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Kashmiri Pandits Genocide And It's Top 13 Interesting Facts- 13angle.com

Kashmiri Pandits Genocide

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Introduction of Kashmiri Pandits Genocide- 13angle.com

Introduction

  • Kashmir’s history is intertwined with that of the Indian subcontinent as a whole, as well as the surrounding regions of Central Asia, South Asia, and East Asia. In the past, Kashmir was used to refer to the Kashmir Valley. Today, it refers to the Indian-administered union territories of Jammu and Kashmir (which includes Jammu and the Kashmir Valley) and Ladakh, as well as the Pakistan-administered territories of Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan, and the Chinese-administered regions of Aksai Chin and the Trans-Karakoram Tract. The Kashmir valley became an important center of Hinduism and then Buddhism in the first millennium, and later in the ninth century, Shaivism developed.

  • Islamization in Kashmir occurred during the 13th and 15th centuries, resulting in the fall of Kashmir Shaivism. Handicrafts like carpet weaving, papier mache, silk manufacture and processing, and other handicrafts offered up new economic prospects for Muslims. Shah Mir, the first Muslim monarch of Kashmir, established the Shah Mir dynasty in 1339. Muslim rulers controlled Kashmir for the following five centuries, including the Mughal Empire, which lasted from 1586 to 1751, and the Afghan Durrani Empire, which ruled from 1747 to 1819. Under Ranjit Singh’s leadership, the Sikhs captured Kashmir that year.

  • The Treaty of Lahore was signed in 1846 following the Sikh loss in the First Anglo-Sikh War, and after the province was purchased from the British through the Treaty of Amritsar, the Raja of Jammu, Gulab Singh, became the new ruler of Kashmir. His successors ruled the former princely state under the British Crown’s paramountcy (or tutelage) until 1947, when it became a disputed area managed by three countries: India, Pakistan, and the People’s Republic of China.

  • Kashmir’s tragedy has deep origins. Scholarly works and journalistic exercises have gone deep to uncover and investigate the decades of repeated cycles of bloodshed, waves of secession, the entrance of Pakistan-funded terror organizations, and the seething anger among the people.

  • Kashmiri Pandits (also known as Kashmiri Brahmins) are a population of Kashmiri Hindus who are members of India’s Saraswat Brahmin caste. They are members of the PanchaGauda Brahmin community from the Kashmir Valley, a hilly region of India’s Jammu and Kashmir union state. Before Muslim influence arrived in the Kashmir Valley, substantial numbers of Kashmiri Pandits converted to Islam. Large numbers left in the 1990s exodus, prompted by the rise of Islamic militancy in the valley. Despite this, just a limited number of them survive, and they are the sole Hindu group native to Kashmir Valley. The in masse movement, or large-scale flight, of Kashmiri Hindus, often known as “Kashmiri Pandits,” from the mostly Muslim Kashmir Valley in Indian-administered Kashmir in the aftermath of a largely political separatist rebellion in the early months of 1990 is known as the Kashmiri Exodus. A total of 90,000–100,000 Pandits out of a population of 120,000–140,000 felt driven to flee, and 30–80 people were killed in the process. The killings of certain high-profile officials among Kashmiri Pandits sparked dread and panic among many Kashmiri Pandits, and the rumors and uncertainty that followed may have been the latent reasons for the migration. Some Hindu nationalist publications and some displaced Pandits’ fears that the violence was “genocide” or “ethnic cleansing” are regarded to be inaccurate.

  • Scholars citing the Indian government or Kashmiri Pandit organizations have estimated that 228 Hindu civilians were killed in the Kashmir valley during the four-year period 1988–1991, and 650 during the 20-year period following 1990, with many of those killed suspected by militants to be Indian intelligence agents. Since roughly the same time, India has ruled the Kashmir Valley, which is part of the wider Kashmir area that has been the subject of a conflict between India and Pakistan since 1947.

  • Scholars citing the Indian government or Kashmiri Pandit organisations have estimated that 228 Hindu civilians were killed in the Kashmir valley during the four-year period 1988–1991, and 650 during the 20-year period following 1990, with many of those killed suspected by militants to be Indian intelligence agents. Since roughly the same time, India has ruled the Kashmir Valley, which is part of the wider Kashmir area that has been the subject of a conflict between India and Pakistan since 1947.

  • In Kashmir, a long-running insurgency began in 1989. Kashmiri’s resentment of India’s federal government was fueled by allegations that it rigged an assembly election in 1987 and abandoned a promise of greater autonomy. The discontent erupted into an ill-defined rebellion against the Indian government. The Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF), which had political rather than religious goals at the time, led the revolt but could not avoid violence. The great majority of Kashmiri Hindus departed the valley in a mass exodus in the early 1990s. Several academics estimate that in February–March 1990, roughly 90,000–100,000 Pandits out of a population of 120,000–140,000 departed in a matter of weeks. Other academics have put the number of those who died in the evacuation at around 150,000.

