Posts Tagged ‘Delhi’

This is a press release by the JKCS and the Kashmiri women fighting on behalf of Kunan Poshpora villagers

BOYCOTT B.G. VERGHESE

Press Statement
24 June 2013

On 22 June 2013, for the first time, the villagers of Kunan Poshpora spoke to the civil society and media of Srinagar. They spoke of rape, torture, suffering, pain and courage. More specifically, they spoke of the fight ahead. They vowed to continue the struggle for justice, and never to forget persons responsible for the cover up of the Kunan Poshpora case.

B.G. Verghese was called a liar by the villagers of Kunan Poshpora and several civil society members in the audience. He headed the Press Council of India fact finding team report on Kunan Poshpora, which was ‘appointed’ by Indian army. But, he never visited the villages of Kunan and Poshpora. He, through the report and subsequently, has sought to malign the men and women of Kunan Poshpora. He has called them shameless, as according to him the allegation was orchestrated on behalf of the militants.

In the recently held public meeting B.G. Verghese was accused of actively abetting the rape and torture of Kunan Poshpora. It is public knowledge that B.G. Verghese served as an “Information Consultant” for the Indian Defence Minister.

The re-opening of the Kunan Poshpora case also implies that those involved in cover ups and in maligning the women of Kunan Poshpora had lied. Therefore recognizing his criminal role in the Kunan Poshpora case, it was unanimously resolved that B.G. Verghese is to be socially and professionally boycotted. The civil society vowed to not engage with him. Further, anyone who does engage with B.G. Verghese will in turn be boycotted. B.G. Verghese presently occupies positions of importance in the Center for Policy Research, Delhi and the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, Delhi. The Support Group for Justice for Kunan Poshpora alongwith other civil society stakeholders will communicate directly with these institutions, and any other institution that may have ties with him, to immediately stop all engagement with him.

We urge civil society groups, conscientious citizens in India and Jammu and Kashmir that until B.G. Verghese is prosecuted for his role in the Kunan Poshpora case, there must be an absolute boycott: he must not be invited to speak at public functions, he must not be allowed to occupy any positions of responsibility, and he must constantly be reminded of his own criminality.

Finally, before and after the 22 June 2013 press conference, the State has continued its intimidation. The Jammu and Kashmir Police [Tregham Police Station], Indian army [specifically 24 Rashtriya Rifles, based at Trehgam] and other agencies, have sought to intimidate the villagers of Kunan Poshpora. They have gone to the villages, demanded answers to questions about the case and sought to intimidate them through repeated phone calls. This will not be accepted. Legal action will be taken against anyone who seeks to intimidate and threaten the villagers of Kunan Poshpora. They will, first, be named in public, and then dragged to court.

Representatives of the Support Group for Justice for Kunan Poshpora
1. Ifrah Mushtaq
2. Samreena Mushtaq
3. Uzafa Basu
4. Uzma Qureshi

DNA Special: Agents decide how much you will pay for Kashmiri apples

Published: Monday, Apr 1, 2013,
By Sandeep Pai | Place: New Delhi | Agency: DNA

Have you ever wondered why Kashmiri apple costs Rs 105/kg in Delhi, Rs110/kg in Mumbai and Rs 120/kg in Bangalore even though its production cost is just about Rs 35/kg? It’s all thanks to agents who on the one hand rob the orchard owners of their earnings and fleece the customers on the other.

Commission agents in major cities such as Delhi manipulate the market and hoard apple to create artificial scarcity and sell it at a high price. For this, they resort to self-buying – they themselves buy the apple in their own name or their men instead of selling it to market immediately.

The draft report of the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) on production and marketing of apple in Jammu and Kashmir – a copy of it is exclusively available with DNA– says, “Supply is manipulated in artificial manner generally at agents level through hoarding of apple in cold stores for short duration and controlled atmosphere stores (CAS) for long duration up to 6-9 months.”

The report says that if a kilo of apple is sold at Rs 100 in market, the grower gets only Rs 26, while the rest goes to retailers and agents.

