The Sringar International Airport was today locked down due to snowfall in the Kashmir valley.
Flights to/from Srinagar were delayed with consequential impact across network.
"Due to snowfall, runway at Srinagar Airport has been closed until further notice," an airport official told The Kashmiriyat.
The first documentary of famous Kashmir Journalist, Fahad Shah titled ' Bring Him back' was released today on the 34 death anniversary of Maqbool Butt, the founder of Jammu Kashmir Liberation front.
The film is produced by Talat Butt, Co-produced by RåFILM Sweden and JKTV Manchester.
The film that has been shot over a period of three years from 2013 to 2015 in Kashmir was released for public on Sunday.
It was initially released in London at the University of Westminster in 2015 and later on screened at the Humboldt-University of Berlin, Lund University of Sweden, British Parliament, This is the first time that the filmmakers have released the film worldwide for public.
Fahad Shah's documentary follows Shahmali Begum, the 84-year-old mother of Bhat, who has been campaigning to get her son's mortal remains back to Kashmir for last 34 years.
The film's director, Fahad Shah, who was educated in London, is a journalist and editor currently based in Kashmir frequently writes for international publications. He is the founding editor of The Kashmir Walla magazine and the editor of the anthology Of Occupation and Resistance: Writings from Kashmir (2013).
Fahad Shah has ground reported from nooks and corners of Kashmir valley bringing the issues of utmost concern in public domain. He is currently working on his second book.
The producer of the Documentary, Talat Bhat is a Sweden based Kashmiri activist, documentary filmmaker, and trade union campaigner, who has a Masters degree in Media Production and is researching the impacts of new media technologies in conflict zones.
The concerns of Maqbool resound in the poem that he wrote about a widespread anxiety underpinning the Kashmiri people during his incarceration at Srinagar Jail.
Taksuur yeli gasih shesthrwen panjran
Adeh hai nairan saen arman
Baaleh yaar, yeli sheen gali
Adeh hai nairan saen armaan
When the cages will be decimated
Our dreams will come to life
When snow will melt from mountains
Our dreams will come to life.
Writing his story on 12 April 1972 from Camp Prison Lahore in a letter about the initiation of his political career, Maqbool Bhat wrote:
“It was 1945 or 1946 when I was eight or nine years old child. At this time Kashmir was ruled by the Dogra Family and the entire Kashmiri nation was living a life of slavery. One of the many forms of slavery is called feudalism. The Dogra rulers had appointed jagirdars in our country. The peasants did all the labour but the owners of the lands and their produce were these very jagirdars.”
The First Political action of Maqbool Bhat found its genesis in the Marxist Theory, “Social classes and the accompanying class struggles inherently exist in a capitalistic society. In their 1848 political pamphlet ‘The Communist Manifesto’, Marx and Friedrich Engels explained how capitalism creates two classes of people in the society: The proletarians composed of the working class and the bourgeois composed of the capitalists or the owners of the means of production.ean then.”
It was the feudal system in the Maharaja’s Kashmir that forced Maqbool Bhat to participate in the first political action in his life long struggle against suppression, occupation and for equality, freedom and social justice.
Maqbool Bhat commenting on the inequality carried out by wealthy Political assailants wrote, “Therefore when hundreds of children laid themselves down in front of the Jagirdar’s car he was pleaded either to stop the further collection of grains or crush these starved and naked children under his car. I was also amongst these children and remember till this day that great big hue and cry.”
Maqbool Bhat was born on 18th February 1938 to a peasant family in Trehgam village Tehsil Handwara, district Kupwara. His father was called Ghulam Qadir Bhat. Maqbool Bhat was 11 years when his mother died. His father married again to provide mothering for his children. From second wife he had two sons, Manzoor and Zahoor and three daughters. The early years of Maqbool Bhat’s life, like thousands of other Kashmiri children were shaped by the harsh living conditions that characterized the life of peasants at this juncture of Kashmir history.
Maqbool Bhat in his teenage used to gather people from his village and discuss with them the ills of growing capitalism and ‘suppression’ of lower classes of the society. Maqbool during those days was very vocal against the power infested into the hands of wealthy men and his idea of Freedom was where all people be it peasants, Farmers or any class, caste or gender of the society, it should be treated equally.
Recalling his migration from one part of Kashmir to the other in an interview with weekly ‘Zindgi’ (life) after the Ganga Hijacking in 1971, Maqbool Bhat said:
“The arrests of freedom fighters post the arrest of Sher e Kashmir (Sheikh Abdullah) also started at the same time. My last exam was on 2nd of April and Sheikh was rearrested on 27th. Student activists were chased and arrested.”