  • In the years that followed, more of them left, until only about 3,000 families remained in 2011. The motivations for this migration are hotly debated. As Kashmiri Muslims’ aspirations for independence from India grew louder in 1989–1990, many Kashmiri Pandits, who saw self-determination as anti-national, felt under pressure. Political violence, particularly the assassinations of a number of Pandit officials in the 1990s, may have shattered the community’s sense of security, though it is thought that some Pandits may have served as agents of the Indian state, based on evidence produced afterwards in Indian courts. The Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) killed a number of high-profile Pandits in targeted killings.

  • Anti-Hindu cries were occasionally broadcast over mosque loudspeakers, urging Pandits to leave the region. The news of threatening letters spread alarm, yet further interviews revealed that the messages were only received infrequently. There were inconsistencies in the reports of the two communities, Muslims and Pandits. Many Kashmiri Pandits thought they were driven out of the Valley by Pakistan and the militants it backed, or by Kashmiri Muslims collectively. Many Muslims in the Valley believed that the then-Governor, Jagmohan, had pushed the Pandits to leave so that he could pursue Muslim retaliation more aggressively.

  • Several scholars attribute the movement to genuine panic among the Pandits, which resulted as much from religious zeal among some of the insurgents as it did from the Governor’s lack of pledges for the Pandits’ protection. Right-wing Hindu organisations in India rapidly championed the Pandits’ cause, preying on their fears and further alienating them from Kashmiri Muslims. Many Kashmiri Muslims opposed violence against religious minorities, and the departure of the Kashmiri Pandits provided an excuse for portraying Kashmiri Muslims as Islamic radicals, tainting their more legitimate political grievances and justifying the Indian state’s surveillance and violent treatment of them.

  • Some displaced Kashmiri Pandits have created the Panun Kashmir (“Our Own Kashmir”) movement, which has advocated for a separate homeland for Kashmiri Hindus in the Valley but opposes autonomy for Kashmir on the grounds that it would encourage the development of an Islamic state. One of the primary aspects of the ruling Bhartiya Janata Party’s electoral agenda is the return to Kashmir’s homeland. Because they have not crossed an international boundary, Kashmiri Pandits are not called “refugees.” Many want to be classified as Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), but the Indian government has refused to grant them such status, citing concerns over international participation in Kashmir, which it regards to be its internal matter. Kashmiri Pandits are considered ‘migrants’ by the Indian government.

  • Few Pandits expected their exile to extend more than a few months at the time of their flight. Pandits from Kashmir first settled in the Jammu Division, the bottom half of what is now India’s union territory of Jammu and Kashmir, where they lived in refugee camps, sometimes in filthy conditions. Many displaced Pandits from the urban elite were able to find work in other parts of India as the exile lasted longer, but those from the lower middle class, particularly those from rural areas, languished longer in refugee camps, with some living in poverty; this created tensions with the host communities—whose social and religious practises, while Hindu, differed from those of the brahmin Pandits—and made assimilation more difficult.In the camps, many displaced Pandits suffered from emotional despair and a sense of hopelessness. Exiled Kashmiri Pandits have also authored autobiographical memoirs, novels, and poetry to document and comprehend their experiences. Exodus Day is honoured by Kashmiri Hindu groups on January 19.

Background

Background of Kashmiri Pandits Genocide- 13angle.com
  • Sheikh Abdullah agreed to actions made by the federal government in Jammu and Kashmir to integrate the state into India under the 1975 Indira–Sheikh Accord. It was met with hatred among the people of Kashmir, according to Farrukh Faheem, a sociologist at the University of Kashmir, and laid the groundwork for future rebellion. Jamaat-e-Islami Kashmir, the People’s League in Indian Jammu and Kashmir, and the Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) located in Pakistan-administered Azad Jammu and Kashmir were among those who rejected the accords. Communalist language has been used in the state for vote bank politics since the mid-1970s. Around this time, Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) attempted to spread Wahhabism in place of Sufism in order to foster religious unity in the country, and communication aided them in their efforts. In the 1980s, Sheikh Abdullah’s government began Islamizing Kashmir by changing the names of roughly 300 locations to Islamic ones. Sheikh also began giving communal lectures at mosques, which were reminiscent of his aggressive pro-independence speeches from the 1930s. He also referred to the Kashmiri Hindus as mukhbir (Hindustani:,), or Indian military informants. Until the late 1980s, the ISI’s attempts to create mass unrest in Kashmir against the Indian authority were mainly ineffective. The armed struggle of the Afghan mujahideen, supported by the United States and Pakistan, against the Soviet Union during the Soviet-Afghan War, the Islamic Revolution in Iran, and the Sikh insurgency in Indian Punjab against the Indian government became sources of inspiration for a large number of Kashmiri Muslim youth. Both the pro-independence JKLF and pro-Pakistan Islamist groups, such as Jamaat-e-Islami Kashmir, mobilised the fast-developing anti-Indian sentiments among the Kashmiri community; terrorist activity in Kashmir increased dramatically in 1984.

