Hundreds of peaceful protestors converged on JFK Memorial in Dallas last Saturday to denounce the Indian annexation of Kashmir and urge US Congress and world leaders to reject New Delhi’s illegal action.
For 72 years, the people of Kashmir have asked for a referendum to decide the status of their land, but India has refused to allow such a vote. Instead, Articles 370 and 35A of the Indian constitution gave Kashmir a special status allowing it limited autonomy, job preference and land preservation. The Hindu nationalist Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, direct federal government rule. Since then, the people of Kashmir have been under lock down. India has cut most of the phone and internet services in the area and put Kashmiri leaders under house arrest.
With tens of thousands of heavily armed Indian troops enforcing a debilitating curfew, the Kashmiris are faced with food shortages and threat of violence. India and a section of the Indian media are painting a rosy picture of the situation in Kashmir but a fact-finding team reported that the resentment against Indian decision is running high. According to activists who managed to visit Kashmir under severe restrictions, the troops have detained children as young as 11.