Multi-talented Indian army on mission to empower Kashmiri youth

Multi-talented Indian army on mission to empower Kashmiri youth

India’s army has received accolades not just from the Western world but the country’s arch-enemy Pakistan. The grand-old army could reach this stage thanks to its integrity, professional commitment, and more importantly, sacrifice and ethical conduct. Besides the efficient combat activities, its personnel can be seen at the front whenever any humanitarian crisis occurs. And now it has involved itself in the empowerment of the downtrodden youth in the Kashmir region, who suffered for decades due to Pakistan-sponsored terrorism.  

The government of India completed the full unification of the state of Jammu and Kashmir with the country through the termination of a provisional constitutional article. The Kashmir valley witnessed an atmosphere of peace after a long period of bloodshed that allegedly resulted from Pakistan-led militancy. Now, the Kashmiri youth are looking forward to a safe, peaceful, and prosperous future thanks to various government schemes.

Indian army did not remain behind. It bolstered its efforts to empower the Kashmiri youth through skill-honing, empowerment programmes and scholarships.[1][2] Women in remote areas are taking lessons in computer knowledge to weaving handlooms, sewing, and stitching, designing, cutting, tailoring at the army-run workshops.[3] Moreover, the army regularly organises medical camps, film festivals, trekking expeditions, and field tours, and provides advanced education and sports facilities.[4][5]  In order to help Kashmiri women communicate with the armed forces personnel, the Indian army deployed women soldiers in the region.[6]

In what can be called a piece of efficient engineering, the Indian army built the world’s highest railway bridge, 359 metres above the Chenab River, which boosted trade and tourism in Kashmir.[7] It also has built tunnels and roads in difficult terrain. A local resident Riyaz Ahmad Bhat said things began improving due to the transport infrastructure. “Two decades ago it was a difficult journey from one village to another,” he said.  “A high-class road, a railway bridge, and jobs for the locals. Sometimes I wonder how it all happened so quickly,” he says, surprised by the change.”[8]

Indian army reached out to people through a display of respect for local religion and culture and public welfare initiatives, said Kashmir-based political analyst Farooq Wani. “The army has undertaken several programmes in areas of skill development, sports, education, health and culture which have helped thousands and contributed to a quantum improvement in the quality of lives of the locals,” he said.[9] “Today, countless youngsters from the Valley are eminent jurists, engineers, doctors, and civil servants in part due to the educational and skill development programs organised by the army.”        

Indian army has been instrumental in humanitarian aid whenever any natural calamity or disaster hits the difficult, mountainous, unreachable areas in Kashmir.[10] Local organisation Panun Kashmir has praised the Indian Army for its “prompt and sensitive” response when floods created havoc in Jammu and Kashmir. “We appreciate the prompt and sensitive response of the Government of India to the unprecedented and catastrophic flood situation in Jammu and Kashmir,” the organisation said.

Besides the professional services, the Indian Army is known for its integrity and ethical conduct, which brought it a number of accolades, even from the nemesis country. In March 2022, former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan compared the armies of the two neighbouring countries and said the “Indian army is not corrupt and they never interfere in civilian government.”[11][12] A Pakistani legislator Azam Swati in 2023 praised the Indian army chief for being honest.[13]

The second-biggest army in the world has had a colourful past, filled with acts of braveries and vivid memories of maintaining peace and security and conducting rescue operations during natural calamities and disasters.

Indian army played a major role in World War II, which is still remembered in Western countries such as the UK and France.[14] France paid tribute to them during the July 14 parade on Bastille Day.[15] Dr Richard Smith, professor at the Goldsmiths University of London, said “The process of Indianisation and the emergence of the Indian Army as a distinct organisation with its own culture and esprit de corps also underpinned the preference for Indian over West Indian, and later African, soldiers.”[16]










[10] https://www.guardian2zotagl6tmjucg3lrhxdk4dw3lhbqnkvvkywawy3oqfoprid.onion/world/video/2014/sep/08/indian-army-kashmir-flood-video







Fadia Jiffry

Fadia Jiffry

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