  • After the murder of JKLF fighter Maqbool Bhat in February 1984, Kashmiri nationalists staged strikes and protests in the region, when significant numbers of Kashmiri youth took part in broad anti-India rallies and were met with harsh retaliation by state security forces. Farooq Abdullah, the country’s then-chief minister, was accused of losing control of the situation by his critics. During this time, his journey to Pakistani-administered Kashmir was an embarrassment, as he shared a platform with the JKLF, according to Hashim Qureshi. Although few people believed him, Abdullah said that he travelled on behalf of Indira Gandhi and his father to “hear firsthand” the views there. He was also accused of allowing Khalistani terrorists to train in Jammu, although these charges were never proven. He was also accused of allowing Khalistani militants to train in Jammu, although these claims were never shown to be genuine. After Abdullah was fired in a “political coup,” Ghulam Mohammad Shah, who had the support of Indira Gandhi, succeeded his brother-in-law Farooq Abdullah and seized the job of the chief minister. G. M. Shah’s administration, which lacked popular support, resorted to Islamists and anti-Indian figures such as Molvi Iftikhar Hussain Ansari, Mohammad Shafi Qureshi, and MohinuddinSalati to acquire legitimacy via religious emotions. This provided political room to Islamists, who had previously been defeated heavily in state elections in 1983. In 1986, Shah planned to build a mosque on the grounds of a historic Hindu temple in Jammu’s New Civil Secretariat area, which would be used for ‘Namaz’ by Muslim workers. Jammu residents flocked to the streets to protest the decision, resulting in a Hindu-Muslim confrontation. On his return to Kashmir valley in February 1986, Shah responded and incited Kashmiri Muslims by declaring Islam Khatre Mein Hey (Islam is in peril). As a result, the 1986 Kashmir riots broke out, in which Kashmiri Hindus were attacked by Kashmiri Muslims. Many incidences of Kashmiri Hindus being slain and their houses and temples being harmed or destroyed have been recorded in various places. South Kashmir and Sopore were the most impacted areas. Muslim rioters pillaged or destroyed Hindu temples and properties at Vanpoh, Lukbhavan, Anantnag, Salar, and Fatehpur. Despite the fact that no Hindus were murdered during the Anantnag violence in February 1986, several Hindu homes and other properties were looted, burned, or destroyed. An inquiry into the Anantnag riots found that members of the state’s’ secular parties,’ not Islamists, had played a crucial role in orchestrating the violence in order to gain political mileage by exploiting religious sensitivities. Shah dispatched the army to quell the uprising, but it had little effect. Following sectarian violence in south Kashmir, his government was sacked on March 12, 1986, by then-Governor Jagmohan. As a result, Jagmohan became the only ruler of the state. As a result, the political struggle was framed as a battle between “Hindu” New Delhi (the Central Government) and its attempts to impose its will on the state, and “Muslim” Kashmir, as represented by political Islamists and clerics. The Islamists had organised under the Muslim United Front banner, with a programme calling for Islamic unity and opposition to central government intrusion, and ran in the 1987 state elections, which they lost again. The 1987 elections, on the other hand, are widely thought to have been manipulated in order to enable the secular parties (NC and INC) in Kashmir to gain power. The insurgency was sparked by corruption and suspected electoral malpractices.

  • Anyone who publicly supported pro-India policies was slain by Kashmiri terrorists. Kashmiri Hindus were singled out because of their faith, which was perceived as displaying an Indian presence in Kashmir. Despite the fact that the insurgency was started by the JKLF, groups arose over the next few months advocating for the establishment of Nizam-e-Mustafa (Sharia-based administration). Islamist groups declared the Islamicization of the socio-political and economic structures, merger with Pakistan, unification of the ummah, and establishment of an Islamic Caliphate. To clear the valley of non-Islamic forces, the liquidation of central government officials, Hindus, liberal and nationalist academics, and social and cultural activists was stated as vital. [85] [86] The semi-secular and Islamist organisations’ relationships were often strained and frequently antagonistic. The JKLF had also used Islamic concepts in its mobilisation techniques and public discourse, interchangeably utilising the terms Islam and independence. It wanted equal rights for all, but with an Islamic twist, since it aspired to build an Islamic democracy, minority rights protection based on the Quran and Sunnah, and an Islamic socialist economy. Pro-separatist political activities strayed from their claimed secular viewpoint on occasion.

Insurgency Activity

  • The Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) started a separatist struggle for Kashmir’s independence from India in July 1988. [90] On 14 September 1989, the gang assassinated Tika Lal Taploo, a lawyer and a major leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party in Jammu and Kashmir, in front of multiple eyewitnesses for the first time. The Kashmiri Hindus were terrified, especially because Taploo’s killers were never apprehended, emboldening the terrorists. The Hindus felt unsafe in the valley and that they may be attacked at any time. The assassinations of numerous famous Hindus in Kashmir. Minister of Home Affairs Mufti Mohammad Sayeed persuaded Prime Minister V.P. Singh to nominate Jagmohan as the state’s governor in order to defeat his political adversary Farooq Abdullah, who was then the Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir. Abdullah was enraged by Jagmohan, who had also been appointed governor in April 1984 and had advocated Abdullah’s dismissal to Rajiv Gandhi in July 1984.

