EVER since more than 40 Indian paramilitary soldiers were killed in a suicide attack in Pulwama on February 14 this year, the Indian mainstream has gone mad with more hawkish nationalists calling for revenge and war.
The incident took place in Indian-administered Kashmir, where an armed insurgency for independence has been going on for years. The Indian government generally blames
The lone bomber involved was a Kashmiri Muslim, and the Pakistan-based Islamic extremist group Jaish-E-Mohammad has claimed responsibility for the incident. Since then, supporters of the ruling
The anger also spilled over outside India in countries with sizable populations of the Indian Diaspora. Candle-light vigils and prayers were organized for the slain soldiers, and donations for the bereaved families started pouring in from celebrities.
Though it is sad that so many families lost their loved ones in a single stroke, the hysteria caused by this tragedy suppressed the wails of those Kashmiri women who lost their
Soldiers gang raped 150 Kashmiri women in 1991
On February 23,
The anniversary of the incident came and passed without much coverage in the media.
In an environment of
Repression by custodians of peace
Undoubtedly, we should all deplore the killings of soldiers who mostly came from poor and less privileged families, but are we ready to question the repression of people by the custodians of peace and security?
Konan Poshpora is not the only instance of state barbarity or sexual violence by the Indian forces. There have been many other instances all over India, of how in the name of maintaining peace or protecting the
Those who are spewing so much hatred and calling for revenge against Pakistan or Kashmiris because of the killings of more than 40 soldiers, need to take a moment to remember shameful episodes such as Konan
For the record, the lone attacker involved in Pulwama was also detained and humiliated by the Indian forces for no fault of his own, according to his family. He was returning home when he was picked up during a protest and forced to rub his nose on the ground.
Those talking of revenge are forgetting that such harsh punitive measures have turned many into separatists and extremists. In the end, ordinary soldiers coming from poor families suffer, not those who incite passions for their narrow political ends.
Konan Poshpora is a reminder, not only that everything served to the citizens as a recipe for peace by the ruling classes can be accepted at face value, but we cannot let them decide in our name what is good for the nation. Rather than mimicking them, we need to make them accountable for the crisis in
[Countercurrents.org, India February 26, 2019]
[Gurpreet Singh is a Canada- based journalist who publishes Radical Desi—a monthly magazine that covers alternative politics.]