Srinagar, December 1.Jan.2020: In occupied Kashmir, marred by killings, crackdowns, arrests, anti-India protests and prolonged military siege the year 2019 happened to be the most brutal and agonizing for the oppressed and hapless people of the territory.
According to the data issued by the Research Section of Kashmir Media Service, today, Indian troops in their unabated acts of state terrorism martyred 210 innocent Kashmiris including three women and nine teenagers during the year. Sixteen of the martyrs were killed in custody or fake encounters. Most of the martyrs were highly qualified youth. The killings rendered 14 women widowed and 29 children orphaned while 64 women were molested by the men in uniform. Indian forces destroyed 249 residential houses during the period.
As many as 2,417 people were injured including 827 in pellet firing when troops used brute force on protesters and during house raids and crackdowns. 162 people lost vision after being hit by pellets in one eye. 12,892 people including Hurriyat activists, students, young boys and women were arrested during the year. Some sources say that the total number of those who were detained is over forty thousand. Many teenage Kashmiri boys have been kept hundreds and thousands of miles away from their homes in jails of far-flung Indian states like Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan.
The report pointed out that on 5th August, 2019, India revoked Articles 370 and 35A of its constitution that guaranteed special status to occupied Kashmir. The territory particularly the Kashmir valley and Muslim majority areas of Jammu region since then continue to remain under military siege and lockdown, which entered 149th day today. Indian authorities did not allow people to offer any prayer including Friday prayers for 19 consecutive weeks at historic Jamia Masjid in Srinagar besides disallowing other religious functions like Muharram processions and Eid Milad-un-Nabi (SAW) gatherings. Internet, prepaid mobile and text messaging services also remain shut since then. Almost all Hurriyat leaders including Syed Ali Gilani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Muhammad Yasin Malik, Shabbir Ahmad Shah and Aasiya Andrabi remain in jails or under house arrest.
Kashmir Press Club during a meeting in Srinagar demanded restoration of internet services without any delay. The meeting was attended by all editors’ bodies and journalist associations. The participants maintained that the clampdown on internet had severely crippled the functioning of media fraternity in the Kashmir Valley.
In order to distort the history of Muslim majority Jammu and Kashmir, the Modi-led Indian government has decided to give a Hindutva touch to the curriculum followed in schools and colleges of occupied Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh region in the name of revision. Experts including Delhi based renowned educationist, Janaki Rajan, told media that the move was aimed at “saffronisation”of textbooks in the occupied territory.