‘Articulate political realities of Kashmir’
Anthology of writings on 2010 unrest released
Srinagar June 12: Stating that the Kashmir struggle should be contextualized in proper historical perspective, the journalists, academics and writers have stressed that articulating the political realities of Kashmir is the need of hour.
The views came to fore at the launching ceremony of the book- “Until My Freedom Has Come: The New Intifada in Kashmir” here today. The book which has been published by Penguin is an anthology of the writings penned down by various journalists, academics and writers during the unrest of 2010.
“Articulating the political realities of Kashmir is the need of hour. Writing should be as an act of resistance,” said Kashmiri journalist based in New Delhi, Najeeb Mubariki while addressing the gathering.
Mubaraki said the peaceful protests in 2010 have changed the perceptions across India regarding the Kashmir issue.
“Given the fact of propaganda of Islamism propagated through official and media narratives, there has been a small shift that how a section of media are forced to think about Kashmir. Last year protests forced a change in some way. This book has become a document for the future,” he said.
Mubaraki further said the Kashmiris should not get annoyed or react if the state propagates its version of “peace” in Kashmir.
“The state will say the peace has returned. Kashmiris need not to prove that it is not. Each day is a testimony to intimidation, of struggle, of torture, of oppression. This enforcement of silence cannot be described as peace. The realities on ground are ripping apart the official narrative,” he added.
Noted film maker, Sanjay Kak, said launch of the book was a moment of celebration as people were beginning to speak up their mind.
“I had come (to Kashmir) in 2003. That time terrible, terrible, silence surrounded everything. It was profoundly disturbing for me,” Kak who has also edited the anthology told the gathering. “In 2011, everything has changed. There has been an extraordinary pouring of writing. The issues are not written in narrow ways. Kashmiris are employing creative ways to express reality”.
Regarding the book’s title, Kak said, “For me, 2010 was also Intifada of the minds which pushed aside chains of occupation. We should celebrate the compilation of anthology. It does not represent conversation among Kashmiris, but it also offers itself to outside world”.
He said the book was a definitive moment in the history of Kashmir. “It encapsulates memory. It freezes the extraordinary moments of 2010. It’s a compilation of cartoons, blogs, personal, and scholarly writings and essays,” Kak said.
In response to the use of languages, he said English has become a language of power and Urdu has been weakened. “I will be interested in the efficacy of deployment of language,” Kak said.
During the event, it was stressed that more and more Kashmiris should write their own narratives. The anthology is third book in a row after the launch of the much celebrated books of Basharat Peer’s Curfewd Night, and Mirza Waheed’s novel, The Collaborator.
“I want that after every one or two year, a book on Kashmir should come out,” Author of novel, The collaborator, Mirza Waheed said. “The text should shake the empire” he added.
The academics suggested streamlining the Kashmiri struggle to take it to its logical end.
Scholar Muhammad Junaid said that there has been no sense of struggles as a project.
“It is not always to go out. We should capitalize on our gains which will lead us to somewhere in the future. The sacrifices should have been memorialized on the ground. There is also paucity of narrative of our struggle. Struggles should be a global project,” Junaid said.
He said the perceptions regarding the Kashmir have changed. “Kashmiris have become articulate. Nobody should represent them. There is a need to contextualize the struggle in historic perspective,” he added.
Another scholar and panelist, Saiba Verma said her writing in the anthology was an assemblage of different voices. “I wanted to study the psychology of the conflict. Like we have talked to doctors, their experiences and impediments during the curfew period,” she said.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 12 Jun 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 12 Jun 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 13 Jun 2011 00:00:00 IST
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