Kashmir facts exploited

Kashmir Magazine

Q: How will you define the current situation in Kashmir?


The situation both inside Kashmir and on LOC is extremely volatile. A war has been declared on the people of Kashmir by the Indian state .Whether you a hold a gun to resist or a stone or a slogan you are treated equally –as an enemy. Killings and repression have touched a new low and people are being squeezed on all sides. All avenues of expression have been choked by the state through use of force. Lies, viscous propaganda and false narratives are being vehemently promoted through media against Kashmiris and our political struggle in India and abroad. Every effort is being made to crush people and their aspirations and label our just political movement as “sponsored and terrorist “.


Q Do you see the military strategy working?


Kashmir dispute is a reality and use of force cannot deter a people who have been relentlessly struggling for the past 30 years in particular ,in the face of worst repression and despite Indian states huge military presence and might on ground here. If 30 years of oppression resulting in tremendous sacrifices and loss could not make us give up our struggle for the realisation of our just political cause , does it not convey that people of Kashmir Chenab valley Rajori Kishtwar doda banihal and Jammu will not yield to force come what may. Today our youth are forced to take up arms as a natural reaction to oppression and repression. So is it not in the interest of all parties that Indian state give up its militaristic approach and accept that the issue has to be resolved politically.


Q: How do you see present situation, especially after government said that pro freedom leadership is “free to carry out their political and social activities?


Well within two days of this announcement by the agencies who rule over us, we were again caged and detained. We were not even allowed to offer funeral prayers in absentia or visit the families who lost their young boys to Indian bullets to express our condolences and share their grief. There is absolutely no space allowed for any political outreach or any expression of resistance dissent or protest. Unless there is a shift in Government Of Indias approach and dealing with the Kashmir issue and the people of Kashmir, such announcements will have no impact.


Q: Young boys are picking up guns, what is your understanding?


It is an extremely sad and worrisome fallout of the Non Resolution of the Kashmir dispute that our youth is getting consumed by it in such a manner. The intransigence of GOI to resolve the issue politically and instead use its military might as a means of resolution, has resulted in extreme repression on people and thwarting of all space for peaceful resistance is pushing many among our young boys to respond in kind and they pick up arms. That they leave their studies and personal dreams and barely trained in combat get killed in a totally disproportionate fight is very painful and disturbing.

If GOI gives up its militaristic approach to deal with the dispute and provides space for expression of political aspirations at individual and collective level and allows student bodies and activism, the youth can get dissuaded from taking up arms as an only alternative to fight repression and for achievement of their fundamental right, and their precious lives can be saved.


Q what would you tell them?


Our youth is our greatest resource and the future of our nation. Leadership salutes their courage conviction and sincerity to the just cause and their selfless dedication to it.It is what gives succor to our movement and strength to us.But the life and safety of our youth is a great concern for us.

My appeal to them is that while they stay commitment to the cause and it’s furtherance they also have to keep in mind that their life is extremely precious and they have to take great care of it. We urge them as they are most welcome to join the ranks of pro freedom camp and enrich it with new ideas and push. it’s true that the scope for political resistance has been chocked and that is the reason why the youth feel pushed to the wall and some take to arms. Political resistance has global legitimacy and acceptance, so it’s a more effective mode of resistance.


Q. How do you see student protests that sometimes turn violent?


As a spontaneous reaction to brute killings and repression that students are exposed to each day. Naturally it affects and angers them. Coming out of their classrooms on roads is the only way to respond and protest left with them. What space is their for students who want to express their response and opinion within the campus in a democratic way? As is normal world over, here all student bodies or forums are banned by the authorities, where students could interact and discuss or give vent their feelings. So they come out on roads and their anger sometimes turns violent and in turn they are injured by the forces who charge at them. As a journalist you know that authorities have even barred the coverage of these protests inside campus which also pushes students to come out on roads so that their response is heard. If the authorities realize the futility of repression as a policy and allow student forums and activism students won’t need to come on roads. Students should also avoid confrontation with forces.




Q: Is Kashmir resistance movement taking an Islamic turn? If yes, what would be Hurriyat conference stand?



