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Kashmir Watch

There’s a cautionary tale of a mother who repeatedly had to prevent her small child from putting his hand in the fire to see what it felt like.


Recently, two Kashmiri men were assaulted. One man was tied to an army jeep and paraded about villages, labelled — via a placard — a stone-pelter. The other man lost his life


In Nov-Dec 2014 India and its friends celebrated the unprecedented voter turnout in the Jammu and Kashmir assembly elections. 65 percent overall voter turnout in freezing temperatures, even as people were struggling to recover from the devastation caused by the terrible floods of Sep 2014. This was the victory of democracy, won over all attempts to boycott, disrupt and delay.


He gave furtive glances as he walked in and shook hands with me. I asked if he was okay as he seemed a bit uneasy. “I am fine, but I have to be cautious,” he replied as he stressed upon the word ‘cautious’.


Giving rise to a series of mass protests and anti-India public demonstrations in the disputed Himalayan state of Kashmir, the martyrdom of young Kashmiri ‘poster boy’ Burhan Wani infused a new spirit into the Kashmir freedom movement.


Major Nitin Gogoi faded from the limelight after the army and the Advocate General justified his action of taking Farooq Dar as a supposed ‘human shield’ to save lives of election officials and some policemen on 9 April.


A little improvisation on a Noam Chomsky quote explains best Kashmir’s diametrically held images in the Valley and in mainland India: The general population doesn’t know the problem and it doesn’t even know that it doesn’t know.


The killing of Sabzar Bhat, a Kashmiri militant, in an encounter with counter-insurgency operatives is bound to aggravate the tumult in the Valley.


When Major Leetul Gogoi tied the alleged stone pelter, Farooq Ahmed Dar, on the bonnet of his jeep and raced through a hostile stone pelting mob with his Quick Reaction Team (QRT) with the polling staff he had come to rescue in tow, he created history of sorts.


Over the weekend, Tral came back in news again. This time for the elimination of Sabzaar Bhatt. The so called replacement of Burhan Wani, Hizbul Mujahideen leader from Tral.


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Those with a resolve make a big difference to the society. They inspire others to make the best out of a bad situation, steer out of morass with fortitude. Insha Mushtaq, the teenage girl who was pelleted to complete blindness during 2016 emerged as a classic example of courage.
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Title: The People Next Door -The Curious History of India-Pakistan Relations; Author: T.C.A. Raghavan; Publisher: HarperCollins ; Pages: 361; Price: Rs 699


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Interview with Hudson Institute’s Aparna Pande, whose book From Chanakya to Modi: Evolution of India’s Foreign Policy, was released on June 17.