After August 5, It’s hard for India’s Muslims to not feel Orphaned in their Motherland

Arfa Khanum Sherwani August 5 was a difficult day for anyone who still believes in the idea of a secular and democratic India. The spectacle of a prime minister performing the ‘bhumi pujan’ for his political parivar’s temple in Ayodhya did no credit of the world’s largest democracy, one that incidentally is also home to more than 200 million Muslims. In November 2019, the Supreme Court gave the disputed site where the Babri Masjid stood – till it was forcibly demolished in 1992 – to the Hindu litigants and said…

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From Kashmir to Ayodhya, the BJP’s total domination of politics

Barkha Dutt You had to be in Ayodhya this week, as I was, to understand the enormous political vindication the bhoomi pujan ceremony for the Ram Mandir affords the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The decision to build a temple and provide an alternative site for the Babri masjid may have been one delivered by the court, but for the party and its followers, the labour was entirely that of the Narendra Modi government. While the streets were dressed up in hues of saffron — balloons, festoons, flags — the dominant…

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India’s new domicile law in Kashmir amplifies demographic fears

For almost a century, no outsider was allowed to buy land and property in Indian-controlled Kashmir. That changed Aug. 5 last year when India’s Hindu nationalist government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi stripped the Himalayan state’s semi-autonomous powers and downgraded it to a federally governed territory. It also annulled the long-held hereditary special rights its natives had over the disputed region’s land ownership and jobs. Since then, India has brought in a slew of changes through new laws. They are often drafted by bureaucrats without any democratic bearings and…

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Conditions in Kashmir Not Normal: US Foreign Affairs Committee raises concern with GoI

The foreign affairs committee of the United States Congress has expressed concern over conditions in Kashmir in a bipartisan letter issued on the day that marked the first year of abrogation of special status of Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370. “We note with concern that conditions in Jammu and Kashmir have not normalised one year after India’s repeal of Article 370 and the establishment of Jammu and Kashmir as Union Territory,” Chairman of the Committee Eliot L. Engel and ranking member Michael T. McCaul wrote in a letter. Last…

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Turkey says Article 370 abrogation did not bring peace to Kashmir, India calls remark ‘Biased & Incorrect’

The Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday criticised Turkey’s remarks against India’s decisions related to Jammu and Kashmir, and described them as “factually incorrect, biased and unwarranted”. Turkey had on Monday claimed that India’s move to rescind the region’s special status had not “contributed to the peace and stability in the region”. “We would urge the government of Turkey to get a proper understanding of the ground situation in India and refrain from interfering in its internal matters,” foreign ministry Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said during a press briefing on Thursday.…

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Unite on Kashmir Issue Or will move ahead with or without you: Shah Mehmood Qureshi warns OIC

Minister of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan, Shah Mehmood Qureshi, on Wednesday, warned the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to stop delaying plans on the convening of a meeting of its Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) on Jammu and Kashmir. The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) is an international organization founded in 1969, consisting of 57 member states. The organisation states that it is “the collective voice of the Muslim world” and works to “safeguard and protect the interests of the Muslim world in the spirit of promoting international peace and…

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Pakistan will continue to raise Kashmir Issue at world stage: Imran Khan

Notwithstanding the unsuccessful attempts made by him to raise the Kashmir issue at the world stage, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday said his country would continue to raise the matter at all international forums. Addressing the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir’s Legislative Assembly on the first anniversary of India’s decision to revoke the special status of Jammu and Kashmir on August 5, 2019, Khan claimed that many world leaders didn’t even know what was going on in Kashmir. Khan said that it was due to his government’s efforts that the Kashmir…

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UN discusses Kashmir for third time since abrogation of article 370

The UN Security Council discussed disputed Kashmir at Pakistan’s request on Wednesday for the third time since India’s Hindu nationalist government decided to end the Muslim-majority region’s semi-autonomy a year ago. The United Nations’s most powerful body did not take any action or issue a statement after the virtual meeting held behind closed doors. Nonetheless, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said afterwards holding the meeting signified “that Jammu and Kashmir is an international dispute firmly on the agenda of the Security Council and has nullified, yet another time, the…

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Sajad Khandey, BJP sarpanch shot dead in Kulgam

A day after the first anniversary of abrogation of Article 370, a BJP sarpanch was shot dead in Kulgam district on Thursday, officials said. They said Sajad Ahmed Khandey was shot at by gunmen outside his residence at Vessu, leaving him critically wounded. “He was shifted to hospital where doctors declared him brought dead,” an official said. Soon after the incident, security forces cordoned off the area to trace the attackers. A police officer said the sarpanch was staying in the Vessu migrant camp along with several sarpanches. “He left…

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Year after revocation of Article 370, Alienation grows in Kashmir, Frustration visible in Jammu

A year after the BJP-led Central government revoked Article 370 and cut Jammu and Kashmir into two Union territories (UTs) of Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) on August 5 last year, alienation in Kashmir has increased manifold while the economy and the polity lie in shambles. Frustration is also growing in the Hindu-majority Jammu as the people are beginning to feel the impact of the changes in the business atmosphere and polity of the region. Like in Kashmir, a sense of disempowerment has grown in the region, which has…

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