The Kashmir Walla in 2013


The Kashmir Walla

This year, The Kashmir Walla, will complete three years of its journey. With a small team, we took a step of going beyond the established dominating mass-media structures and to make it a reality – that there can be a new face of journalism. Our presence, in this corporate dominated fabric of journalism, and the impact it created in all these years is testament to what independent journalism aspires. Below, we bring you some of the stories from 2013.


“Roller over legs, dipped in chilli-water, forced to drink acid”

By Muheet ul Islam

“In the beginning they kept me naked in an aloof room for several days to raise a level of fear about torture. Then they took me to a torture room and tied my hands to ceiling and began to beat ruthlessly with bamboo sticks and leather belts for half an hour,” Rehman recalls. Read full story

I’m a house and my name is….

By Siddhartha Gigoo & Muhabit ul Haq

Grandfather has grown weary. He sits in his room and looks at the walnut tree from the window. Soon, the kids will climb on it and pluck walnuts. They will smash some on the walls. Father will finish his work and look at me before retiring to bed. Read full story

Afghanistan, my motherland

By Helena Derwash

Afghanistan has most definitely experienced the most hardship of any country in the world, successively for decades. The geographic location of this nation has seen every empire try and conquer it using it for a trade route, from Alexander the Great to Genghis Khan, there is no empire that has not left its mark upon this land. Read full story

Of peace and propaganda

By Nigel Britto

Propaganda. By the end of this week, we’ll get a taste of it, too. On September 7, Zubin Mehta will lead the Bavarian State Orchestra in Srinagar, summer capital of Indian-occupied Kashmir. Called ‘Ehsaas-e-Kashmir’, the Bombay-born conductor will direct what German ambassador Michael Steiner called ‘one of the world’s best orchestras’. Read full story

From Kashmir to Manhattan

By Momin Javed

The life of a young boy from Kashmir to the United States. Read full story

Inside the Grand Mufti’s self styled Supreme Court

By Fahad Shah

In the Indian-controlled Jammu and Kashmir, despite the fact there is no legal basis and neither the public or religious scholars have elected him, “Grand Mufti” Bashir-ud-Din has been running a self-styled parallel judicial system, calling it the “Supreme Court of Islamic Shariet (Central Dar ul Futwa).” For decades he has been giving diktats from his court and has used it for his personal interests to raise huge funds, solve land disputes, demand money for fatwas, and also to threaten people or force them to do his work. Read full story

Psychological impact on Kashmir’s youth

By Ufra Mir

The Kashmir conflict has shaped the unconscious psychology of the entire Indian-administered-Kashmiri population. It imposes an important question of how the current political situation in the valley has and is psychologically affecting the youth, causing many mental health problems. Accordingly, it’s the Kashmiri youth that is most affected currently since they are unable to make peace between the violent past and unstable present. Read full story

Tear gas in Kashmir: Not only for tears, corpses too

By Umer Beigh

During the recent uprisings in the valley of Kashmir, one of the major tools used by the Jammu and Kashmir police and the Indian Paramilitary forces has been the tear gas shell. The tear gas shell is not an alien instrument: it has been used freely on peaceful protesters as well as stone throwers. There have been a large number of civilian killings, mostly teenagers, due to the tear gas shells. Read full story


After criticism, Kashmir’s girls’ rock band quits

By Fahad Shah

In Kashmir- a disputed region, the first girls’ rock band performed in public during a “Battle of Bands”, in the capital city Srinagar, on December 22, 2012- hosting different local bands. Two days after the performance, the band members started receiving threats and abuses on social networking sites. Read full story

Irom Sharmila: Not suicide, it’s fight

By Kalpana Singh

Manipur is the land of Khamba Thoibi, Iromba and Thang-Ta. It is arguably, the most culturally rich state in Northeast India. But, ask some one from mainland India about Manipur and they will be quick to retort with bomb blasts, bandhs, Armed Forces Special Powers Act (henceforth referred to as AFSPA) and Irom Sharmila. Read full story

Kashmir’s women in radio broadcasting

By Saba Firdous

Despite living under hardships in Kashmir- which is engulfed in the conflict for decades now, women have made their name in the radio. Initially, it was difficult for any girl or woman to enter any media channel. They were looked down upon as inferiors due to which very few females came forward to contribute to this field of media. Read full story


My father is a martyr, not a terrorist

By Fahad Shah

He steps in the room and looks around. This was his father’s room. Calm and composed, thirteen-year-old Ghalib Guru, the only son of Mohammad Afzal Guru, says he is proud of his father for sacrificing his life for Kashmir like Bhagat Singh did for India. Read full story

My patriarchy better than yours!

By Amrita Ghosh

To my women readers: can we think of a time and space when we have not thought of ourselves as a woman, and the cultural discourse it has been embedded with? Is it really possible to think of ourselves beyond the ‘gendered’ classification?  Read full story

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