Cool Kashmir, Boiling Sub-continent!

There has been a significant change in the physical climate both in the entire sub-continent and the Valley of Kashmir. Apparently it is part of the global climate change. In the middle of June it has snowed on Bhaderwah Mountains and may be other places also. The night temperature has been sometimes around 11 degrees Celsius which is unusual for the month of June. In fact, a recent photograph in a local daily showed a man carrying kangris for sale (Kashmiri earthen pot with hot coals used by local population…

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Is Kashmir headed towards major catastrophe?

After the April 9 “human shield” episode for which Major Leetul Gogoi was rewarded with the Army Chief’s commendation certificate, the ire against the Indian Army has risen manifold. It is a repulsive celebration of hate. It seems to be in competition with hate-mongering aired by TV channels against Kashmiris. This is fraught with serious consequences, which perhaps neither side has calculated. Most of the Kashmiris do understand that the Indian Army landed when the state was invaded by Pakistani troops in 1947. Locals assisted the Army in pushing back…

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The irresolvable Kashmir ROW

The most devilishly complex issue is Kashmir. Broadly speaking, Pakistan has, with the help of the US, played its Kashmir card better than India There seems to be no cure-all solution that can undo the strained historical dynamics of Indo-Pak relations At the moment, Indo-Pak relations are under a severe strain. Having been ambassador to Pakistan in the early 1980s, I have retained a deep interest in the developments in that country. While writing about Pakistan and India relations, one must keep three things in mind. Indo-Pak relations are accident…

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Kashmir, as a separate country!

M.Ashraf There was recently a news item about the UN showing Kashmir as a separate country. The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) have inserted Jammu & Kashmir in the “Country/Geographical area” section in their “Advanced search for Civil Society Organization”. This gives an impression of the State being treated as a separate country by the UN. Well, just showing Kashmir as a separate country may not change its present physical position but somehow it reminds one about the Kashmir’s ancient history when it was an independent…

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Student Unrest; The answer does not lie in closure of educational institutions

Malik Zahra Khalid Education is the first casualty of year 2017 protests as the government is caught in a fix. They are finding it hard to handle student protests across Kashmir. It all started on April 15 when the police and the security forces entered into the premises of Degree College Pulwama, thrashed students and teachers. The news of dozens of students with serious injuries in the police action spread like fire and a chain reaction followed in the colleges and schools across the valley. Had the government fixed the…

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The Danger of becoming Jammu Vs Kashmir

I spent most of last week in Kashmir with a team from the Kolkata-based Centre for Peace and Progress led by its chairman OP Shah, meeting everyone we could. That, of course, included four Hurriyat leaders – Mirwaiz Omar Farooq; Shabbir Ahmed Shah; A.M. Bandey – and the one who’s got everyone’s goat: Syed Ali Shah Geelani. But we also met Governor N.N. Vohra, who not only spent 90 minutes briefing us in detail, but also thanked us most generously for making the visit, underlining the need to reach out…

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Ikhwan Tales from Kashmir

After suspected gunmen shot dead Rashid Billa at his Hajin residence, the Ikhwan tales were again in demand. We visited the belt to understand how the cult worked and what the costs were Kuka Parray’s Ikhwan headquarters in Hajin turned into campaign office for 1996 elections. (Pic: Agencies) On a chilly February evening in 2017, Shahid, a young boy from Hajin (Bandipora), was waving desperately at incoming vehicles hoping to get a ride home. “Hajin,” he turned around and asked the man sitting in the back seat. “Yes,” the man replied…

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Spontaneous protests wrongfoot police, loosening India’s grip on Kashmir

Images of students confronting police on campuses have come to symbolise Kashmiri protests against Indian rule as much as gun-toting militants in fatigues, in what security officials and separatist leaders say is a dangerous new phase of the conflict. The sharp rise in violence in recent weeks is more spontaneous than before, complicating the task of Indian security forces trained largely in counter-insurgency and poorly equipped to contain broader unrest. A political stalemate in India’s only Muslim-majority state is a further hurdle to resolving the long-running Kashmir dispute, as is…

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From Akbar to Modi, Kashmiris have a history of pelting stones at oppressors

Muhammad Faysal In 1586, the Mughal imperial army finally entered the valley of Kashmir, after being defeated twice by Kashmiri forces. The Kashmiri emperor, Sultan Yusuf Chak, had already been taken prisoner by Akbar and exiled to what’s now the Indian state of Bihar. As the Mughal empire consolidated itself in Srinagar, it was met with local resistance during its rule. Noted Kashmiri poet and historian, Zareef Ahmad Zareef, says that this was the first time young Kashmiris started throwing stones at foreign rulers. He notes that “the resistance was…

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Is India losing Kashmir?

Soutik Biswas – India correspondent As India’s most restive region stares down the abyss of what a commentator calls another “hot summer of violence”, the doom-laden headline has returned with a vengeance: Is India losing Kashmir? Last summer was one of the bloodiest in the Muslim-dominated valley in recent years. Following the killing of influential militant Burhan Wani by Indian forces last July, more than 100 civilians lost their lives in clashes during a four-month-long security lockdown in the valley. It’s not looking very promising this summer. This month’s parliamentary election…

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