The commission agents start self buying the apple in July/August, the report says. In Azadpur mandi, around 20% of these agents are big, 20% small and 60% medium in terms of turnover and financial power.

Price manipulation takes place by artificially quoting price so high so as to attempt exclusion of other smaller buyers from auction and then bringing it down next day/next time to self-buy at whatever price, mostly reduced price because bigger ‘lots’ of boxes cannot be purchased by smaller buyers even if price is low,” the report said.

Even large open auctions are manipulated. “Largely, open auction takes the shape of self buying or buying by market functionaries of agents like ‘fixed match’,” the report says.
Once the auction is manipulated and the apple is bought at a cheap rate, the agents store it in the CAS units to manipulate the supply in market. According to the NABARD report, agents are now setting up cold stores and CAS to store self purchased apple from market.

Read more here –http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report_dna-special-agents-decide-how-much-you-will-pay-for-kashmiri-apples_1817662

 

DNA Special: Agent’s apple growers don’t get fruit of labour

Published: Sunday, Mar 31, 2013,
By Sandeep Pai | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

You may be cursing when you pay a high price for Kashmiri apples, wondering what share of the moneyorchard owners would receive. But in reality, the apple growers wouldn’t be even knowing the price at which the fruit is sold in the mainland, leave alone reaping profits.

Then, where does the money go? Into the pockets of commission agents, who, sitting in Delhi or any of the major cities, exploit and cheat the apple growers in Kashmir of crores of rupees every year. The apple growers live only in debt and distress, thanks to these agents.

The draft report of the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) on production and marketing of apple in Kashmir — a copy of it is exclusively available with DNA — blows the lid off this scam which is affecting the Rs 4,000 crore apple industry that kept the Valley alive even during the peak of militancy. The report will be submitted to the J&K government soon.

Exposing the role of commercial banks (mainly J&K Bank) in the scam, the report says they give advance to commission agents (CAs) instead of farmers. The CAs then lend the same money to apple growers at usurious rates. “In this way banks are (indirectly) contributing to survival of the old practice of ruthless, continued over-dependence of small growers of informal funding by agents,” says the report.

During 2011-12, apple growers in J&K got an advance of Rs1,200 crore (This excludes loans availed of under the ‘Apple Project’ of the J&K Bank) of which only Rs 200 crore was from banks. The amount funded by agents to the apple growers that year was Rs 1,024 crore, of which Rs 645 crore (63%) came from Delhi-based agents and Rs 207 crore (20%) from Kashmir-based CAs.

READ MORE HERE-http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report_dna-special-agent-s-apple-growers-don-t-get-fruit-of-labour_1817367

 

Neelam Pandey, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, March 25, 2013
First Published: 00:50 IST(25/3/2013) |
The Delhi government has stopped monthly cash assistance to Kashmiri migrants pending submission of Aadhar Card (Unique Identification number).
According to sources, in a number of districts, cash assistance has not been disbursed for the past three months or more. Kashmiri migrants are entitled to a cash assistance of Rs. 1,650 per person subject to a ceiling of R6,600 per family per month of four or more members. According to Delhi government, this cash assistance is provided to over 3,500 families in the city.
The families have decided to meet the divisional commissioner over this issue.
“Aadhar card has only added to our problems. Our identity is clearly established for more than two decades since exodus in 1990. Then, why does the government time and again invent ways to harass us,” said Ramesh Handoo, a resident of Sarita Vihar who has not got aid so far.
A number of them do not want an identity card which establishes their residence as Delhi.
“We have been told to enrol ourselves and only then we will get the cash assistance. I am a Kashmiri and not a resident of Delhi. If given an option, I will return to the Valley. Why should I get a document which will establish my identity differently. All these years we have been getting the cash assistance, so why should it be linked to UID now? Later, I might be denied the option of going there as my identity gets linked to Delhi,” said Rakesh Kaul, who hasn’t received cash assistance for the past three months.
The scheme was started on April 29, 1990 when the government paid the migrants R125 per month to a person, subject to a ceiling of R500 per family of four or more.
“We had received a few complaints about bogus persons claiming the cash assistance. We decided to link it to UID to keep a check on them. They can simply get themselves enroled and provide the copy of the enrolment,” said Dharam pal, revenue secretary and divisional commissioner, Delhi government.
The Delhi government had recently made Aadhar mandatory for availing various government services, including Annashree Yojana, old-age pension, marriage registration, registration of property and birth and death certificates.

