Centre suggests fresh amnesty measures for Kashmiri youth
Srinagar, Jan 24: In a major development, the Ministry of Home Affairs, on Wednesday, suggested a slew of measures for withdrawing cases against youth and giving militants a chance to “rehabilitate” and live a normal life. The MHA took the decisions after Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh discussed the same with J&K Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, said an official of the MHA statement. As per the official, the MHA has given its nod to review the remaining cases of stone pelting against the youth of Kashmir, a step, it claimed, was taken to give such people a “chance to pursue their career without any psychological pressure”. “MHA has now further advised the state government of Jammu and Kashmir to constitute a high-level committee headed by an officer of the rank of DG/ADG to review the remaining cases of stone pelting against students/youth,” the MHA official said. Sources also added that the Ministry was of the opinion that stone pelting cases of non-grievous nature against the students/youth “should be closed/withdrawn so that they get a chance to focus on their study and pursue their career without any psychological pressure.” Referring to amnesty offered by the state government in compliance with the MHA in November to the youth involved in stone pelting cases, the MHA said that under the scheme “nearly 3685 students/youth have got relief so far”. “More than 9000 students/youth are likely to be covered (under it),” he added the humanitarian step was aimed at giving such youth a chance or rebuilding their careers without being “labelled as criminals for the rest of their lives”. For those involved in militancy, the MHA has advised the state government to formulate a new surrender and rehabilitation policy. This policy, the MHA sources say will provide an opportunity for “alternative path of peace and prosperity to the Kashmiri youth who have joined militancy”.