Bengaluru: “We are not able to get in touch with our families and we don't know what is happening there. There is no news coming out from Kashmir because of a complete blackout. For those of us living outside the state, the flash scrapping of Article 370 has created chaos and a fear psychosis," said a student of Kashmiri origin, here on Monday after the central government took the historic decision of abrogating Article 370, which gave special powers to Jammu and Kashmir.
Taking part in a dharna called by various organisations in front of the Town Hall on Monday opposing the government’s decision, the student, who requested anonymity, said, "I am concerned about the way Kashmiris will react to the decision and the safety of the people living in Kashmir. Everybody in Kashmir is going to suffer because of the economic shutdown, in protest against the decision. The primary economic source of the state, tourism, is already suffering because of the government's advisory and today' decision is only going to make it worse. There will be a major economic backlash, loss of life and everyone there is scared. A strong backlash is expected because this is not a small decision that will just pass. That is why the military presence has been beefed up there", he added.
Though he agreed that the state will develop better if it becomes part of the country, he objected to the union government taking away the state’s autonomy without taking the people and local political leaders into confidence. "This is going to do more harm than good. I am not sure of an amicable solution to the issue as enough damage has been done in the past. The only reason why Kashmiris are not able to lead their lives like any other free Indian is because of the military presence and the government-sponsored oppression. Otherwise, our day-to-day life and interactions are as normal as yours", he said.