 

  • Musab Iqbal,

In Kunan Poshpora perhaps lie the truth of not only largest democracy, which moves on million boots, but also the secret of its non- violent conscience. The society whose conscience find no stimulation from the ‘distant’ brutality on it’s top, on it’s margin and in it’s heart.

It reminds us how the existence of oppressive power is denial of dignity to the oppressed. It reminds us of the history that is present and a past, which is not forgettable, and about the future which will emerge from the history of ruins.

The dream to come true is the dream of complete freedom from the rule of the power, which decides for itself and operates on us. The future is not known but what known is the presence of resistance; resistance against the ‘obvious’ – obvious of the power.

Can one speak after such an ordeal – a brutal operation on mind and body but then does ‘one’ remain after such a tragedy. There is no ‘one’ left – the experience transformed ‘one’ into ‘many’ and then into ‘another one’. The impossibility thus is in that very transformation whose beginning point is the singularity of the ‘collective pain’ shared by all but experienced by ‘one’. The moral of ‘one’ is then not in resistance – resistance to brutality but in the existential resistance to that very ‘other’. Resistance to the very operation of brutal has no meaning but the resistance to existence is the essence of that transformed ‘one’: Another One.

Can ones Army be imagined to rape and traumatize its own people but then we are forced to ask do army have any ‘people’ as ‘own’ people. The deployment itself is a detachment from ‘own-ness’. The police in localities of ours if catches someone, does that someone remains police’s own or not. The organized movement to traumatize ends the possibility of ‘own’ and ‘people’.

 

– 23rd February 2013, on his blog http://musab.in/

 

By on Feb 19th, 2013, Medianama

It appears that on the same date that orders were given for blocking URLs criticizing IIPM, pursuant to court orders, India’s Department of Telecom issued another set of orders for blocking 55 URLs (all Facebook pages) related to Afzal Guru, who India hanged on Feb 9th 2013, after his mercy petition was rejected by the President of India.
Outlook has published this order here (download it here).

We’ve taken great pains to transcribe the URLs below. Do tell us in the comments to this post whether they work for you or not, and which ISP you are trying to access them from. Most of the URLs do not work for us, on an MTNL Delhi connection.

In case there are other DoT orders floating around, asking for blocking of websites, or if you have a copy of court orders blocking access to websites, contact us at nikhil@medianama.com.

How should the DoT have approached these blocks?

Read our take on How India Should Approach Website Blocking.

Do follow our live blog for updates on Internet blocks in India.

http://www.facebook.com/aijjurather

http://www.facebook.com/ShaheedAfzalGuruMyBrotherInIslamq

http://www.facebook.com/iamzhk

http://www.facebook.com/RockersOfIslam

http://www.facebook.com/KMRNews

http://www.facebook.com/crushindia93

http://www.facebook.com/aijjurather

http://www.facebook.com/zahoorbhats

http://www.facebook.com/kashmir.university

http://www.facebook.com/G.YOUTHS2

http://www.facebook.com/pages/JK-NEWS-EXPRESS/171069332965404

http://www.facebook.com/pages/We-love-SYED-ALI-SHAH-Geelani-The-REAL-HERO-of-Kashmir-and-Kashmiries/124962984321521

http://www.facebook.com/love.kashmir

http://www.facebook.com/ShaheedAfzalGuru

http://www.facebook.com/najam.deen

http://www.facebook.com/afzal.guru.58

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Afzal-Guru/469200009813644

http://www.facebook.com/AfzalGuruShaheed

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Afzal-Guru-Tere-Khoon-Ka-Badla-Hum-Zaroor-Lenge/33708959735258