  • Abdullah has already stated that if Jagmohan was appointed Governor, he would quit. However, on January 19, 1990, the Central Government named him Governor. As a result, Abdullah resigned on the same day, and Jagmohan requested that the State Assembly be dissolved. The majority of Kashmiri Hindus evacuated the valley and relocated to other areas of India, mainly to refugee camps in the state’s Jammu region.

Attack And Threats

Attack and threats of Kashmiri Genocide- 13angle.com
  • Tika Lal Taploo, a lawyer and BJP member, was assassinated by the JKLF at his Srinagar residence on September 14, 1989. NilkanthGanjoo, a Srinagar High Court judge who had condemned Maqbul Bhat to death, was shot and killed shortly after Taploo’s execution. Neelkanth Ganjoo, a high court judge of Kashmir, was assassinated near the High Court in Srinagar on November 4, 1989. JKLF members abducted Dr.Rubaiya Sayeed, daughter of then-Union Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, in December 1989, and demanded the release of five militants, which they got. On January 4, 1990, the Srinagar-based journal Aftab published a statement demanding all Hindus in Kashmir to leave immediately, citing the terrorist group Hizbul Mujahideen as its source.

  • Another Srinagar-based publication, Al-Safa, reprinted the identical warning on April 14, 1990. The publication then clarified that it did not make the comment and did not claim ownership of it. Posters were hung on the walls warning all Kashmiris to carefully obey Islamic norms, which included adhering to the Islamic dress code, prohibiting alcohol, movies, and video parlors, and placing stringent limitations on women. Unknown masked guys with Kalashnikovs forcibly reset people’s clocks to Pakistan Standard Time. As a symbol of Islamic control, office buildings, businesses, and institutions were painted green. Kashmiri Hindus’ shops, industries, temples, and residences were all set on fire or destroyed.

  • Hindus’ doors were defaced with threatening signs urging them to leave Kashmir immediately. The Kashmir Valley had a blackout on the 18th and 19th of January, with the electricity turned off everywhere except mosques[citation needed], which aired divisive and incendiary slogans calling for the purging of Kashmiri Hindus. The Gawkadal massacre occurred in Srinagar on January 21, 1990, two days after Jagmohan took over as governor, in which Indian security forces opened fire on demonstrators, killing at least 50 people and maybe over 100. Chaos ensued as a result of these occurrences. Lawlessness swept the valley, and a multitude armed with slogans and firearms began wandering the streets.

  • News of violent episodes continued to arrive, and many Hindus who made it through the night saved their lives by fleeing the valley. The Rawalpora shooting incident occurred on January 25, 1990, when four Indian Air Force personnel, Squadron Leader Ravi Khanna, Corporal D.B. Singh, Corporal Uday Shankar, and Airman Azad Ahmad, were killed and ten others were injured while waiting for their vehicle to pick them up in the morning at the Rawalpora bus stand. The terrorists fired roughly 40 shots in all, reportedly from two to three automatic guns and one semi-automatic handgun. The adjoining Jammu and Kashmir Armed Police post, which included seven armed constables and one head constable, remained unresponsive.

  • Terrorists had such a stranglehold on power. The executions were purportedly carried out by the Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF), led by Yasin Malik. Incidents like this accelerated the Hindu migration from Kashmir. Sarwan and Kaul Premi, a famous Kashmiri poet, were assassinated on April 29, 1990. Over the month of January, many intelligence personnel was killed. Satish Tikoo, a young Hindu social worker, was assassinated near his home in HabbaKadal, Srinagar, on February 2, 1990. Lassa Kaul, the Station Director of Srinagar Doordarshan, was assassinated on February 13, 1990.

  • GirijaTickoo, a Kashmiri Hindu teacher, was gang-raped by terrorists on June 4, 1990, while she was still alive, ripping her abdomen and chopping her corpse into two parts with a saw machine. Hriday Nath Wanchoo, a trade union leader and human rights campaigner, was assassinated in December 1992, and Kashmir separatist Ashiq Hussain Faktoo was found guilty. During the migration, several Kashmiri Pandit women were kidnapped, raped, and murdered.

Aftermath

Aftermath of Kashmiri Genocide- 13angle.com
  • In reaction to the departure, the Panun Kashmir organization was founded. The Margdarshan Resolution, adopted in late 1991, highlighted the necessity for a distinct Union Territory in the Kashmir division, Panun Kashmir. Panun Kashmir will be a home for Kashmiri Hindus and a location for displaced Kashmiri Pandits to relocate. Following the migration, militancy in Kashmir has escalated. Following the departure, terrorists targeted the properties of Kashmiri Hindus. In 2009, the Oregon Legislative Assembly approved a resolution declaring September 14, 2007, Martyrs Day, to commemorate the ethnic cleansing and terror campaigns perpetrated by terrorists aiming to create an Islamic state in Jammu and Kashmir against non-Muslim minorities. Hindus in Kashmir are still fighting for their right to return to the valley, and many of them live as refugees. After the situation improved, the exiled community intended to return. The majority have not done so since the situation in the Valley is still dangerous, and they are afraid of being killed. After their departure, the majority of them lost their homes, and many are unable to sell them. Their position as displaced persons has damaged them in the educational arena. Many Hindu households were unable to send their children to prestigious public schools.

