As the world remains consumed with containing the coronavirus pandemic and the severe economic fallout, India has spotted an opportunity for another round of repression against the population of Kashmir, which had already been reeling from the harsh aftereffects of last year’s six-month-long military lockdown.
By initiating gunfights with guerrilla fighters, jailing people for going to buy food and medicine, bringing charges against journalists, and beating doctors, paramedics and municipal workers, India is tightening its grip on Kashmir, seizing on pandemic measures to prevent a surge of resistance to its rule.
By changing the status, the Hindu right-wing government enabled Indian citizens to purchase property and settle down in the Himalayan region. The native inhabitants of Kashmir see an insidious plan in the annexation. They fear India seeks to alter the demographic makeup and turn Kashmir from being the Muslim-dominated state to the one where Hinduism could become the predominant faith