You see Kashmir resistance movement is a mass movement .it is about the political status and dispensation of the state of Jammu and Kashmir that is to be decided as per the will of the people of the state. It’s a is political movement based on the universal right of people to decide their political status and future as a nation, an opportunity that was given to all the people of the subcontinent in 1947 except the people if J&K. It was promised to us at the UN by both India and Pakistan and many resolutions were passed in this regard. That is the Hurriyat stand.

For the past 70 years we are struggling to achieve this right which is denied to us by use of brute force. While our struggle is political our religious faith acts as a moral force to motivate us to remain steadfast to our just cause and bear the hardships inflicted upon us. As Jammu and Kashmir happens to be Muslim majority territory this fact is exploited by the Indian state to demonize a people as terrorists and miscreants and equate our movement with terrorism, through an irresponsible and false discourse. The consequence of this propaganda is that it has further pushed some among the youth who have taken to arms towards religious extremism as a factor of motivation which gives it an Islamic turn.



Q: You were very optimistic when Modi became prime minister of India, What happened later?


Our optimism rose from our experience with Mr. Vajpayee who belonged to the same party as Mr. Modi. He talked of resolving the Kashmir dispute not within the confines of any constitution but within the ambit of humanity. It was a huge shift. He even did walk the talk somewhat before he was removed from office. We though Mr. Modi would take off from where Mr. Vajpayee left .But Mr. Modi showed that he was no Vajpayee and instead believes in pursuing a policy of military might and propaganda in dealing with the people of Kashmir and the dispute.



Q: Recently JRL has said NO for the talks, what is the alternative or a way ahead?


The best and most transparent way to resolve the Kashmir dispute is to give the people the Right to Self-determination as promised.

Talks can be an alternative option to resolve the conflict among parties but it entails that you first acknowledge the problem and then look at ways and options to satisfy the concerns and needs of stakeholders, especially main stakeholders who in this case are the people of Kashmir. But if GOI refuses to acknowledge the basic dispute how do we move forward?



Q: In the past Indian media has blamed that’s sons of pro-freedom leadership enjoy life while as poor youth die? Your opinion?


A large section of Indian media is on a mission to create propaganda and false narratives on Kashmir in order to take away the focus from the basic issue and mislead public opinion especially in India and abroad about it. Its used as a strategy to undermine the dispute and dilute it.

Part of that propaganda is such mischievous statements in order to create misgivings about the leadership among people.

When my father who was a pro freedom leader was martyred I was 16. I decided to carry forward his mission and joined the movement and since then have been serving the cause in my big/small way. I didn’t really get to “enjoy life” as is being suggested. So all this is rubbish.

We need to remember that every segment of our society Irrespective of poor or rich educated or uneducated man or woman leadership or common man is contributing to the movement and has suffered and sacrificed in some way or the other for the just cause. While the sacrifices of some are huge and irreparable we also have to acknowledge small sacrifices made by some others.
Since 1990 all people especially our youth that is sacrificing its life and limb belongs as much to the educated and well to do families as to the poorer section. So we should be wary of such divisions being deliberately created.



Q: You represent the chair for Kashmir at OIC? Do you think you have been able to gather support for the resolution of the Kashmir ?


Its been six years since I last attended the contact group meeting at OIC as my travel documents stand impounded. We are not allowed to highlight the dispute and the resulting human right violations internationally. It is very important to create awareness and gather support for our just cause globally as it will help in the resolution of the dispute. A lot needs to be done on that front. Non-resident Kashmiris who are working or settled abroad can play an important role in creating awareness and gathering support for our struggle. They should come forward in this regard and pool in their efforts.





Such a heinous crime is a grave assault on humanity and civilization.. That any humans can stoop to such despicable level for fulfilment of their nefarious agenda of eviction and displacement of a small community of Bakerwals from its land and then sections of the community to which these beasts belong hold rallies in their support is shockingly unbelievable. Every human irrespective of their religion, ideology, belief or background should in unison demand an exemplary punishment for these beasts who have shamed all mankind. To fall prey to the communalisation of such an incident as we saw in parts of Jammu and support rallies and bandhs in its favor does no good to the community that is doing so. It only brings shame upon them.