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru-HumSharminda-Hai-Apke-qatil-Zindah-Hai/152373608253289

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru-HumSharminda-Hai-Apke-qatil-Zindah-Hai/471812542872664

http://www.facebook.com/We-Love-Shaheed-Afzal-Guru/186267964830318

http://www.facebook.com/1mfans.Afzal.Guru

http://www.facebook.com/We-Will-Always-Love-Shaheed-Afzal-Guru/585941668086260

http://www.facebook.com/WeCondemnTheHangingOfMartyrAfzalGuru

http://www.facebook.com/Ya-ALLAH-Shaheed-Afzal-Guru-ki-Shahadat-Qubool-Farma/235071936629769

http://www.facebook.com/We-need-1000000-Fans-to-Say-Afzal-Guru-is-an-innocent-Kashmiri/374864545945948

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Afzal-Guru-Hero-of-Kashmir/293681247410674

http://www.facebook.com/AfzalGuruTheRealHero

http://www.facebook.com/Afzal-Guru-Shaheed-The-Legend-of-Kashmir/241388392663078

http://www.facebook.com/AfzalGuruYouAreOurHeroWeWillAlwaysRememberYou

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Afzal-guru-the-master-mind/402649003161737

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Afzal-GuruEvery-Kashmiri-represents-U/338145509623132

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Long-Live-Afzal-Guru/116592561851776

http://www.facebook.com/pages/pages/Shaheed-AFZAL-Guru/474844409243414

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru-_-the-Hero-of-Kashmir/101863843331652

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru/159449597538621

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru/206042402875704

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru/214890941988045

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru-The-Real-Hero-Of-Kashmir/303137599789484

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru-hum-badla-leke-rahenge/335623899890457

http://www.facebook.com/pages/RIP-Afzal-Guru-Shaheed/476146232442194

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-AFZAL-GURU/523309574366345

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-AFZAL-GURU/534215773279465

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-AFZAL-GURU-A-Real-Hero/597704906909706

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-AFZAL-GURU/601159259249900878

http://www.facebook.com/aijazahmad.teali

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru/440985435984495

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaheed-Afzal-Guru/416177145139332

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Shaeed-Mohammad-Afzal-Guru/439318776093479

http://www.facebook.com/pages/We-will-u-Olwayz-Afzal-guru/119207731592699

http://www.facebook.com/IAmAfzalGuru

http://www.facebook.com/Maktabulameer313

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Islamfighters/485700454815180

 

Hindustan Times
New Delhi, February 11, 2013,
When Kashmiris say they don’t feel part of India, they are only reiterating a truth that Indian politicians and governments voice all the time. What else does it mean when politicians and large sections of the media talk of how happy ‘Indians’ are at the hanging of Afzal Guru, when his execution is touted as a cathartic closure for ‘India’.

The last time I checked, there was curfew in Kashmir and thousands of other justice-loving people were deeply unhappy at the secretive execution, and at the use of the death penalty to fulfil some atavistic blood lust. How else to read the judges’ pronouncement — even as they noted discrepancies in the police version of his guilt — that the hanging was required to satisfy the ‘collective conscience’?  In fact, Durkheim’s phrase ‘collective consciousness’ conceals the manufacture of consent through the media, the courts and other institutions. And contrary to his prediction that in an interdependent and complex society we would see a growth in reparative justice, in India, what we see is the growth of a vulgar retributive justice, where primal passions are deliberately inflamed to create a divide between ‘us’ and ‘them’.‘Us’ in the context of contemporary India means the Bajrang Dal who distributed sweets to celebrate the hanging and blackened the faces of people with opposite views; it means the rightwing goons who groped and sexually abused female protesters outside a Delhi college last week with full police connivance.

