Challenges in Reducing Tensions in the J&K Region

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Source: The post challenges in reducing tensions in the J&K region has been created, based on the article “J&K terror attack: Dealing with Pakistan without playing tit-for-tat” published in “Indian express” and “A new trend: India needs more than troops to combat militants in Jammu” published in “The Hindu” on 10th July 2024

UPSC Syllabus Topic: GS Paper3-security

Context: The articles discuss recent terrorist attacks in Jammu and Kashmir, attributing them to Pakistan-sponsored groups. They mention India’s security challenges and diplomatic efforts to address this ongoing conflict, amidst changing regional dynamics and internal pressures within Pakistan.

For detailed information on The Challenge of Cross-border Terrorism in India read this article here

How Severe Is the Terrorism Threat in the J&K Region?

  1. Recent Attacks: In the last two days, seven security personnel were killed, following four attacks in June. These include an ambush in Badnota village, killing five army personnel.
  2. Continued Sponsorship: Despite international scrutiny, Pakistan continues to support terrorist groups operating in Jammu and Kashmir.
  3. Evolving Threats: New terror groups and strategies, such as targeting the Rajouri-Poonch area, show an adaptation in terrorist operations, increasing the complexity of the threat.

How Has the Situation Affected Perceptions?

  1. Shattered Complacency: Recent terror attacks have disrupted the previous perception of Pakistan’s restraint, particularly among India’s strategic community. This reflects a shift in the perceived effectiveness of past peace initiatives and muscular policies.
  2. Misjudged Stability: The belief that revoking J&K’s special status had largely contained the Pakistan problem is challenged by continued attacks. This indicates that major policy moves have not resolved the underlying issues.

What Are the Challenges in Reducing Tensions in J&K Region?

  1. Persistent Terrorism: Despite international scrutiny and India’s strong security measures, Pakistan-sponsored terrorism continues unabated, as evidenced by recent fatal attacks on security forces.
  2. Diplomatic Limitations: The slogan “terror and talks cannot go together” has become a public and political mantra in India, reducing the government’s flexibility in pursuing diplomatic talks with Pakistan.
  3. Pakistan’s Internal Politics: Political turmoil and military dominance in Pakistan complicate any potential diplomatic engagement. The stand taken by former Prime Minister Imran Khan against trading with India adds to the challenges.
  4. Reduced Local Intelligence: The redeployment of troops to the Eastern Ladakh border following the 2020 standoff with China has led to a significant gap in local intelligence in Jammu and Kashmir, affecting the effectiveness of security operations and increasing vulnerability to terrorist tactics.

What Are the Implications for Security?

  1. Increased Security Risks: Recent terror attacks, including the ambush in Badnota village that killed five army personnel, highlight increased security risks for forces operating in Jammu and Kashmir.
  2. Strained Resources: The redeployment of a large number of troops to the Eastern Ladakh border has created a vacuum in local security, reducing the effectiveness of intelligence and response capabilities in Jammu and Kashmir.
  3. Adaptive Terror Tactics: Terrorists are utilizing modern technology and shifting focus to less guarded regions like Rajouri-Poonch, complicating security operations.

What Should India Do Next?

  1. Enhance Security Protocols: India should tighten security measures, especially in vulnerable areas like Rajouri-Poonch, where recent shifts in terrorist activities have been noted.
  2. Diplomatic Engagement: Despite the challenges, India should seek diplomatic avenues to reduce tensions, possibly resuming quiet talks that have sporadically occurred.
  3. Counter-Terrorism Strategies: Strengthen counter-terrorism tactics, including the use of advanced technology to bridge the intelligence gaps caused by troop redeployments to other regions.
  4. International Pressure: Continue efforts to isolate Pakistan internationally, focusing on its role in sponsoring terrorism, while addressing anti-India rhetoric effectively at global forums.

Question for practice:

Discuss the implications of recent terrorist attacks in Jammu and Kashmir on India’s security measures and diplomatic efforts.

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