Srinagar, May 02 (KMS): In occupied Kashmir, senior journalist and political commentator, Gowhar Geelani, has said that India wants to establish the peace of a graveyard in the territory by silencing indigenous voices and demonstrating a false sense of normalcy.

Gowhar Geelani, who was recently booked by Indian police for his writings and posts on social media, in an interview said that the silencing of journalists would not be limited to Kashmir but would spread across India. He said that the authoritarian mindset could not act democratically and would use the instrument of the state to muzzle opinions and the press in India also.

He said the larger aim seems to silence the articulate civil voices in Kashmir. “It is not an attack on me or any other journalist, it is an assault on the institution of journalism and civility,” he maintained.

Gowhar Geelani said that the Indian government was bringing a new domicile law making provisions for outsiders to settle in occupied Kashmir, changing names of places and attempting delimitation of legislative constituencies that would change the political centrality of Kashmir.

He said the people of Kashmir have not accepted the changes that New Delhi brought in. “How long will you suppress the voice of the people through troops on the ground? There is anger. The moment there is some space available, people will react. It is the lull before the storm,” he said.

Gowhar Geelani maintained that such acts show nervousness on the part of Indian authorities which took away the special status of Kashmir, and despite all the harsh measures could not restore normalcy in the territory. He added that there was a larger design in pursuing such political agenda when the world was preoccupied with containing the danger of the coronavirus pandemic.

It is to mention here that the Indian authorities have registered cases against Kashmiri journalists, Gowhar Geelani, Peerzada Ashiq and Masarrat Zahra under serious charges. They were booked for their news stories, social media posts and uploading some Kashmir-related photographs.

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