But ‘us’ also includes the cynical coterie of Congress politicians who periodically decide to join the BJP bandwagon for electoral purposes. If opening the locks of the Babri Masjid and legislating against the Shah Bano judgement were permanent blots on Rajiv Gandhi’s claim to be secular, his son’s installation in the formal pecking order of the Congress has been accompanied by the opportunistic hanging of Afzal Guru.

Sonia Gandhi may have pleaded against the death penalty for Rajiv’s killers, but unless her party takes a principled position against the death penalty for all, this will seem like the rest of her liberal outreach programme, designed to ensure her own good name.

‘Them’ includes all the ordinary people of India — who have had their lands forcibly acquired, their homes burnt, their relatives killed  — in riots and pogroms. ‘Them’ are the seditious fisher folks of Kudankulam, the grave security threats who inhabit the mineral rich villages of Dantewada, the Naga elder and the Kashmiri woman.

And then there are some whose status as ‘us’ or ‘them’ depends on the political calculations of the day. Balwant Singh Rajoana, on death row for the assassination of former Punjab chief minister Beant Singh, may not be hanged because the Akali lobby is important to ‘us’.  But clearly it is not important enough for the victims of 1984 to get justice, in which case they fall into the ‘them’ category.

We are told that the ‘Law’ has taken its course, the ‘Law has come full circle’. Where is this law when the widows of Delhi 1984 are still waiting for justice — and people like HKL Bhagat have died before they could be hung (not that this was ever a worry for him); when the murderers of Gujarat 2002 are still roaming free, and having the EU and others cosy up to their government? Did the law come full circle when the murderers of Bathani Tola were acquitted? Where was the law when thousands of mass graves were uncovered in Kashmir and thousands ‘disappeared’; where is this law when women are raped and their rapist officers or jawans get full protection under the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA)?

Deponents at the Verma Commission provided a number of cases in Kashmir where the courts had prima facie indicted army personnel, but the central government refused to give permission to prosecute. The Upendra Commission clearly found that Thangjam Manorama was raped and murdered by personnel of the Assam Rifles in Manipur, but not one person has been punished. In Chhattisgarh, young bravehearts who filed rape cases against special police forces with great difficulty  — resulting in arrest warrants against the accused  — are being coerced to take their statements back. But then, I forgot, Kashmiris, Manipuris, the adivasis of central India — are not ‘us’, they are not ‘Indian’.

When asked why the AFSPA is needed to protect armed personnel — since rape can never be done in the line of duty — high-ranking officers come on television to say that 99% of the charges against the army are false, and the women are put up to it by Maoists and militants. So shall we assume then, that the women of the North-east, of Kashmir and adivasi India are congenital liars? Or that the law is designed to ensure they are fair game, a welcome pastime in the ‘course of duty’? Or perhaps, more simply, these women are not ‘Indians’.

If to be Indian is to accept the death penalty, if to be Indian is to accept the unjust hanging of a tortured man born of a tortured and alienated people, if to be Indian is to accept the rapes of my sisters and the impunity of its officers, let me say in the words of the Turkish poet, Nazim Hikmet, “Yes, I am a traitor, if you are a patriot, if you are a defender of our homeland, I am a traitor to my homeland; I am a traitor to my country… if patriotism is the claws of your village lords, … if patriotism is the police club, if your allocations and your salaries are patriotism,… if patriotism is not escaping from our stinking black-minded ignorance, then I am a traitor.”

Nandini Sundar teaches sociology at Delhi University. The views expressed by the author are personal.

 

 amnestyjandk

For long, Kashmir was portrayed in Bollywood movies a beautiful place on earth where actors were shown eating in its magnificent houseboats, drinking from fresh spring waters and making merry in the Valley’s lush slopes. But away from its conventional habit, post 1989 Hindi movies on Kashmir slowly harped on one theme by showing its audience that this isn’t the case any longer. Together with the politics in the sub continent that pushed for the armed rebellion after 1989 besides India’s roaring ‘integral part’ assertion to counter Pakistan’s ‘jugular vein’ stance over Kashmir, both proved a ready made fodder for directors of Bollywood. Films were soon replacing songs like ‘Kitni Khobsoorat Yeh Tasveer Hai, Yeh Kashmir Hai’ with fervent Sunny Deol slogans ‘Doodh Maangogey Toh Kheer Deengy, Kashmir Mangogey Toh Cheer Dengy’.

