On 5 Aug., 2020 , G.C. Murmu, the former lieutenant governor of Kashmir resigned. This was followed by the appointment of Manoj Sinha, a BJP leader as the lieutenant of the state. Many speculations were being made and this was viewed as the first whole hearted political appointment with a long term plan in Kashmir.
Kashmir has had a peculiar history of not having a politician as a governor in the past 71 years. This has led to creation of political vacuum in the area. In one of his interviews, Proff. Saifuddin Soz said, “One of problems with Kashmir is that no Indian leaders have chosen to use politics to deal with it but agents.” This points out to the government’s perspective as they never saw it as a political issue. Rather a military or a security issue.”
Recent happenings have worsened the situation owing to absence of a democratically elected government. Further the situation needed immediate handling due to upliftment of Article 370 and the centre being bifurcated. In such conditions, GC Murmu didn’t carry the kind of weight needed, reports say.
In Srinagar, people on ground saw Murmu as a decent man. The government however, felt that he didn’t come with a political acumen needed in a sensitive state like Kashmir. Manoj Sinha, on the other hand, enjoys confidence of both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. He is also known to as a low-key but a hardworking politician. Also, he is not aggressive and has a combat approach.
Certain political viewers give another theory. This highlights the statement by GC Murmu, stating his non reservation in favor of resumption of 4G networks in the state, that contradicted what the government wanted. Further, he made a random comment about early elections in J&K. Election Commission held him for that. This speaking out of turn is regarded the immediate trigger for the process.
Appointment of Manoj Sinha is appreciated as a step towards removing the political vacuum from J&K. This is the first time in it’s history that Kashmir has had a full time politician as its leader. Experts view this as a potential start of the electoral politics in Kashmir, which was much needed!