India-based opinion website The Wire’s report titled “The Untold Story of Kashmir After August 5, 2019” paints a gloomy picture of Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir in contravention to what being claimed as “normal” by the Modi regime.
According to Kashmir Media Service, The Wire’s reporter, Arfa Khanum Sherwani , spoke to some Kashmiri people in Zainakadal downtown area of Srinagar to learn what the ground situation is really like, and she concluded that everyone hesitates from speaking and even if someone dares to speak, he with tears in his eyes could only say “he needs nothing to add as everything is much clear”.
Having spoken to some people, the reporter reached the conclusion that: “The Indian government has been keen to push the narrative that the situation on the ground is ‘normal’ – and in fact even better than they were before.”
However, “the people of Kashmir painted a very different picture – in which silence, fear, rising prices and unemployment have taken over the region”.
One of the interviewees told the reporter that he had nothing to say, as life had lost meaning to him. He was just spending the day. “Anyone who speaks up is picked up in the evening and shifted to an unknown location,” he said. Another young Kashmiri said, “We have been rendered crippled economically.”
In response to a question, an interviewee said, the situation has become worse after the abrogation of Article 370.” A man wearing pharen told the reporter that there is a curfew-like situation here (Srinagar) after the evening.
It has been more than three years since Article 370 was diluted and Jammu and Kashmir’s special status was snatched away, and the erstwhile state was divided into two union territories.
At the end, the reporter concluded her report with these words: “People usually hesitate to speak [out of fear], and if someone is ready to talk, he discusses economic situation and avoids discussion on political matters. There is the difference between the pre-August 2019 and post August 2019 situation like that between sky and earth. Having visited many times, this time I noticed that this is an entirely changed Kashmir.”
“When I talked to anyone about the ground situation, he with tears in his eyes said, ‘Everything is clear to you. If I say anything about the situation, this situation will no longer exist, either’. Everyone has learnt over the past three years, since the Article 370 was revoked, as to what the price of speaking up here is. It is the first time that no one is ready to speak, here. It never happened in the past” she concluded.
Disclaimer: No one speaks up as he knows price of speaking , The Wire’s report on IIOJK ground situation - Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect Latheefarook.com point-of-view