Kashmir not part of India: Arundhati Roy

Srinagar: Noted Indian author, Arundhati Roy has reiterated that Jammu and Kashmir is not an integral part of India.

According to Kashmir Media Service, addressing a seminar organised by the Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS) in Srinagar, Arundhati Roy said, “I believe Kashmir is not an integral part of India. It is a historical fact. By describing the pro-freedom leaders in the Valley as separatists, India in a sense has already acknowledged that secession has taken place.”

Arundhati Roy, who has been vociferously advocating the cause of Kashmiris, minced no words in stating that India had launched a protracted war to suppress the ongoing movement in occupied Kashmir by its military might. She maintained that the ongoing movement had highlighted the aspirations of the Kashmiris. However, she added that it was high time for the Kashmiri people to set goals for Azadi and achieve them systematically. She cautioned that there was an elite section in the occupied territory, which was allowing the oppression. She also hailed the role of Kashmiri women in the ongoing

Prominent human rights activist of India, Gautam Navlakha, said, it is the Kashmiris who have to decide their future. He said that there had been criminalization of dissent as all voice in Kashmir had been suppressed.

Prominent filmmaker, Sanjay Kak said that it was right time for Kashmiris to push the curtains on their victim hood. He pointed out that the perception of majority of Indians was changing towards Kashmir issue due to peaceful protests in the territory.

Pervez Imroz, the Chairman of JKCCS, said that the civil society had an important role to shape up the opinions in Kashmir. “At a time when seven lakh troopers besides cops are leaving no stone unturned to suppress the movement, it is the responsibility of the civil society to give vent to aspirations of Kashmiris,” he said. Imroz said that the Government of India was holding the media hostage and spreading misinformation about Kashmir, adding, “Many NGOs have been formulated who portray false picture of Kashmir.”

Other speakers included Najeeb Mubarki, the Assistant Editor of the Economic Times, Pervez Bukhari, a renowned journalist, Ashim Roy, noted Trade Union leader, and Zahir-ud-Din, senior journalist.

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