India imposes governor’s rule in Jammu and Kashmir

Governor’s rule brushes aside elected executives, brings state under direct rule of India’s central government
SRINAGAR, Jammu and Kashmir: Indian government on Wednesday imposed the governor’s rule in Jammu and Kashmir.
On Tuesday, the state government in the only Muslim-majority state fell after the withdrawal of Hindu nationalist Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) from the ruling coalition.
The imposition of the governor’s rule was formally approved by the Indian President Ram Nath Kovind on Wednesday morning.
This is the third time when Jammu and Kashmir was brought under governor’s rule since January 2015 — first time when the elections threw up a hung verdict and second when the sitting chief minister Mufti Sayeed died.
NN Vohra, 82, who has been the governor of Jammu and Kashmir since 2008, will be heading the state again.
The governor’s rule brushes aside the elected executives and instead brings the state under the direct rule of India’s central government.
While announcing the fall of the elected government, the BJP vowed to give a free hand to the country’s armed forces to crush the armed movement for independence in the region.
The governor’s rule came immediately after the suspension of the Ramadan ceasefire.
“We have given a free hand to security forces to conduct operations against terrorists,” Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh told the media.
Kashmir, a Muslim-majority Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in full. A small sliver of Kashmir is also held by China.
Since they were partitioned in 1947, the two countries have fought three wars — in 1948, 1965 and 1971 — two of them over Kashmir.
Also, in Siachen glacier in northern Kashmir, Indian and Pakistani troops have fought intermittently since 1984. A cease-fire came into effect in 2003.
Some Kashmiri groups in Jammu and Kashmir have been fighting against Indian rule for independence, or for unification with neighboring Pakistan.
According to several human rights organizations, thousands of people have reportedly been killed in the conflict in the region since 1989.–AA

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