The 2019 manifesto of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) states: "In the last five years, we have made all necessary efforts to ensure peace in Jammu and Kashmir".

But, if anything, the disputed territory is witnessing more violence, as 2018 was Indian-administered Kashmir's deadliest year in 10 years. At least 586 people were killed and, according to rights groups, 160 of them were civilians.

Both the United Nations and Amnesty International have accused Indian security forces of using excessive force in the region. The UN has specifically raised concerns about the use of pellet-firing shotguns by Indian security forces between 2016 and 2018, describing it as "one of the most dangerous weapons used against protesters".

On UpFront, BJP's national spokesman Nalin Kohli rejected the accusations and criticised protesters for using stones as weapons.

"There's certainly no scope to pick up stones, to pick up weapons, and then use that to say we have a legitimate process. If you use force, expect back force, not roses."

In this UpFront Web Extra, we discuss the escalation of violence in Kashmir under Modi's leadership, including the controversial use of pellet guns by Indian security forces against protesters.

For more, watch the full interview here.

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Source: Al Jazeera