Maqbool Continued, I was also an obvious target. Therefore, I went underground. After three months when the result came, I asked my father to go and bring the ‘temporary certificate’. Then we came to Pakistan in August 1958. First we came to Lahore but then in September 1958 settled in Peshawar.”
In this journey that changed his life course forever Maqbool Bhat was accompanied by his uncle Abdul Aziz Bhat.
To take care of his expenses Maqbool joined ’Injam’, a weekly magazine, as sub-editor and started working life as a journalist. He finished his MA (from Pehswar university) in Urdu literature and worked with ‘Anjam’ till the start of full time politics in 1960. Meanwhile his marriage was arranged by his uncle with a Kashmiri woman Raja Begum in 1961. He had two sons from this wife, Javed Maqbool born in 1962 and Shaukat Maqbool in 1964. In 1966 he married to a school teacher Zakra Begum and had a daughter Lubna Maqbool from her.
Maqbool Bhat contested and won the Kashmiri diaspora seat from Pehsawar in 1961.On 12th May 1963 the middle class Kashmiri activists including journalists, students, businessmen and lawyers began oppose the proposals by the Pakistani and Indian foreign ministers for dividing Kashmir on communal basis. This committee was headed by the Kashmir State Council member GM Lone who few years back Maqbool Bhat had campaigned for him. After the end of India Pakistan talks without any conclusion the committee also became inactive.
In an encounter with the soldiers while crossing the Line of Control for the first time, one of the NLF members Aurganzeb from Gilgit got killed and Kala Khan received injuries. Eventually Maqbool Bhat and two of his comrades, Kala Khan and Amir Ahmed were arrested. The government of Kashmir wanted the case to be dealt in a military court. But the case was heard in civil court for two years. The verdict was given in August 1968. Two among three were given death (Maqbool Bhat and Amir Ahmed) and one (Kala Khan) life sentence. Their members from Kashmir were given from three months to three years which included Nearly three hundred people including students, engineers, teachers, traders and government employees and they belonged to all parties including Plebiscite Front, Congress, and National Conference etc.
But Maqbool Bhat knew more work was to be done so they started planning escape from the prison and within a month and half managed to escape from the prison in Srinagar.It took them 16 days to reach to the first border check post of Azad Kashmir on 25th December where they were interrogated in the interrogation centre of Muzaffarabad till March 1969.
They were released and in November 1969 during the annual convention of Plebiscite Front Maqbool Bhat was elected as its president.
While recognizing the set a back of the premature exposure of NLF in the IOK, Maqbool Bhat was of the opinion that the above incident inspired and motivated more Kashmiris to join the armed struggle. Explaining this point in the above interview he says ‘now we have entered in a new phase. Not only are we able to speak in the language of power that is the only language India understands but also are able to make the world community, which has ignored our existence, to recognize us. In this world you have to have your existence recognised. We have our existence recognised and we will rest only when the existence of the entire Kashmiri nation is recognised, Inshallah. (op. cit.)
After being elected as the president of PF Maqbool Bhat spent next few years in campaigning for the political rights in Gilgit Baltistan and ‘Azad’ Kashmir. The PF launched a week long activities to highlight this situation and announced that next convention of PF will be held in those areas. During this week PF activists including Maqbool Bhat, Khaliq Ansari, Mir Qayyum, Amanullah Khan and GM Mir were arrested and forcefully exiled from the State boundaries.
What brought Maqbool Bhat into limelight was the Ganga, an Indian airliner that was hijacked on 30 January 1971 at 1305 hours while carrying 30 people including four crew members. The Hijackers were two young Kashmiris Hashim and Ashraf Qureshi. They brought the plane to Lahore airport and demanded the release of about two dozen political prisoners of NLF in the Indian prisons. On February the 1st 1971 all the passengers and crew were sent back to India via Amritsar and the ‘Ganga’ was set on fire. This situation later led to the 1971 war between India and Pakistan over the creation of Bangladesh.
The case started in December 1971 against Maqbool Bhat and after a long trial in which all but Hashim Qureshi were cleared of all charges other than dealing with arms and explosives etc. He was sentenced for fourteen years imprisonment.
Maqbool Bhat was executed in revenge, no one was allowed to see him before execution and he was buried inside the prison premises after execution. Maqbool Bhat’s sister says ‘I wish they let us have some soil from his grave in the prison’
Another Kashmiri who was imprisoned in Tihar for his involvement in freedom struggle wrote to ‘Kashmir Times’ Britain in 1995 that during his time in Tihar prison he spoke to several prisoners and prison staff about Maqbool Bhat. They all remember Maqbool Bhat with great respect for his dignified behaviour and for his struggle in prison for the rights of prisoners and the lower rank prison staff.
