Another ‘Aberration’

Yet again the forces supposed to uphold and restore peace have breached it, this time at Zainakote on the outskirts of Srinagar.  The aberration (an expression highly favoured by be-medaled generals) occurred when seven civilians were killed in a collision between an army truck and a private taxi. Public protests that followed were showered with […]

BJP’s Budget

In its first union budget, the BJP-led NDA government has allocated more than Rs 1000 crore for Jammu and ‘Kashmir.  Of that, Rs 500 crore have been earmarked for the rehabilitation of the Pandits who had migrated to various parts of India and Jammu post-1990. Another Rs 500 crore have been kept to develop a […]

Deadly Probes

What amounts to ‘substantial progress’ in a 12-year-old case of custodial death is that investigators are yet to determine whether the victim met with an accident or died under torture. Were it not for the alarming incidence of such tragedies over the past two-and-a-half decades, the investigation could have been hailed as a landmark in […]

Revisit 1990

Civil society in Kashmir has rightly opposed `protected enclaves’ for Kashmiri Pandits.  At an inter-community dialogue on Saturday, civil society also called for a probe by an international commission to ascertain the reasons for the community’s exodus and also the reasons for Kashmiri youth taking up arms. Revisiting 1990 is important to know what has been […]

Misappropriating Martyrs

  In a glorious tribute to Kashmir and its sacrifices, the rulers of the day have already announced “restrictions” for most of Old Srinagar where, near the hospice of a revered saint, lie interred the martyrs of July 13, 1931, a day all Kashmiris, of whatever political persuasions, regard as the beginning of their struggle […]

Prisoners’ Woes

Even after outrage over last year’s deplorable stripping incident, nothing has changed in the state’s various prisons, including the Central Jail in Srinagar. The detainees, and their relatives who visit them, continue to suffer on one count or the other.  The High Court has repeatedly directed authorities to implement the jail manual in letter and […]

People’s (Un)democratic Party

After the recent Parliamentary polls, the People’s Democratic Party emerged as a formidable pro-India party that could challenge the family rule of the Abdullahs in the Valley. The way this party drubbed all three candidates of National Conference in all constituencies of Kashmir region came as a shocker to many political pundits. The swift rise […]

Long Live State Security

By disallowing purely an academic event, authorities on Wednesday proved yet again that Jammu and Kashmir is a police state. Noted writer Mridu Rai was scheduled to deliver a lecture in honour of the great Kashmiri freedom fighter, Raghunath Vaishnavi, at a Srinagar hotel, and had traveled all the way from Calcutta to keep her appointment, only […]

Duty and Ramadan

One can’t grudge a family man or woman his or her desire to be home with kids for iftaar after a hard day at work. This applies as much to professionals like doctors, teachers and lawyers (journalists being a breed apart), as to those generally known as the working classes, and the business community. With […]

Sights of Suffering

The disturbing other side of Kashmir’s showcased prosperity becomes evident rather sharply in the month of Ramadan when the devout are enjoined to take particular care of their responsibilities towards the underprivileged and the needy. But even otherwise, sights and signs of suffering and want abound, particularly in Srinagar, where many from outlying districts, particularly […]