A 10TH Jan report in the First-post magazine has highlighted that more and more youth, particularly the educated ones and those from well-off families in Indian Occupied Kashmir are joining militancy. This has spurred a new security concern in the Valley. First Post report also stated that the recent shift towards militancy of a scholar from Kupwara, Manan Wani, who was pursuing PhD in Geology at the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) is being seen by Hizbul as a “rebuff to India’s propaganda that youth are joining militant ranks because of unemployment and economic problems”.

Speaking about Manan joining Hizbul, its chief Syed Salahuddin said that, “for the past several years, the educated youth have joined Hizbul to take the ongoing movement to the logical conclusion.

While Indian media would project it as a new phenomenon, Kashmiri youth fighting for liberation of Kashmir has people from all walks of life, it includes; students, labors, social media and human rights activists, teachers, professors, artisans, writers and intellectuals. There is also massive participation of womenfolk and young girls; in their own way, they always take part in rallies and processions to register their resentment against Indian occupation.

As quoted by First-post, former Hizbul commander Zaf Akbar Bhat said that that there has been no letup in the number of educated youth joining militancy since it started in the 1990s. Bhat said that a number of militant commanders who were killed earlier were also “highly qualified”. “Joining of youths like Manan sends across a message to the international community that the freedom movement in Kashmir is running due to the conviction of people and that it was not about issues of unemployment.”

“A number of educated men like Ghulam Mohammad Mir, who was the Ameer of Hizbul and had done his Masters in three disciplines, were killed. Commander Masood Ahmad Tantray was also a postgraduate in two subjects and had pleaded the need for the return of peace to Kashmir before the Indian home secretary in 2001,” he added.

Security officials see the entry of educated youth in militant ranks as a new threat. Even family members of police officials or active policemen are joining militancy. In a recent Fidayeen attack on a CRPF camp at Pulwama, in which five force personnel were killed, one of the militants was 16-year old Fardeen Ahmad Khanday, the son of a police constable.

Al Jazeera report on 6th May, gives a dismal picture of Kashmir Valley, Indian security forces confronting rebels in urban and rural areas, gunfight and thud of fire and explosions, martyrdom of Kashmiri youth, hundreds of residents marching towards the gun battle areas to help the rebels escape, triggering more violence between civilians and Indian security forces and stone pelting by youth, amid slogans of ‘Hum lay Kay rahein gay azadi’. The funeral processions of Kashmiri youth swell to tens of thousands of people, who would bury the martyrs wrapped in Pakistan flag, and the cycle is repeated almost every second day.

India who claims that Kashmir belongs to her should just look at the pictures of Pakistan flags in funeral processions and ask a question, isn’t it an expression of sea of hate for India and an ocean of love for Pakistan?

Indian Army Chief ‘s rhetoric that ‘Azadi not possible, you can’t fight us’, came in the backdrop of growing anxiety in Occupied Kashmir population and also highlights psychological and physical fatigue of Indian Army. Bipin Rawat went on to boast, “These numbers (of militants who are killed in gun battles with the army) don’t matter to me because I know this cycle will continue. There are fresh recruitments happening. I only want to stress that all this is futile; nothing is going to be achieved by them. You can’t fight the army,” .India today stands thoroughly exposed due to inhuman conduct of her forces and a laundry list of atrocities includes rapes, missing persons, mass graves, indiscriminate use of pellet guns, search and warrant campaigns and making the Occupied Kashmir as the largest human prison on the earth.

Induction of ISIS into Kashmir valley was never supported by genuine Kashmiri leaders and it appears that Ajit Doval’s doctrine of sustained chaos in Afghanistan and Kashmir valley have the same agenda. Now Ajit Doval’s ISIS enterprise has started appearing in other states like Kerala, Karnataka and Indian North East. Indian intelligence agencies are now trying to develop a perception that Muslim youth in India is being affected by ISIS ideology and all internal problems faced by India are foreign sponsored.

The Wire (a major Indian online outlet) exposed the link between ISIS and BJP. ‘Assam police has detained six alleged Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) members for questioning over the recovery of a purported ISIS flag in Lower Assam. As per local media reports, on May 7 night, acting on a tip-off, police in Nalbari district’s Belsor area picked up the BJP members for their alleged role in sticking the flag to a tree in the area. The members have been identified as Tapan Barman (from Kaihati), Dwipjyoti Thakuria, Sorojjyoti Baishya and Pulak Barman (from Belsore), Mojamil Ali (from Chamata) and Moon Ali (from Baruakur). Barman has been identified as a former Congress councillor who shifted to the BJP and is presently a member of its district committee.

On May 3, villagers found the flag with the message “Join the ISIS” written in Arabic stuck to a tree in a paddy field in Koihata area of the district, following which they informed the nearby Belsore police station. The police took off the flag and told local reporters that it would conduct an inquiry as to who might be responsible for it. The incident created a flutter in the area as six similar flags with “ISIS NE” inscribed on them were found in the state’s Goalpara district on May 2.

International community and Human Rights organizations have to realize that it’s a matter of lives of 12 million Kashmiris and can no more be sacrificed on altar of Realpolitik and selective interpretation of UN resolutions on Kashmir by India, and, that India has hoodwinked the humanity for too long and time has come to solve this longstanding issue as per the will of people of Kashmir. The long road for peace in South Asia passes through the Kashmir Valley and there is no other way.


The writer is a freelance journalist.