“I can say without any hesitation that I have not designed any conspiracy nor have I been a part of any group of conspirers. My character has always been transparent and unambiguous. However, I have done one thing and that is the rebellion against ignorance, greed of wealth, exploitation oppression, slavery and hypocrisy. If the ruling class of Pakistan that is a product of imperialism and represented by the bureaucracy and military dictatorship of this country views this as conspiracy then I have no hesitation in accepting the charge,” Maqbool had said in a statement to an Indian Court.
If Maqbool’s Political career is deeply studied, he was a follower of the communist ideology and his constant referrals to distribution of capital and poverty is a testimony to the same. His vision regarding the class politics and shaping up of a classless society as foretold was nothing other than Marxism. The shaping of Kashmir political discourse puts him among the great global revolutionists of all time.
The Only thing that remains to be found out is if Maqbool Bhat ever studied Marx, but surely the ideas and dogmas of the Marxist Political thought were deeply ingrained in him.
Finally an order has been issues by the Jammu Kashmir Government which comes as a relief for school teachers in Jammu Kashmir.
The order has been issued exempting teachers from rendering services during the elections.
According to the order, dated 10-01-2017 issued by Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, all the Deputy Commissioners ( District Election Officers) have been ordered not engage any official (Teacher, Lecturer) for Election Duties.
Mohammad Farhan wani son of Ghulam Muhammad wani resident of Redwani payeen was laid to rest at his ancestral village Redwani Payeen on Wednesday morning after he was killed in an encounter in forests of Pehlipora larnoo kokernag area of South kashmirs Anantnag district.
Son of a government master, farhan aged 15 is second militant of this age who were killed from last 10 days after fardeen Ahmed Khanday of tral area, who was killed in lethpora fidayeen Attack.
Father of Farhan, Ghulam Muhammad wani said that farhan was religous boy since his childhood and was never missing any namaz(Prayers) from age of 6. He was very efficient boy and was never resisting for anything whatever I was asking him
He secured about 96% marks in 10th class board examination after which he opted for Medical + Math stream and was going regularly for coaching clashes for five subjects namely Mathematics, Physics Chemistry, Zoology and Botony.
He added that On 17th Ramadan( 13 June 2017) youm e badr (the day which is related with battle of badr) he went for his coaching classes and never came back.
We filed two missing reports and searched him everywhere but to no avail and on 6 July we came to know through security forces that farhan has joined militant ranks, his father added.
However it is believed that he picked up arms on 13 June, when he along with another boy of the Khudwani area on tips of militants snatched arms from the security guards deployed in the house of justice Muzafar Attar in sarnal area Anantnag district and joined hizbul Mujahideen.
Moreover it is believed he was knowing all ways of Sarnal area that is why he was chosen for the task of snatching arms from the area as he was student of EFF EMM school KP road and house of justice Attar is not far from it.
His father says security forces were repeatedly asking me to bring him back however farhan never came back since joining.
Yes my Facebook post urging Farhan to come back went viral that was our love and affection to our child that we were requesting him to come back but I was knowing that he has chosen a right path and he won't come again, he added.
We were never threatened or by security forces after farhan joined militant ranks.
Farhan has now his parents and one brother namely Burhanudin wani who has given 12th class exams and results are yet to be declared, moreover he has one married sister namely Munaza wani.
Moreover despite restrictions thousands of people including women and children participated in last rites of slain farhan.
People from different areas of South kashmir flocked to Redwani area while raising high pitched Pro militant, Pro Islam and Pro militant slogans.
Finally farhan was laid to rest after multiple funeral prayers at his ancestral graveyard in Redwani Payeen amid anti India slogans.
Since yesterday thousands of people reached the house of hizb militant to pay homepage to the slain militant, which continues today as well.
A Militant identified as Mohd Furhan Wani s/o Gh Mohd Wani has been killed in the Kokernag Encounter in Islamabad
Farhan a resident of resident of Wangund, Khudwani was Active since 13 Jun 17.
A Gunfight had started in Pahlipora, Larnoo area of Kokernag in Southern Kashmir on Tuesday morning between Militants and Government forces.
Official sources told The Kashmiriyat that a search operation had been launched by Government forces including 19RR of Indian Army in the area when militants fired on the army party triggering an encounter.
Larnoo, 20 Kilometers away from Islamabad Main Township has been sealed by the Government forces following the encounter.
Local sources told The Kashmiriyat that at least 3-4 Militants are trapped in the area and all of them are likely locals.
Initial reports suggest that Ashraf Khan, the District commander of Hizb for Islamabad (Anantnag) District is trapped along with two militants.
