Interviews

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A parcel bomb blast in Srinagar office of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) changed the life of its then correspondent, Yusuf Jameel. He still sits in the same office but never dares to sit in the same room where he lost his friend in the blast. Jameel was born in 1958, started his career as a writer when he was in college. He used to write for his college magazine Aabshaar (in Urdu), of which he later became an editor. He was a regular contributor to Khaleej Times, Blitz (Bombay) and Munsif (Hyderabad) before joining a local daily Aftaab as

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Kashmiri Women offering prayers. Kashmiri woman has long been portrayed as a mute spectator of all that has happened and is happening. Considered to be bystanders in the politics of Kashmir, these women have hardly been heard. Their views and choices have long been neglected by those who claim to cover Kashmir. The only time Kashmiri woman get chance to speak is when her family is a victim of some tragedy. Victims of a long conflict, this is how most of the media outlets depict Kashmiri woman. The politics and visions of a Kashmiri woman hardly get space. But Kashmir,

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The revolutionary rapper from Kashmir, Roushan Illahi aka MC Kash who sings rap songs, mostly related to Kashmir conflict, says, “I took up to something that I couldn’t just leave on the shelf. I couldn’t let my feelings rot. I had to record no matter what. So, they won’t let me record? It’s cool. I will come back tomorrow.” Roushan received international attention during the 2010 Kashmir unrest, when 115 protestors including several teenagers, were killed in police and paramilitary action. He released a song called I Protest (Remembrance), which he says was inspired by “Too many, sixty five of

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In an interview with Fazil Qayoom, Sheikh Fayaz – one of the pioneers of Valley’s Chakkri singers, talks about this traditional melodic folk song of Kashmir and also makes some proposals for regaining the lost glory of the Chakkri. Sheikh Fayaz FQ: What makes the Chakkri distinct from the other forms of Kashmiri music? SF: The Chakkri depicts the melodic tradition of folk music that evolved in the Kashmir Valley many decades back. It truly upholds the cultural heritage of Kashmir. Earlier these songs used to be sung only at nights during marriage ceremonies but now we perform it on

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By Fahad Shah & Sheikh Saleem He is a human rights lawyer and a civil rights activist. He graduated in Science from Srinagar in the year 1972 and then got his LLB degree at the Law College Aligarh Muslim University in 1975. Imroz joined the Jammu and Kashmir High Court as a lawyer in 1978. Since the end of the eighties, he has initiated and led campaigns for human rights in a context of grave violations, including killings, tortures and rapes, or forced “disappearances” with impunity. He is founder and President of the Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society

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By Heena Kausar Bikramjeet Batra, Amnesty International’s India Campaigner- Asia Pacific Programme Recently, the Jammu and Kashmir State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) released a report Inquiry Report of Unmarked Graves in North Kashmir wherein they have confirmed presence of 2156 unidentified graves at 38 sites in North Kashmir. On 16 September 2011, the SHRC directed that the bodies should be identified using all available means and techniques including DNA profiling, dental examination and other forensic pathology techniques. However nothing concrete has been delivered yet. On 26 September Amnesty International gave an open letter to all members of the legislative assembly

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Siddhartha Gigoo For a Kashmiri Pandit life changed when the armed rebellion started in Kashmir Valley in late 80s. The community migrated to Jammu – outside Kashmir Valley in a matter of few days. Some of them settled in different parts of India and some left India to live in other countries. Some lived in make-shift camps, now living in government allotted flats at Jagti, Nagrota. How they lived since their migration and what they went through is their story which started after 90s. One of them is Sidhartha Giggoo, who was a teenager at that time. He too like

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Interviewed by Fahad Shah On June 9, this year a local newspaper here came up with a story “Palhallan teenage girl turns novelist”. The girl is from Palhallan, Pattan— 17 miles from Srinagar. Sixteen year old Ruqaiya Shabir Tantray is a Kashmiri, now settled in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. She published her first novel  “Magical Moonbeams” in May this year. The novel is published by “Arqam Afaq” publishers Lahore. The novel attracted a good readership from teenagers mostly. Born on July 17, 1994 at Palhallan, Pattan, Ruqayia relocated in Pakistani city Rawalpindi at the age of four to live with her father,

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This is edited transcript of an interview with Agha Shahid Ali by Suvir Kaul, recorded at the Mass Communications Research Center, Jamia Milia Islamia, New Delhi in August 1997.  Suvir Kaul           Would you like to talk about your professional life in the US? What encourages you to keep writing? Agha Shahid Ali          I am a Professor of English and a creative writer at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and I am Director of the Program in Creative Writing there. These institutions support writers. They reward you for publishing what you would be publishing anyway. Kaul             In one

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Interviewed by Fahad Shah The Communist Party of India (Marxist) has its one legislative representation in Jammu and Kashmir state legislature. Muhammad Yusuf Tarigami, from the Kulgam constituency of South Kashmir, won the seat bagging 81, 000 votes (34 percent), defeating 17 other candidates. He supports maximum autonomy for Jammu and Kashmir and regional autonomy for the region. He believes that the ongoing protests in Valley resulted from a deep alienation caused by the erosion of special constitutional guarantees for the state. Muhammad Yusuf Tarigami How did you land in politics? I am from a village Tarigam, in Kulgam (South

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