Government.


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