Fact-finding in Kashmir

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Fact-finding in Kashmir
By: News 18
15 August 2019
 

`Real Situation Quite Different`: Activists Report Claim Situation Kashmir `Not Normal`. Noted economist Jean Dreze and activists Maimoona Mollah, Kavita Krishnan and Vimal Bhai travelled to various parts of Kashmir on 9–13 August to assess the ground situation after special status to Jammu and Kashmir was withdrawn.

NEW DELHI—Deserted streets, worried faces and an air of uncertainty these are some of the snapshots from Kashmir that a group of activists brought back after a five-day visit to the Valley.

Noted economist Jean Dreze and activists Maimoona Mollah, Kavita Krishnan and Vimal Bhai travelled to various parts of Kashmir from August 9-13 to assess the ground situation after special status to Jammu and Kashmir was withdrawn.

Releasing a report on the visit at a press conference, they alleged that the real situation in Kashmir is quite different from what is being portrayed.

A government spokesperson, when asked, chose not to comment on claims by the four activists.

In Srinagar, Munir Khan, additional director general of Jammu and Kashmir Police, said there were localised incidents in various parts of the city and other districts in the Valley but these were contained and dealt with locally.

According to Vimal of the National Alliance of People`s Movement the situation is anything but normal.

Kashmiri residents are virtually caged in their own homes, with all communication lines snapped. Streets were deserted..., Vimal alleged at the press conference.

Dreze claimed protests by people have taken place, but they are either being contained or the government is not acknowledging them.

Also, army and paramilitary personnel have been deployed in massive numbers to keep a watch on them. People are constantly under watch and people are unable to move in a group, he said.

The well-known economist said the solidarity team visited various cities, including, Srinagar, Pampore, Pulwama, Anatnag, Sopore, Bijbehera and Bandipora, and interacted with people.

Vimal claimed the team visited a hospital in Srinagar and met a couple of boys who had suffered pellet gun injuries.

Maimoona Mollah of the All India Democratic Women`s Association said people in the Valley were enraged about not being consulted in the decision-making.

Will people of Bihar or Tamil Nadu not be outraged if their home state was bifurcated or trifurcated without them being consulted, Krishnan added.

The solidarity team had made a short video about their visit, and it was to be screened during the press conference. However, the activists claimed the Press Club told them that it could not be screened on its premises due to some issues.

Reaching out to Kashmiris with messages of hope and optimism, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a televised speech on August 8, assured them of all round development, early and transparent elections and end to terrorism.

The Centre has also bifurcated Jammu and Kashmir into two UTs -- Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.

Original article

Download full report: “Kashmir Caged

Photo on front page: Protestors take to the streets in Kashmir to demonstrate their opposition to India’s revocation of occupied Kashmir’s autonomous status. Source: AP. Image on this page: Map of Kashmir districts and zones separately occupied by Pakistan and India. Source: Time of India.

See also:

‘Occupation’: India arrests more than 1,300 as embattled citizens reveal intensifying crackdown

Activists Denied Permission to Show Kashmir Video at Press Club

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Israel is playing a big role in India’s escalating conflict with Pakistan

The India-Israel relationship is not ideological, but it is being framed as such

Israel arms company signs $100m missile deal with India army

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