  • Furthermore, many Hindus endured institutional prejudice from state administrators who were mostly Muslim. It became more difficult for Hindu children to acquire education as a result of the poor ad hoc schools and institutions established in refugee camps. They also struggled in further education, since they were unable to gain entrance to Jammu University’s postgraduate courses, and getting into Kashmir Valley institutes was impossible. The Indian government has taken up the problem of displaced Kashmiri kids’ education, assisting them in gaining admission to different KendriyaVidyalayas and major educational institutions and universities across the nation.

  • In 2010, the Government of Jammu and Kashmir reported that 808 Hindu households with a total population of 3,445 individuals remained in the Valley, despite financial and other incentives put in place to entice others to return. According to a government study from Jammu and Kashmir, 219 Hindus out of a total of 1400 were slain in the region between 1989 and 2004, but none after that. After conducting a survey in 2008 and 2009, the Kashmir Pandit Sangharsh Samiti (KPSS) reported that 399 Kashmiri Hindus were killed by insurgents from 1990 to 2011, with 75 percent of them killed in the first year of the Kashmiri insurgency, and that about 650 Hindus have been killed in the valley over the last 20 years. In 1990, according to the Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti, 357 Hindus were slain in Kashmir. Panun Kashmir, a political organization that represents Hindus who have fled Kashmir, has compiled a list of 1,341 Hindus who have been slain since 1990. In 2017, the Roots of Kashmir petitioned the Supreme Court of India to reopen 215 cases involving more than 700 alleged deaths of Kashmiri Hindus, but the motion was denied. They’ve also called for the establishment of a “special crimes tribunal” to investigate ethnic cleansing and other crimes. They also sought a one-time payment for displaced Hindus in Kashmir who are unable to seek government employment.

Recent Developments

  • The Indian government has attempted to rehabilitate Hindus, and separatists have also extended an invitation to Hindus to return to Kashmir. The Kashmiri Hindus were fully protected by Tahir, the commander of a separatist Islamist outfit. In a play named ‘Kaash Kashmir,’ the government’s indifference and the hardships of Kashmiri Hindus are portrayed. As journalist Rahul Pandita writes in his memoir, such initiatives or assertions have lacked political will.

  • Some see the now-abrogated Article 370 as a hurdle to Kashmiri Hindu resettlement because the state’s constitution prohibits persons residing in India outside of Jammu and Kashmir from freely settling in the state and becoming citizens. According to Sanjay Tickoo, head of the Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti (KPSS), the ‘Article 370’ matter is distinct from the issue of Kashmiri Hindu migration, and both should be addressed individually. He thinks it’s an “utterly inappropriate approach to deal with a highly sensitive and emotive matter” to link the two incidents.

  • Since the UPA government announced an Rs. 1,168-crore incentive in 2008, a total of 1,800 Kashmiri Hindu youngsters have returned to the Valley. R.K. Bhat, head of the Youth All India Kashmiri Samaj, called the package a “sham” and said that the majority of the youths were living in tiny prefabricated shelters or leased housing. He further claimed that 4,000 posts have been unfilled since 2010, accusing the BJP administration of repeating the same rhetoric and not being sincere about assisting them. Farooq Abdullah sparked outrage when he said in an interview with NDTV on January 19 that the onus was on Kashmiri Hindus to return on their own, and that no one would urge them to do so. Kashmiri Hindu writers Neeru Kaul and Siddhartha Gigoo, Congress MP Shashi Tharoor, and Lt. General Syed Ata Hasnain also expressed their displeasure with his remarks (retd.). He further said that he had requested them to return during his time as Chief Minister in 1996, but they declined. On January 23, he reinforced his remarks, saying that the time had come for them to return. Separate townships for Kashmiri Hindus have long been a cause of dispute in Kashmir, with Islamists, separatists, and mainstream political parties all opposing it. Burhan Muzaffar Wani, a Hizbul Mujahideen fighter, has vowed to assault the “Hindu composite townships” that were supposed to be developed to help the non-Muslim communities. Wani described the restoration strategy as mirroring Israeli ideas in a 6-minute video clip. Burhan Wani, on the other hand, welcomed the Kashmiri Hindus’ homecoming and offered to protect them. He also stated that the Amarnath Yatra will be secure. Burhan Wani’s death was also lamented by Kashmiri Hindus in the Valley. Zakir Rashid Bhat, Burhan Wani’s self-styled successor in the Hizbul Mujahideen, also invited Kashmiri Hindus to return and promised them safety. During the 2016 Kashmir unrest, crowds stormed transit camps housing Kashmir Hindus in Kashmir. About 200–300 Kashmiri Hindu employees fled transit camps in Kashmir on the night of July 12 due to protester attacks on the camps. They staged protests against the government for the attacks on their camp and demanded that all Kashmiri Hindu employees in the Kashmir valley be evacuated immediately. During the disturbance, around 1300 government personnel from the neighborhood departed the area. Posters telling Hindus to flee Kashmir or face death were also purportedly placed near transit camps in Pulwama by the terrorist group Lashkar-e-Toiba.

