Kashmir

Articles of interest:

Asia Times on the growing protest movement in Kashmir:

Those out on the streets today belong to a generation born during the militancy. All they have seen is violence by state and non-state actors. The face of India they have seen in Kashmir is that of its coercive apparatus. It is true that they have also seen a bit of democracy – when politicians make grand promises during elections. But democracy has brought them no jobs, no security, and no future. That frustration is exploding on the streets in such circumstances is not surprising.

Dawn on the decision of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference to call for mass protests this week:

A rigid curfew was lifted from most of Kashmir on Sunday, but shops and businesses remained shut after separatists called for a strike to protest Indian rule in the Himalayan region.

Curfew-like restrictions were imposed in some areas of Srinagar, the main city in Indian-administered Kashmir, and in two southern towns following clashes late Saturday between anti-India protesters and government forces, a police officer said Sunday, speaking on condition of anonymity as he was not authorized to speak to the media.

(This at least forces the question of how dominant a player the APHC is in the new protests which seem to be dominated by young, unaffiliated men).

The new line from the Indian state about Kashmir seems to have shifted.  The first several weeks were dominated by the claim that Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Muhammad were behind the protests (this was the Chidambaram position, backed up by a ridiculous phone call which is supposed to prove the connection to Pakistan).  The new argument is that this is a failure of Omar Abdullah’s government to provide economic stability (devolution in this respect is also part of the blame game).

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