war and peace

Another Day in Kashmir

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From the relative sanctuary of our daily lives, this would seem like war. But for the average Kashmiri, it is just another day

From the relative sanctuary of our daily lives, this would seem like war. But for the average Kashmiri, it is just another day

It is morning in downtown Srinagar. Among the early risers are schoolchildren, devout men and women heading towards the mosque for prayers, and those who go to the local baker for their bread. There aren’t so many vehicles on the roads.

Within minutes, the scenario changes.

Young men assemble at various intersections, particularly on a Friday. And then the stone pelting begins. Shops down their shutters, but most people get on with their lives. It is just another day. The last two decades of incessant conflict in the valley has inured Kashmiris to violence. Usually, the angry men disappear after marking their protest. But sometimes without a warning the situation turns ugly. Lives are lost, and not necessarily of those who were a part of the demonstrations. The victim sometimes turns out to be a family’s only bread-earner.

And then there are further protests. It’s a vicious circle.

text by Rahul Pandita