  • With a change to the J&K Migrants (Special Drive) Recruitment Rules, 2009 in October 2017, the job package was extended to Hindus who did not relocate out of the valley. Village Defense Committees were formed in 1995 to safeguard Hindus in rural regions against violence. Following the assassination of a Kashmiri Hindu Sarpanch, Ajay Pandita Bharti, in June 2020, former Jammu and Kashmir police commissioner Shesh Paul Vaid stated that minority Hindus might be armed and Village Defense Committees may be formed with appropriate preparation.

Kashmiri Pandits Still Living In The Valley Caught Between The Devil And The Deep Sea

  • Despite a significant departure of local Hindus in the early 1990s, around 350 families remain in the Valley. The majority of these families live in communities where they own property, and the family leaders have chosen not to join the migrant wave. The Mattoos, who lives in Srinagar’s Gogjibagh neighbourhood, are a notable Srinagar family that chose to stay in the Valley. R.K. Mattoo, the former Conservator of Forests, has stepped down. He comes from a family of well-educated, powerful feudal landowners whose holdings were dispersed over the Valley’s several regions. His wife, Neerja Mattoo, was an English teacher at the Government Women’s College in Srinagar’s Maulana Azad Road. Amitabh Mattoo, Neerja’s son, is a prominent academician and a worldwide strategic affairs specialist. In 1987, Amitabh qualified for the IPS, and in 1988, he qualified for the IAS. He, on the other hand, selected a career in academia and is now a professor at JNU. Of course, Neerja is the family’s soul and spirit. Despite being persuaded to leave the Valley when the rest of her community was fleeing, she chose to stay in Kashmir and continue instructing college students. The Mattoos also have residences in Jammu and Delhi. Despite this, Neerja is adamant about not leaving Kashmir.

  • She doesn’t “just adore Kashmir; I live Kashmir,” as she puts it. She is well-liked in the community, and it is possible that it is because of her widespread acceptance that the family was able to stay in Srinagar throughout the turbulent 1990s without any government protection. In the mornings, she would go down to her college, and in the evenings, she would walk back home. “Not that I didn’t feel threatened, but my devotion to the pupils surpassed all else.” We have lived unscathed thanks to Shiva’s blessings,” she regularly tells individuals who are perplexed by her stubbornness to disregard what is going on around her. Other Kashmiri Pandits have managed to stay in the Valley for the past 32 years with the help of their Muslim neighbours. The assistance of their Muslim neighbours has been crucial to Pandits residing in the south Kashmir regions as well as those living in the central districts of Srinagar, Budgam, and Ganderbal. Continuing in the Valley’s mainly Muslim majority has, however, resulted in lifestyle adjustments. Pandit women do not dress as they did in the past while travelling to regions where they are unknown. Women from Pandit families who continue to reside in the Valley blend seamlessly among Muslim women.

  • They don’t wear sarees and don’t have a ‘Tilak’ on their foreheads. “In our hamlet, we dress traditionally as we did before the exodus,” a Pandit lady from central Kashmir explained, “but when we travel to locations where we are not personally known, it is always wise to make ourselves as unrecognisable as possible.” Despite their presence in Kashmir, the few remaining members of the Pandit community endure culture shock. “Finding a partner for your daughter from outside the Valley is hard unless you agree on her moving away after marriage,” said the father of two girls of marriageable age in another Valley region. Except for a few security guards in sites where terrorists are still active, the government has opted not to provide any assistance to those Pandits who continue to reside in the Valley. “We don’t have any reservations in government employment like those allocated for migrant members of our community under the Prime Minister’s programme.”

  • “It’s an irony that we are a neglected bunch while having opted to overcome all hurdles to survive here,” remarked an unemployed postgraduate Pandit lady. The price paid by these insignificant members of the Pandit community is enormous. They’re trapped in a deep-sea predicament with the devil. Outside the Valley, their family see them as traitors, while they continue to live in fear and misery in their ancestral homes. The only hope many members of the rapidly disappearing community have is that their families and other community members will return home one day. Is their optimism realistic, or are they pursuing a mirage? At the moment, there is no definitive answer to this conundrum.

‘Resettlement Of Kashmiri Pandits, 25 K Jobs, Development Of Region’: Hm Amit Shah Underlines Govt’s 2022 J&k Plan

  • On Saturday, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said that the government has planned to resettle all displaced Kashmiri Pandits in the valley by 2022, as well as provide 25,000 employment and rail connections. The government, according to the Minister, pays Rs 13,000 per month to the families of 44,000 Kashmiri Pandits who hold relief cards. “The government also gives free rations and hopes to re-establish people in their Valley homes by 2022.” The Home Minister was responding to a question in the Lok Sabha about the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill of 2021. He also assuaged the people of Jammu and Kashmir’s fears by telling them that “no one will lose their land in the Union Territory” since the government had ample land for development. “The main challenge for the sector in Jammu and Kashmir was that they couldn’t secure land if they wanted to start a business. We amended the law of the country when (Art)370 was repealed. Now that the situation has improved, industries will be built within Kashmir.” By 2022, Shah added, 25,000 government employment will be created for Jammu and Kashmir’s youth, with around 3,000 positions already being given out in the previous 17 months. The 8.45-kilometer Banihal tunnel is set to open this year, according to the Minister, and “we are also planning to connect the Kashmir Valley with the trains by 2022.” Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made Jammu and Kashmir a high priority, according to him, and a slew of development projects have been undertaken in the state. The Minister, while elaborating on the development measures implemented in Jammu and Kashmir after the state’s abrogation of Article 370, stated that many J&K citizens who had not had power for the previous 70 years had now received it in the last seven months. He stated that the administration intends to make Jammu and Kashmir self-sufficient and that development would reach even the most distant districts.

