In occupied Kashmir, the resilience of the people in Kashmir and their constant struggles for years deserve salutations, said Kashmir Times Executive Editor Anuradha Bhasin Jamwal.
Bhasin said this while addressing Pandit Raghunath Vaishnavi Annual Lecture, which was organized a human rights group, Jammu Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society. This year’s lecture was themed “Many Shades of Kashmir Resistance: Reflections on Emerging Trends in the Political Theatre and the Agency of Peoples’ Struggles”.
“There are many shades and forms of resistance in Kashmir,” Bhasin said, adding that the space for peaceful resistance in Kashmir has shrunk, forcing youth to pick up guns.
According to Bhasin, before last year’s uprising, Kashmir was already a simmering volcano beneath the occasional calm, waiting to erupt”.
“Burhan Wani’s death in 2016 provided that tipping point that many of us had been dreading for more than a decade. The 2016 uprising was different from the agitations of previous years which were built around the narratives of oppression and call for justice. This was an open rebellion that reflected not just pent up anger but also the desperation of the situation,” Bhasin said. She said it is difficult to understand and describe the phenomenon that unfolded in 2016 and continues still. “But not difficult to understand why it happened.”
“Burhan Wani was seen by youth as both a symbol of oppression and defiance against it. Since then the situation of desperation has only deepened with young boys, sometimes also girls, ready to fight the mighty and powerfully equipped forces with bare hands or stone. Some pick up the gun,” Bhasin said.
She said, “There is no dearth of passion driving youth towards militancy but there is dearth of funding and availability of arms. And this increases their vulnerability. They know they are no match for the powerful state but still are ready to die and die too easily.—KMS