Ashraf Khan who is a resident of Tangpawa village in Kokernag is one of the oldest surviving militants in the Kashmir valley and is currently serving as the District commander of Militant outfit, Hizb Ul Mujahideen for Islamabad ( Anantnag ).
In the past few months, massive Cordon And Search operations have been launched to trap the militant commander who as per sources was a close associate of popular LeT commander, Bashir Lashkar.
A Heavy exchange of fire was going on when this report was being filed.
9: 30 am: The Army has sealed the entry and the exit points to the village.
9:46: More troopers from 156BN of CRPF and SOG of Jammu Kashmir Police are being rushed to the encounter site.
10:10: Mobile Internet Services have been suspended in Islamabad & Kulgam.
10: 17: The Militants reportedly have escaped to the nearby forest area, however the forces are following them in there, Ashraf Khan is believed to be injured.
10: 26: Mohd Furhan Wani s/o Gh Mohd Wani has been killed so far.
10:39: The Government forces have intensified the search operations as militants are believed to be injured and trapped there.
11:00: Choppers have been pushed into service to find the militants reportedly hiding in the nearby forest.
11:20: Another militant has been killed, however his identity has not been confirmed as of yet.
“I'm not a pacifist by any stretch of the imagination, but the older I've gotten the less I understand the political end of war. I would love to see a day when all those men in national capitals decide they want to go to war for nebulous reasons and the common men and scientists and engineers refuse to go. If it's that important, let those men in parliaments fight it out”
To Find True Political conviction, beliefs that move humans, they must be tested, lived, embodied just as a suicide bomber, horribly embodies theirs. The RSS abides by its truth while the Anti RSS stick to their own truth and ears have ceased to exist. It is necessary to confront a painful abandonment. It is confronting to believe that the Governments can provide for us and protect us. Government wants us to believe it and we want to believe them. They want us to believe our country, that they rule is the preeminent and we are the unique creatures, the finely carved ones, and the best of them all. Unfortunately, it is ever more evident that this comfortable pact between us rests upon weak foundations indeed.
The unending tussle between the elected Representatives and various stakeholders whose ideology is not accommodated by the popular Governments ultimately leads us into a state of Anarchy. The genocide in the Syrian Nation since 2011 is a failed attempt of President Bashar Al Assad terribly falling short of boarding all stake holders. The appalling tussle leads to an intense genocide of civilians. The curious cases of Baltimore and Ferguson inside the mainland of the United States, again is a failed attempt of the popular governments to connect with the stakeholders, the public opinion. Mostly the elected Governments use military might to crush the rights of these stakeholders, the public. Elsewhere, wealthy philanthropists, Political industrialists, eminent journalists use their financial pull and foundations to promote the political interests of the Governments or to launder the public rights and in many nations they keep the public engaged on Televisions and Linking Adhaar Cards (Read Keeping a vigil on citizens), Ration Cards, Pan cards, Clean and Make Campaigns, Tax Reforms. It is not only big business that engages in lobbying business to complete in the jammed and dissonant legislatures of the modern halls of modern “democratic” legislatures anyone with axe to follow the same tactics of laundering public funds and paying the same to the Governments we elect.
There may be a twist in the traditional understanding of the programs put forth. “The Government of India has spent only 94 crore only on radio, Print and Television ads to promote the ‘CLEAN-INDIA campaign’, This activities may glitter beneficial, but they all share one common characteristic throughout the globe, No accountability to the stakeholders. In a “democratic” setup, the accord between the citizen and the Government is never clear. You can never spend an entire life obeying orders and laws, paying taxes, without once being asked whether you wish to sign the accord or stay out of it. The Elected Government insists to be informed on your birth and intimated about your death. And at no point does it seek your consent or a continual feedback about its working or your life which democratic setup provides space for, at least in theory.
The media too is an enterprise with a few men to rule it and influence the public opinion and notion it in a harmless “productive” conduct. The “rape” of a doctor makes a hue and cry, an entire nation roars on the streets, the same people dastardly rest in their bedrooms expressing anguish and anger watching the news of the same happening with a girl from a remote area who comes from a different class of people, on the elite media. “Save Tigers” campaign garnered a colossal support, farmers committing suicide is often concealed. Sometimes substantial truth which may lead to critics against fanatic traditionalism are concealed, the facts may also evoke anger and lead to an outstretched public outrage or an enlightened public opinion.
The people in power however are the master funders to the news enterprises in the form of advertisements. The elite capitalist hierarchy tries to maintain its hegemony over the other “middle class and the poor class” of the society to shape the progressive society or the society towards “progress”. The progress though exaggerates the fissures between classes of rich and poor.
“Ballot is the only answer”