  • The Minister said that the three families that controlled Jammu and Kashmir for 70 years did nothing to improve the health care system or create jobs. He said that before Article 370 was abolished, no significant corporate firm would invest in Jammu and Kashmir, but that now numerous business people are doing so. In August 2019, the government repealed Article 370, which granted Jammu and Kashmir special status, and suggested that the state be divided into two Union territories, Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. The National Conference and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were outraged by the action, but leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party praised it (BJP).

  • According to the Minister, the Central government has granted Rs 881 crore to Jammu and Kashmir under the PMDP (Prime Minister’s Development Package). After the BJP took power in Jammu & Kashmir, the Panchayati Raj system was reinstated. There were around 3,650 sarpanches and 33,000 panches chosen. “There will no longer be a dynasty of kings and queens; instead, the leader will be chosen by popular vote.” According to the Minister, the central government has deposited approximately Rs 1,500 crore straight into bank accounts, paving the door for local development in Jammu and Kashmir. On the campus of IIT Jammu, classes have begun. Both AIIMS is currently under development.

  • He also stated unequivocally that his government is committed to granting complete statehood to Jammu & Kashmir when the time comes. The Minister further appealed that political parties and leaders comprehend the circumstances of the former state, which was divided into two Union Territories: J&K with a legislative assembly and Ladakh without one. “Jammu and Kashmir will be granted statehood when the time comes… Please be aware of the circumstances in the Union Territory and refrain from making any remarks that may mislead the people of J&K “While addressing the Lok Sabha, Shah added.

Kashmir Files And Different State Government Reactions

  • The Telangana Chief minister further chastised the BJP administration for inflaming communal tensions in the name of religion. On Monday, Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao described the “Kashmir Files” as “another play” staged by the Narendra Modi administration to attract votes, and said the country needed to talk about development, irrigation, and unemployment. He criticized the BJP administration for inflaming communal tensions in the guise of religion in order to divide people.

  • The motto is “Kashmir Files.” There will be irrigation files, industrial files, and economic files if there is a progressive administration. What exactly are the Kashmir Files? During a press conference, he questioned, “Who wants it?” The Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) leader stated that Kashmiri Pandits are claiming that this is a ‘tamasha’ to get votes in the 2024 election because they have not received any help. “Do something for the pandits of Kashmir.” You only speak in nice tones. What is the most important thing to you? “You’re attempting to sell Hindu doctrine to garner votes,” the Chief Minister, also known as KCR, stated.

  • He claimed that the BJP exploits emotive concerns in the run-up to every election. “They are openly admitting that we have failed. There is nothing we can do. We only have Kashmir Files, Pulwama, Pakistan, where we depict people as demons and ask for votes in their name “He went on to say that this is not in the country’s best interests. KCR said that the Modi administration came to power as a result of the previous UPA government’s failings during the last eight years. “Suggest me one area where India has advanced,” he added, citing figures that show India is falling behind nations like Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Bhutan in global rankings.

Movies And Documentaries Made On Kashmiri Pandits

Movies

  1. 2020 Hindi film Shikara by Vidhu Vinod Chopra is based on the exodus of Kashmiri Hindus.

  2. 2022 film The Kashmir Files directed by Vivek Agnihotri starring Anupam Kher, Mithun Chakraborty, and Darshan Kumar.

Book

  1. Our Moon Has Blood Clots, a 2013 book by Indian journalist Rahul Pandita is based on a firsthand account of the exodus.

  2. My Frozen Turbulence in Kashmir by Jagmohan.

  3. On Uncertain Ground – Displaced Kashmiri Pandits in Jammu and Kashmir by Ankur Datta.

  4. A Long Dream of Home – The persecution, exile, and exodus of Kashmiri Pandits by Siddhartha Gigoo and Varad Sharma.

Kashmir Files Movie Review- The Bridge (13angle)

Movie Review On Kashmir Files

The Ongoing Controversy

  • Jammu and Kashmir People’s Conference chairman Sajad Lone stated on Tuesday that Kashmiri Muslims suffered 50 times more than Kashmiri Pandits in the 1990s, adding to the continuing controversy surrounding ‘The Kashmir Files.’ Lone, who called ‘The Kashmir Files’ a piece of fiction, predicted that the film’s creator will drown the country in hatred. “There is no denying that the Kashmiri Pandits have been treated unfairly. Muslims in Kashmir have suffered 50 times as much as Pandits. It’s impossible to capture the suffering of a single community. We’re in this together. My own father was killed by gunshots “According to Lone, a former minister of Jammu and Kashmir. He went on to say that in the 1990s, Kashmiri Muslims were as powerless as Pandits.”Although they (the filmmakers) exaggerated, everyone has suffered here… However, the major goal of the film’s director, Vivek Agnihotri, is to spread seeds of enmity amongst different tribes, not to highlight the sorrow of Pandits. Even now, he is unaware that Pandits live among us. Has he considered them? They are our brothers, and we love them, yet we were as powerless as Kashmiri Pandits in the 1990s “Added he.

