Binoo Joshi

Much more alarming than the loss of studies of students  during the ogling unrest is the pernicious narrative  suggesting that  any talk of opening of schools or regular education is  nothing short of being a renegade to the  cause for which the Valley residents are fighting for.

The narrators have summed up that Kashmir was witnessing worst kind of brutalities, much more serious and dangerous than Jews did  at the hand of Nazis in Germany and elsewhere . This preposterous line of argument , twisting the realities , poses a grave danger to Kashmiri society in the future. It is so because, this is  being peddled by  the so-called high class people who have held very important positions, and who are supposed to be the enlightened minds.

Enlightened intellectuals and civil society leaders have   a greater responsibility to present a realistic picture and show a way out of the crisis. But when such  people join the chorus  of stone throwing protestors or  follow the agenda of illiterate drug addicts on the street corners , then  it becomes a serious  issue to be pondered over.

At the moment , Kashmir is passing through a very tough phase. In the past more than 100 days of protests, curfews, shutdowns injected by the armed militants , this “paradise on earth”  has added  many dark chapters to its history .  Burhan Wani was not the  first or the last militant to be killed in an encounter . He was an icon of social media. He had  a   wide range of appeal among  teenagers , most  of whom are addicted to smart phones and vulnerable to what is broadcast on  this second- to second refreshed media.



But the way the violence erupted following the July 8th killing of Burhan  across South Kashmir before spreading to other parts of the Valley in equal, if not more, intensity , suggested that  the plans to burn Kashmir were already in place. The local narrative joined by the all-time mischief making potential made it  highly combustible .

What has happened in   the past more than 100 days cannot be  a victory of any sort .  It is defeat for all. It was shocking to  hear Mirwaiz Umar Farooq , Chairman of the  Hurriyat Conference to  claim that this  tragic mile stone of 100 days of shutdowns, 90 deaths, hundreds blinded and thousands injured was a “ moral victory .”  His justification : the Kashmiri people have shown that they have  both the  potential of resistance and resilience  to  fight for their “ right to self determination.”

That schools were closed throughout this agitation, and there are not even feeble signs of  their re-opening in the near future unless the separatists shut their protest calendar all at once and stone throwers retreat to their homes .  Paradoxically, it also is a fact that with several hundred behind bars ,  an uneasiness  dawns automatically. How can the  schools open in these circumstances. It is a fair point. But , the question is that those in jails  are a threat to peace or their release will  be some kind of repentance on their part . It is too difficult to answer. It is a double-edged situation .  But what abut the psyche of the children who have lost   their studies and view attending schools as a dent to the resistance . Where do we go from here?