The picturisation of most of these films was different but the stance same: Pakistan was always a villain, Kashmiris hated violence and government soldiers were their saviors. Kashmir conflict was soon attracting film-makers as it promised an interesting plot and narrative often fixed with the official discourse of New Delhi. Very few went beyond that.

That’s why when I watched the actor-turned Director Aamir Bashir’s film Harud – a Kashmiri word for autumn — with a friend at my rented Delhi apartment last night, both of us were enthralled to watch how the film has grabbed those tense moments that always circulate in our conscious and sub-conscious mind back in Kashmir.

Harud abruptly brought back memories of those never ending circles of uncertainty and constant impression of the besieged mentality and the symbols of militarisation that have seeped into almost every aspect of human endeavour.

During my schooling, college and university life and then some early years at work, the feeling of being shackled in my unconscious and subconscious mind never faded. It became more and more prominent as I grew. It made me angry. I would fight with myself. I wanted to set myself free. From the conflict. The constant repression. And from the suffering. Just like Harud’s protagonist Rafiq, (Shahnawaz Bhat) who once made an abortive attempt to cross over the LoC but soon ended up handling his disappeared brother Tauqir’s camera. Tauqir, a tourist photographer, is one of the thousands of youth who disappeared since the conflict began.

Harud evokes memories of the early 1990s when soldiers would cordon towns, villages and hamlets together for days in search of militants and their sympathisers. They would line up the pehran-wearing natives and subject them to identification parades — a lengthy but powerful scene in Harud. I remember being in several such queues provoked by either grenade attacks or tip-offs that militants may sneak into the city. The soldier would smell our hands and then slap those who would disobey. Calling them uncle would raise their fury. ‘Sir’ would mellow down even a Lance Naik.

Besides other symbols of life, Harud shows routine Kashmir life that includes gun fights, militant ambushes, tetchy soldiers patrolling streets and manning checkpoints, houses with broken windowpanes overlooking deserted roads, and above all besiegedness of people and their minds.

Harud is set in autumn (the Decay as Aamir Bashir calls it) and begins with gun battles, protest marches and demand for Azadi. The censor board has muted the Azadi word in Urdu, however. But they have let the slogans ‘We want freedom’ (all references to independence) be in English. Rafiq tries to sneak across the LoC (one of the world’s largest militarised borders) to become a militant but fails. Soon he returns to live a depressed life of a daily newspaper boy. His father Yusuf (Reza Naji) is a traffic cop who is undergoing post-traumatic disorder (a condition that has hit over 50 lakh population of the Valley, according to one estimate). And with each passing day his condition worsens. Yusuf has lost his older son Tauqir. Images of young men like Rafiq, exploding cars outside the armed forces bunkers and barracks haunt him every day until he completely loses his mind.

Besides household chores, Rafiq’s mother Fatima (Shamim Basharat) participates in once-a-month sit-ins like hundreds of others to find their missing relatives. While Rafiq’s life takes no direction, a friend of Rafiq is ready to work under the blazing sun of Delhi to escape the kind of hell Kashmir was turning out to be. While the tragedies unfold, mentally ailing Yousuf emerges in front of a troopers’ bunker and then runs away. Soldiers follow him until they find Rafiq in the street. And then a falling Chinar leaf suggests the outcome. Rafiq is lying face down in his pehran. The gushing blood splattered in the street. He was shot dead. The family loses another son.

