India failed to show normalcy

Srinagar, August 20 (KMS): In occupied Kashmir, people defying curfew and other restrictions took to the streets in Srinagar and other parts of the territory to protest against the Indian occupation and revoking of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir by the Indian government.

Groups of youth came out of their houses in Srinagar and elsewhere and staged anti-India protests. Indian troops fired bullets, pellets and teargas shells injuring scores of protesters. At least, eight people with pellet injuries were admitted to hospitals in Srinagar. An official confirmed that at least two dozen stone pelting incidents took place in different areas of the Kashmir valley.

Meanwhile, curfew and other restrictions continued for the 16th consecutive day, today, in the Kashmir valley and five districts of Jammu region aggravating the plight of the besieged population. All TV channels, landline and cellular phones and internet services are snapped cutting the links of Kashmir with the rest of the world since Narendra Modi government scrapped the special status of Jammu and Kashmir on 5th August. Markets and shops are closed while transport is off the roads since then. Local journalists complain that Indian forces do not allow them to perform their professional duties.

The Indian government’s desperate bid to reopen nearly 200 primary schools in selected areas to show manufactured normalcy met with fiasco as parents refused to risk the lives of their children. The youth told media men that they have realised that it is do-or-die time for them and they have decided to continue the protests. People said in absence of all modern communication means, the residents have found other ways to organize themselves. When they spot troops trying to enter their locality, they rush to a mosque and sound the alarm by playing a devotional song calling for people to stand against illegal occupation or by issuing an alert over the loudspeakers.

Almost all Kashmiri political leaders including Syed Ali Gilani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and three former puppet chief ministers Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti continue to remain under house arrest or in jails. Besides, thousands of political leaders and workers have been detained under draconian law, Public Safety Act, over the past two weeks.

Indian Nobel laureate Dr Amartya Sen in an interview in New Delhi vehemently criticised the Indian government’s move on Kashmir saying as an Indian he is not proud as India has lost the reputation of being a democratic country after what it did in Kashmir. Dr Amartya Sen, who is an economist and philosopher, said that the Indian government’s action in Kashmir is at par with the British colonial era.

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