A militant’s promise, a Pandit’s trust

In Hall village of Pulwama, an aged Kashmiri Pandit tells how love of a newly purchased house made him resist migration years ago when members of his community fled and left him alone to witness an otherwise prosperous village disintegrating into mounds of rubble. In 1989, Omkar Nath Bhat had retired from the Horticulture department as field assistant and purchased a new house. He had put his life’s savings in buying it but before he could settle in the new house, Kashmir witnessed into a wave of militancy. The rumour…

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We Find A Voice: Kashmir Once again shot into international headlines

Historically, Kashmiris since 1819 have always greeted the voices raised from outside the state against their oppression and in support of their cause. In 1934, when Mahatma Gandhi in response to a missive by a Kashmiri Pandit leader, Prem Nath Bazaz wrote to him in a letter dated May 15, 1934, “Seeing that Kashmir is predominantly Mussalman it is bound to become one day a Mussalman state. A Hindu prince can therefore only rule by not ruling, i.e., by allowing the Mussalmans to do as they like by abdicating when…

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A hard outlook will have pitfalls in Kashmir

KASHMIR is happy, somewhat. The PDP-BJP split was much awaited; by people who were unable to reconcile to the rule of the saffron party by proxy. Fear was deeply entrenched in the minds of the locals that right-wing Hindutva forces, with the high pitch for the abrogation of Article 370, may succeed in undermining Kashmir’s special status. Naturally, Kashmiri Muslims were insecure after the alliance came about. And so, it became easier to support the forces of violence, as for them, the PDP had committed an unpardonable sin by shaking…

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Infinite quest for permanent solution in J&K: An unconventional roadmap towards a permanent solution

Well, as a fiction author, I often am in a position to take liberties which policy makers and people in decision making positions can’t. This ‘wishful thinking” it the audacity of hope and optimism. My latest book, “When The Chief Fell in Love” has a maverick futuristic chapter set in the Kashmir of 2030. It imagines a Kashmir where all is well and working backwards, spells out a broad roadmap towards achieving that utopian solution to the Kashmir dispute. Peeling off some of the surreal elements of the roadmap and…

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Poplar: The devil of Kashmir

Poplars locally called cottonwood tree are fast-growing, weak-wooded trees that lack ornamental flowers and fruits. Many species are native to the U.S. and prefer moist soils. Some poplars grow more than 70 feet tall and the deciduous leaves are alternate, simple and usually have coarse toothed margins. The trees have a yellow fall color. Wind-pollinated flowers usually appear in the spring before leaves unfold during March to May. Trees have either male (staminate) or female (pistillate) flowers that are located in drooping catkins. When fruits mature, the capsules split open…

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Kashmir – An issue of Humanity versus Brutality

Kashmir is simply not an issue of dispute between India and Pakistan but today it is an issue of humanity versus brutality. Kashmir, the largest militarised zone in the world with more than 700,000 Indian boots carrying and using lethal weapons with impunity under the legal protection known as AFSPA, Armed Forces Special Powers Act. This gives Indian forces a free hand to do what they will without any accountability. AFSPA enables the military to carry out gross human rights abuses that include enforced disappearances, torture, rape, sexual abuse and…

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Why Jammu uses hatred as a Political Weapon?

Asim Hashmi Rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua, Jammu has shaken the whole world. But certain Jammu based groups, self-proclaimed saviours of the region, did not find it appealing to their conscience. It was not enough to fill their appetite for hate. They started an agitation to scuttle and sabotage the process of law to save the perpetrators of this most heinous crime from justice. Though this incident shook the conscience of the whole civilised world, forcing even Secretary General of the United Nation to issue a…

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The idea of Kashmir

Jammu Kashmir can act as a bridge of friendship for India and Pakistan Khurram Wani As a believer, I have faith in Gods intervention for oppressed people which comes sooner or later through different forces of nature to break their miserable plight. And it is not only the believer in me that feels that a change will soon take place to break the Kashmir political stalemate but major changes in contemporary politics pave way for the same. Let me elucidate Strengthening local rivalries Ever since Narendara Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party…

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As stones draw blood, It’s time for Kashmir’s Civil Society to realise army is not the Villain

The security forces do not go around seeking an excuse to attack civilians. It is just the other way around with stone pelters looking for opportunities to create mayhem and chaos, writes Lt Gen (Retd) DS Hooda. Lt Gen (Retd) DS Hooda The death of 22 year-old R Thirumani, a tourist from Tamil Nadu, has exposed the stark reality of the direction in which Kashmir protests are headed. Violence and brutality is quickly overshadowing the ‘political’ character of resistance. Tourists were recently attacked at Pahalgam, civilians have been killed in…

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Divide between ‘Hindu’ Jammu & ‘Muslim’ Kashmir is spreading across India

Sagarika Ghose The gruesome rape and murder of an eight-year-old in Kathua took place in January. That it took three months for a court monitored investigation to be completed, that lawyers from Jammu sought to prevent the police from filing the chargesheet and a crowd mobilised by the Hindu Ekta Manch shouted slogans in support of the accused even as counter protests were held in the Valley, speaks volumes for the steadily deepening jagged fissure that now exists between a so called ‘Hindu’ Jammu and a ‘Muslim’ Kashmir. The Kathua…

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