Harud dares to venture and probe those corners of Kashmiri mind which so far people from outside have failed to look upon, let alone project it in their films. That’s why sometimes it shocks me, surprises me, and forces me to think why Kashmiris were never understood as humans instead of being projected as agitation-prone terrorists, Pakistani sinisters, brain-washed separatists and subsidised rice-eating Indian boot lickers. There was no attempt to search those wounds, those yearnings, those pangs of siege, whichHarud has dared to touch and has successfully, if not fully, portrayed.

Hum Inquilab layengey Aur Society Ko Change Karengey,’ is a normal remark that comes from fresh batches of journalists but in Harud we have Rafiq trying to find solace thorough a camera his brother Tauqir left behind before disappearing. Tauqir would take pictures of incoming tourists. Rafiq, who accidentally finds the camera, looks into the view finder, often to find edgy soldiers consolidating their positions in streets, mountains and lakes.

Harud touches the much talked about subjects like some beneficiaries of the conflict. A scene shows a local journalist talking on phone about how a picture sold to some international outlet will fetch $250 to the agency. To the Delhi-based news channels communicating advent of a mobile service provider ‘BSNL’ in Kashmir is preferred over sit-ins of the mothers. Harud is mostly about how militarisation of the Valley invited siege mentality. It takes a side. And it may not go well among certain quarters.

The film, however, fails to contextualise the Kashmir conflict. It doesn’t say why the conflict began. But then it would have met fierce censor board opposition. Harud is for intellectual cinema goers and it has the ability to enthral the local audience only and not those who may not be completely conscious of the Kashmir situation.

Nevertheless, Harud dares to challenge the official narrative on Kashmir that has for long remained the key theme for most of the Hindi movies on Kashmir.

Author: Baba was born in conflict-ridden Kashmir where he attended school and army’s identification parades, briefly worked at his father’s cloth shop and survived some gun battles to complete masters degree in journalism from the Kashmir University. His career started with The Indian Express in Srinagar where he reported on the South Asia earthquake of 2005. In the following years, he wrote features for Kashmir’s first online news magazine Kashmir Newz and in 2008 he joined Rising Kashmir as a senior reporter where he covered 2008-09-10 civil unrest. He has also contributed to US-based wire CNSNews.com, BBC online and Canadian Dispatches International. Baba specializes in producing stories mostly on Kashmir conflict and water disputes in India. Baba joined Tehelka in 2010 and the next year saw him winning ICRC (Geneva)-Press Institute of India (PII) award for his news report on victims of armed conflict in Kashmir. Be it the landmines-rigged mountains of Kashmir or the water conflicts of central India, his work has won him accolades across the Valley and elsewhere

source- tehelka blog

By Abdul Majid Zargar

03 January, 2013
Countercurrents.org

In the backdrop of recent incident of gang-rape of a girl in Delhi, Mr. Wajahat Habibullah, Chairman National Minorities commission & former Chief information commissioner of India has admitted that there have been numerous & widespread allegations of rape against Indian Army in Kashmir which have largely remained uninvestigated with the result that culprits have gone unpunished. But regrettably it has taken nearly ten thousand rapes of kashmiri women (Figure provided by a reputed news portal-Kashmir Media Service) for his conscience to arouse and speak truth.

Mr. Habibullah has worked in various top positions in Kashmir and is privy to many dirty things & covert operations having been committed in Kashmir .One such covert operation hatched by then Director General of Police that Killed Dr.Abdul Ahad Guroo in 1993 was revealed through his book “My Kashmir Conflict and the Prospects of Enduring Peace”(page 81-82).But one wonders whether he has fully come out of deep slumber or is it like a lucid interval for an insane person as in a recent TV programme it was shocking to hear his bizarre explanation of unidentified mass graves being unmarked because of persons of Wahabi sect buried therein which does not permit the names of dead to be inscribed on graves.

