Is India taking steps towards authoritarianism? Is this the new normal in fighting terror and radical Islam?
India has taken an authoritarian approach to fighting terror. The latest defensive from the Indian governments in Jammu and Kashmir seem to be a play right out of a North Korean play book. Student protests erupted in the Sri Pratap Higher Secondary School and College in Kashmir. In the eruption, students threw rocks and pro Islamic slogans were screamed.
The mob which started with school girls pelting stones evolved in to a multi gender collective rampage that injured police. At the end, tear gas, water cannons, and knight stick led concussions cooled off the situation.
Now, the Indian governments in the states of Jammu and Kashmir have banned twenty two different websites that are popular in India. This ban was immediately implemented on April 17, 2017 following that overwhelming student protest. The sites included in the ban are whatsapp, Face book and Twitter. As a further precaution, India has also banned internet data being streamed on 3g and 4g mobile phones.
What was the reason for the internet ban in the Indian States of Jammu and Kashmir?
It has not been in the news lately but there is a blazing inferno in India called the Hindu Muslim conflicts which are on the verge of being a war. When you consider the geography and demographics of the states of Jammu and Kashmir in India it starts to paint a more abstract and deep picture of something fragile and explosive. These Indian states border China and Pakistan. The religious demographic is overwhelmingly in the favor of Muslims in a country run by Hindus. This region has a history of war, riots and transitions of power. Basically what happen in April 2017 in the states of Jammu and Kashmir of India was nothing less than an Arab spring. However, what is springing is Islamic fundamentalism, a concept that is even detrimental to their own fellow Muslims. With unrest in border states a lot of undesirable consequences can occur such as a war that spills over, or a state that is against its nation in favor of a bordering nation.
So, as a counter to stop the unrest, India blocked all communication as mentioned above.
When you think about, it is directly from the play books of Russia, Cuba and North Korea, where citizens of authoritarian regimes are deprived of communication devices in fear of a revolt. With the mathematics dramatically favoring Muslims over Hindus and other religions the fear is very real.
The United Nations has expressed major concern over this tactic India is using. These tactics as stated by the United Nations are below the standards of human rights. Furthermore, the banning of major social media sites on computers and phones blocks the freedom of expression of its public. The United Nations as well as America strongly endorses the ability and freedom to express one’s self and India’s latest move seems to be the anti-thesis of that endorsement. With this new normal of technological oppression in India, it is possible another larger and destructive protest can happen. It has the possibility of blooming in to a full blown riot and has the potential to be another attempted revolt in these states.
Is this is the new way of fighting terror? Will innocent people and citizens of a state they belong to be egregiously deprived of human rights in the name of fighting terror? The answer is only time will tell but what time is trying to say right now seems to be the eerie uttering syllables of a police state.
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