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India: Uprising and Repression in Kashmir, 2016 - a citizens’ report

14 December 2017

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This report is based on a team visit to Kashmir in October 2016. The team consisted of V. Suresh, Kavita Srivastava, Ramdas Rao and Pragnya Joshi, all PUCL members. (Jean Drèze, also a PUCL member, joined for one day and contributed to the report). The report has been prepared by the team members in their individual capacity, for internal discussion within PUCL, and is not to be considered as an official report of the PUCL. [This document is hosted at the sacw.net document archive]

Introduction

Uprising and Repression in Kashmir, 2016

Over the last several decades, the Kashmir valley, under the Indian State’s administration, has been witness to several massive human rights violations committed by state and non- state actors alike, as well as massive people’s protests and uprisings over the demand for freedom, or what is popularly known as Azaadi. Since the extra-judicial killing of Hizbul Mujahideen Commander Burhan Wani on 8 July 2016 by Indian armed forces, the Kashmir valley has entered a heightened phase of a war-like conflict, which is still raging on. This grave human rights crisis prompted a visit to Kashmir in late October 2016 by a team of human rights activists from People’s Union of Civil Liberties (PUCL).

Although documentation and fact-finding investigations on human rights violations in Kashmir have become a regular phenomenon since the late 1980s, the current tide of offensive launched by the Indian armed forces with the full support of both central and state governments as well as the distorted portrayal of the events unfolding in Kashmir by media houses in India have shocked the conscience of many citizens in India regarding the total apathy of the Indian political establishment coupled with a firm resolve to suppress all forms of protest and dissent by deploying lethal solutions. What has also concerned many human rights activists and citizens is that even the apex judiciary of the country has failed to hold the army accountable for its atrocities against the civilian population. Several times the Supreme Court has decided to let the army have impunity for its actions (as, for example, in the Pathribal encounter case). More recently, it refused to check the use of lethal pellet guns in Kashmir. [. . .]

download and read the full report

Uprising and Repression in Kashmir, 2016
by V. Suresh, Kavita Srivastava, Ramdas Rao, Pragnya Joshi and Jean Drèze