A few days back, GOI has appointed Dineshwar Sharma who is a 1979 – batch (retired) IPS officer of Kerala cadre as an interlocutor to start a sustained dialogue on Jammu & Kashmir. His appointment as a special representative is mission based rather than tenure based. He is dealing with Kashmir since 1992, the nascent time of insurgency in the valley. Let’s have a look at why Mr. Sharma is considered as a good choice as an interlocutor on Kashmir.
1. First of all his appointment is Apolitical. It means that he does not belong to any political party and does not represent any political party.
2.He has been dealing with Kashmir since 1992, the nascent time of insurgency in Kashmir so he is considered as a man who knows in and out of the insurgency.
3.Being an IB officer, he will have more contacts than any political person and he is also familiar with ISI’s tactics to spread instability in the valley.
4.His appointment is mission based and not tenure based. It means we do not expect statements, we need actions.
5.As an interlocutor(or a special representative), he can talk with all stakeholders like Think Tanks, Political parties, Prominent Public People, Hurriyat Leaders, Local Groups and Local NGOs of Kashmir. He has full freedom in carrying out the discussion in public, private and seminars etc. This freedom will provide him the best choice to speak, to understand, and to talk to the people.
In 2001, during the tenure of Ata Bihari Vajpayee, K.C Pant was appointed as a special envoy on J&k. In 2003, N.N. Vohra, the present Governor of J&K was interlocutor of GOI. But their appointment was tenure based and time deadlines lead to shortcuts which ultimately failed because a conducive environment was not there due to repeated intervention of ISI and arousal of people by Pakistan in the valley.
But at present, we have successfully carried out Operation All Out with the help of state police and other central forces which helped to create a conducive environment for sustained dialogue. Right now, Pakistan is in a corner and cannot do much due to its deeds. The Recent opinion of USA and China on terrorism during BRICS summit brought Pakistan, a safe haven for terrorists, in a bad light. We are doing well in the international community and media’s discussion and opinions are also in favor of India, so by keeping all these points in minds, we can say that it is a good time to initiate discussion on Kashmir by the government.
People of Kashmir have gone through Trauma of militancy for a long time. By and large i.e, 90% people of Kashmir want peace. They are seeking right people, right direction and a right time for talks. In this scenario, the appointment of Mr. Sharma as the interlocutor is considered as a good choice and it is hoped that it will bring fruitful results.
Although it is considered that appointment of Mr. Sharma is Apolitical, but it is not wrong to say that his appointment is done by keeping election of Gujarat in mind.