Stories about occupied kashmir

Aamir Liaquat as Burhan Wani is not only artistically insensible, it’s also quite disrespectful

From religious talk shows to the National Assembly, is there no limit to where an over-abundance of self-confidence will carry a man in Pakistan? After all, Aamir Liaquat has now announced that he will be playing the titular role in Ayub Khosa’s upcoming biopic about Burhan Wani, the fallen commander of Hizbul Mujahideen and a Kashmiri freedom fighter. The filmmaker himself has yet to confirm Mr Liaquat’s announcement. If true, one wonders if the delay is the result of him waiting for a more opportune moment, or whether he is simply sitting quietly in a dark corner examining his career choices. ...

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How Modi sold India’s reputation to get his Masood Azhar ‘trophy’

Most of Indian media is portraying Masood Azhar’s United Nations Security Council (UNSC) terrorist designation as a long-sought victory for their country, one that was only brought about by Narendra Modi’s campaign of pressure on Pakistan which supposedly got China to reverse its position on this issue and finally agree to the sanction. While that narrative is easily believed by the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) hyper-nationalist Hindutva base, the political opposition immediately pointed out that the global body’s official statement made no mention of the many attacks that New Delhi accused him of masterminding. The conspicuous omission of the 2001 Parliament attack, the 2008 Mumbai ‘false flag’ ...

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Of India’s refusal to attend SAARC and its mistrust and pessimism towards Pakistan

“If France and Germany who fought several wars can live in peace, why not India and Pakistan?” Well batted, Imran Khan. To begin with, the occasion that has led to this eastward flow of a fresh breeze from Pakistan – the inauguration of the Kartarpur corridor – must be celebrated without any political hesitations. It is indeed an occasion that deserves to be celebrated with the child-like joy that results from the deep spiritual moorings of the subcontinent. Indeed, Imran appeared sincere, hopeful and emotional in his speech and anyone with faith in humanity feels tempted to go head over ...

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Changing maps will not mean Kashmir is a part of you, India

The Indian government wants to pass the Geospatial Information Regulation Bill (GIRB). This bill will essentially make any map in India (ONE that does not toe the official line on geospatial information provided by the Indian government) illegal and liable to seven years in jail and a fine of up to a whopping billion Indian rupees. Predictably Pakistan reacted by shooting off a letter to the United Nations (UN) protesting that the official Indian maps show the disputed territories of Kashmir as wholly part of India, including Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK). While one respects the sovereignty a foreign nation state, the provisions of this law ...

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Kashmir Day does not mean anything to the average Pakistani

Growing up during the turbulent 80s in Karachi, I was never fully aware of the Kashmir issue. As a matter of fact, Kashmir was just a faraway scenic land for most Karachiities. It was largely irrelevant in the bigger scheme of things and it barely evoked sympathy from within us.   A certain event strengthened this notion back in 1989. After my matriculation exams, I was trying to brush up my general knowledge in order to apply for a course in the Pakistan Army. A certain piece of news caught my attention regarding rigging in the General Elections in Occupied Kashmir. This inevitably led to ...

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The birth of widows in conflict ridden Kashmir

In 2008 and 2010, Kashmir witnessed the most severe and popular anti-India movement leading to the death of more than 200 individuals, mostly teenagers. The decade’s old conflict has given birth to many widows and half-widows. The men who died in the Kashmir conflict can never come back, but their memories bring joy as well as pain to their families who are yearning to see their graves.  “Ro rahi hai yeh zameen, ro raha hai aasmaan.” (The earth is wailing, the sky is wailing) Three sisters in particular, Ruqaiya, Zarifa and Shamima, lost their husbands to this conflict and have been destined to live alone. But they did not ...

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Don’t cheer for Pakistan’s cricket team if you are in India, you may be suspended or stabbed!

In a bizarre demonstration of overbearing nationalism, a university in Uttar Pradesh suspended 67 Kashmiri students for cheering for the Pakistani cricket team. This may be a clinical sign that the sore-loser syndrome has reached its terminal stage. I don’t watch cricket. All I really know about the sport is that Pakistan won the match because Shakil Afridi, incidentally the same guy who found Osama, scored a last-minute goal (also called a ‘touchdown’). I do know, though, that every India-Pakistan cricket match sends the neighbouring nations into a state of frenzy, which is quite natural. It doesn’t matter. As long as their skirmishes and battles are confined ...

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Welcome to the paradise on earth…

Welcome to the paradise on earth…  Welcome to the valley where rivers run red with the blood of innocent young men, Where a mother waits endlessly for her missing son to come back, Where a father shoulders the coffin of his teenage son. Photo: Haris Khan  Welcome to the paradise on earth… Welcome to the valley where the majestic mountains bow in sorrow, Where entire villages are gang raped by tyrants who crush the dreams of the nation under their boots, Where thousands of children are buried in unmarked graves,   Welcome to the paradise on earth… Welcome to the valley where freedom of speech is for ...

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Maqbool Butt: Kashmir doesn’t want any of it, no Indian rulers and no Pakistani generals!

Kashmir is the epicentre of Pakistan’s foreign policy in the region. The state of Pakistan continues to take pride in portraying itself as the most prolific advocator of the freedom for Kashmiri people.  But the harsh reality is that the establishment of Pakistan is very selective and biased in portraying the freedom movement of Kashmir to the Pakistani masses. If you belong to the right-wing militia and equate freedom of Kashmir to annexation with Pakistan, only then will you be projected as a ‘freedom fighter’ and a ‘hero’ of Kashmir in Pakistan. Otherwise, your struggle and sacrifices for the freedom of Kashmir are going to ...

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Kashmir may never become a part of Pakistan…

Kashmir has always been a hotbed of political discussions as far as our foreign policy goes. Even though the issue has lost a lot of its steam off late, it is something that remains etched in the mind of every Pakistani, every time India is mentioned. We celebrate Kashmir Day today, as the cold hard truth stares at us – it has been over 60 years and the Kashmir issue shows no signs of being settled. The area is claimed by both Pakistan and India because of its obvious strategic importance. There is no point in going into details of what caused ...

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