All Tyranny & barbarism needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent. This is what Kashmir is witnessing today. The long struggle of Kashmiris against occupational violence is an everyday reality in the valley. Violence has served as a tool to affirm power and increasingly, women have become a medium through which the armed forces assert their authority and inflict human rights abuses. Rape in Kashmir is not merely a matter of chance nor is it a question of sex. It is also not a casual act by some erring soldier. It is rather a question of power and control which is `structured by male soldiers’ notions of their masculine privilege. Being cheaper, more destructive and easier to get away with than other methods of warfare, it has assumed an instrument of State policy to punish, intimidate, coerce, humiliate and degrade the local population with the sole purpose of forcing them into submission. Dr Maiti, a professor of political science at Rurdwa University, West Bengal, explains, “Rape continues to be a major instrument of Indian oppression against the Kashmiri people while the majority of victims are civilians. This concept stands fortified by a report of International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) dated March 6, 2001, which mentions that women are raped in order to humiliate, frighten and defeat the enemy ‘group’ to which they belong. While addressing a seminar at the UN in Geneva, entitled, “Defending the Democratic Processes”, British parliamentarian, George Galloway, has also confirmed that India is using rape as a weapon of occupation in Kashmir.

A study done by “Doctors without Borders” reveals that Kashmiri women are among the worst sufferers of sexual violence in the world. It further mentions that since the beginning of the armed struggle in Kashmir in 1989, sexual violence has been routinely perpetrated on Kashmiri women. With victims numbering around ten thousand, Kashmir has surpassed the figures of Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka and Chechnya. A media portal of UK maintains that non-governmental organizations hardly took interest in documenting the plight of these silent sufferers of Jammu and Kashmir. This serves as a telling comment on the plight of women and on the indifferent attitude of the state towards addressing the issue. This has even been admitted by UN Special Representative Margot Wallstrom when she said recently . “It has become such a way of life in some conflict zones like Kashmir that many victims are simply too afraid to report it and you can understand that,” And even in those cases, where the victims manage to transcend these fears and report the matter to police, they achieve little or no justice because of the legal immunity provided to the erring soldiers.

With no remedy available at the national level, the rapes in Kashmir become eligible for an appropriate response at the international level. The state has to be held accountable for breach of its obligations under various relevant treaties and customary international law. The prosecution of individuals alleged to have committed rape should be done by the international criminal tribunal on the precedent of Nuremberg as the domestic courts and military court-martials have failed to deliver justice in these matters and are motivated by a state centric approach. The focus of the tribunal should be to punish the wrongdoers and not on providing compensation and support to the victim. If the international community remains a mute spectator to the war crimes in Kashmir, the people will loose trust in international law because of the strong developing perception that it applies only to the poor and weak and not to the strong and powerful? If you want global security, there are a lot of things to do, but the first thing is to have values or standards that are equal and fair.

The author is a practicing chartered Accountant. Feed back at amzargar1@indiatimes.com

 

kashmir

DILLI CHALO: was a call given out by women organisations participating in a big convention at Srinagar on Peace and Justice for Kashmiri women impacted so terribly by conflict, on October 30.
On December 10, International Human Rights Day, women organisations in Delhi are organising a Public Meeting at Jantar Mantar from 11a.m. Kashmiri Women suffering from the decades old conflict will be travelling to Delhi for the meeting

Members of Parliament, activists and others will also participate.

Do spare the time to stand in solidarity with the women of Kashmir.
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Following were resolutions adopted in Srinagar on October 30:

1) Demilitarisation;

2) Withdrawal of AFSPA, PSA and all other draconian laws;

3) Immediate trial and punishment of security personnel and all others
accused of rape and molestation,

4) Release of political prisoners,

5) Rehabilitation of widows and half widows that must include employment,

6) Compilation of data of missing persons, and a time-bound
investigation into the cases,

7) Appointment of a Commission of Inquiry under an impartial judge and
experts into the present condition of women in Jammu and Kashmir;

8) Setting up hospitals for women to treat both physical and mental
ailments in Srinagar and other towns in Jammu and Kashmir;

9) Resettlement of Pandits;

10) Fast track courts; and

11) A Dilli Chalo march to Jantar Mantar on December 10, 2012.

So lets stand together on the International Human Rights Day.
Regards,
Bula

Bula Devi

Web Editor

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