  • Himanta Biswa Sarma, the Chief Minister of Assam, and his cabinet colleagues went to see Vivek Agnihotri’s film The Kashmir Files at a theatre. Following that, he declared a half-day special leave for any government workers who wanted to see the film. After informing their supervisor and submitting the movie tickets at the office the next day, the leave would be granted. Assam isn’t the only state that has shown support for the film. Other states headed by the BJP are following suit. Narottam Mishra, the Home Minister of Madhya Pradesh, has given special leave to police officers who wish to see the film. On Wednesday, state Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, along with other lawmakers and cabinet members, viewed the video. Manohar Lal Khattar, the Chief Minister of Haryana, saw the film on Sunday. “Movie #TheKashmirFiles is a heart-wrenching account of the anguish, suffering, struggle, and trauma endured by Kashmiri Hindus in the 1990s,” CM Chouhan tweeted while announcing the movie’s exemption from entertainment tax. We’ve chosen to make it tax-free in Madhya Pradesh because it has to be seen by as many people as possible.” Karnataka, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Uttarakhand, Haryana, Tripura, and Uttar Pradesh are among the states that have waived the state tax. Prior to The Kashmir Files, Bollywood films such as Padman, Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, Tanhaji, Dangal, and Neerja were excused from paying taxes. In political circles, however, the Anupam Kher-Mithun Chakraborty movie has gotten rave reviews. Due to the epidemic, the release of The Kashmir Files, a low-budget film with a budget of Rs 20 crore based on the 1990 flight of Kashmiri Pandits during the Kashmir unrest, was postponed. However, only three days after its release on March 11, it surpassed the 50-crore milestone at the box office. It made the greatest single-day total of Rs 19.15 crore on Holi, surpassing the 100-crore barrier and approaching the 150-crore level.

Top 13 Facts About Kashmiri Pandits Genocide

  1. The mass movement, or large-scale flight, of Kashmiri Hindus, often known as “Kashmiri Pandits,” from the mostly Muslim Kashmir Valley in Indian-administered Kashmir in the aftermath of a largely political separatist rebellion in the early months of 1990 is known as the Kashmiri Exodus.

  2. A total of 90,000–100,000 Pandits out of a population of 120,000–140,000 felt driven to flee, and 30–80 people were killed in the process.

  3. The killings of certain high-profile officials among Kashmiri Pandits sparked dread and panic among many Kashmiri Pandits, and the rumours and uncertainty that followed may have been the latent reasons for the migration.

  4. Some Hindu nationalist publications and some displaced Pandits’ fears that the violence was “genocide” or “ethnic cleansing” are regarded to be inaccurate.

  5. Some displaced Kashmiri Pandits have created the Panun Kashmir (“Our Own Kashmir”) movement, which has advocated for a separate homeland for Kashmiri Hindus in the Valley but opposes autonomy for Kashmir on the grounds that it would encourage the development of an Islamic state.

  6. One of the primary aspects of the ruling Bhartiya Janata Party’s electoral agenda is the return to Kashmir’s homeland. Because they have not crossed an international boundary, Kashmiri Pandits are not called “refugees.” Many want to be classified as Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), but the Indian government has refused to grant them such status, citing concerns over international participation in Kashmir, which it regards to be its internal matter.

  7. Kashmiri Pandits are considered ‘migrants’ by the Indian government.

  8. Few Pandits expected their exile to extend more than a few months at the time of their flight.

  9. Pandits from Kashmir first settled in the Jammu Division, the bottom half of what is now India’s union territory of Jammu and Kashmir, where they lived in refugee camps, sometimes in filthy conditions.

  10. Many displaced Pandits from the urban elite were able to find work in other parts of India as the exile lasted longer, but those from the lower middle class, particularly those from rural areas, languished longer in refugee camps, with some living in poverty; this created tensions with the host communities—whose social and religious practises, while Hindu, differed from those of the brahmin Pandits—and made assimilation more difficult.

  11. In the camps, many displaced Pandits suffered from emotional despair and a sense of hopelessness. Exiled Kashmiri Pandits have also authored autobiographical memoirs, novels, and poetry to document and comprehend their experiences.

  12. Exodus Day is honoured by Kashmiri Hindu groups on January 19.

  13. During the disturbance, around 1300 government personnel from the neighbourhood departed the area. Posters telling Hindus to flee Kashmir or face death were also purportedly placed near transit camps in Pulwama by the terrorist group Lashkar-e-Toiba.

Harsh Anand- 13angle writer

Harsh Anand

Writer

13angle

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