As the curfew in The Kashmir Valley following the encounter of self-styled Hizbul Mujahiden commander Burhan Muzaffar Wani entered the 43rd day there was a surprising development. The Oil Tankers Association of Jammu & Kashmir on Saturday i.e. 20th August 2016 announced that they would be going on an indefinite strike due to security issues.
The announcement of the strike led people flocking the pumping stations in large numbers to fill up on their supply of fuel causing long queues and unrest in front of filling stations. In some cases even the police had to be called to manage the situation .
The truck owners alleged that their drivers & cleaners were targeted by stone flinging mobs causing damage to the vehicles as well as injuring the occupants. Till date the association claims that 14 trucks have been damaged and a number of drivers and cleaners injured. The strike was called off on Monday after the truckers representative being assured by the Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti that adequate protection would be provided.
Till the time the strike wasn’t announced a very select few knew of these occurrences and apparently none of our secular media houses bothered to report these incidents. Who cares about the life and property of a few truckers? This kind of news wouldn’t catch national headlines and neither boost the TRP’s of the channel. One might even attribute this violence to a mob frenzy ,in the heat of the moment they might have attacked the tankers, but, is that really so? 14 tankers being a victim to stone pelters isn’t a random event but rather goes to show that they were systematically targeted and had other motives.
It is well understood as a result of truckers strike, the food and fuel supply to the defense establishments in the state would also suffer.
For a lot of forward posts in the state, food and fuel supplied by these trucks is the life line. The supplies are ferried to these forward posts via porters and helicopters from designated base camps which are fed by these trucks. In the inhospitable environment of the upper reaches of the Himalayas, these supplies can mean a difference between life and death along with continued operational effectiveness of our forces manning these sensitive areas. Kerosene is needed by our “jawaans” to fuel their stoves. Diesel is required to keep the generators running and aviation fuel/jet fuel is required to for continuous flying of the helicopter.
It is a very common strategy in war to target the supply lines of the enemy .It’s easier to attack a weakened enemy than one that is well supplied. Once more this goes to prove that the so called “extra state actors” are at play here.
Let’s not forget our forces are not only braving the hardships up there ,but also have been extending their helping hands to the” Awaam” by not only providing them with medical and other facilities, but also maintaining their connectivity with the rest of the world.
Now the question is “Why is this a worrying development”?
Would the “awaam” of Jammu & Kashmir make their life more miserable for themselves than it already is, by indulging in such activities?
What are they going to gain from it ? A few raised eye-brows and some verbal sympathy, may be a few empty promises by their so called well-wisher. Then again forgotten and left to suffer in their own created hell. The struggles of “Awaam” for day to day survival in the present battered situation is already bordering dire straight.
This goes to show that the attacks were well thought of and planned to target our defense establishment rather than random acts of violence. Not to forget that, most forms of communication in Jammu & Kashmir became suspended with the onset violence. Keeping a track of the movements of these tankers and then organizing the mobs to pelt stone at them requires a certain level of planning. One can gauge the sick mentality of the perpetrators of these attacks. No cost is too small for them, the charity and well-being of their fellow “oppressed people” is of no concern whatsoever. To forward their nefarious intentions they rather have the valley burn and its “awaam” suffer than allow the valley to resume normalcy.
As someone has said
“ताउम्र जन्नत में रह कर, उसे उजाड़ने में गुज़ार दी,
और जिहाद बस इस बात की थी, की मरने के बाद जन्नत मिले…”