Tag Archives: India&#39s

In Kashmir's main city, only a few celebrate India's Independence Day

In Kashmir's main city, only a few celebrate India's Independence DayIndia tightened security on Thursday in disputed Kashmir, sealing off many roads with barbed wire in the main city of Srinagar, as government officials and security forces held an Independence Day parade attended by only a few local people. Streets were empty outside the Sher-i-Kashmir cricket stadium, where the event was held, with most residents of the city keeping indoors as a travel and communications blockade in Indian-controlled Kashmir entered its 11th day. India’s crackdown followed a decision to strip the mainly Muslim state of Jammu and Kashmir of the right to set some of its own laws, a move that has prompted sporadic protests in the past week.



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Some signs of normality return to Kashmir, but India's clampdown still strict

Some signs of normality return to Kashmir, but India's clampdown still strictFor the first time in six days, India eased travel restrictions in some parts of Srinagar on Saturday, and people flooded the streets of Kashmir’s summer capital to buy provisions ahead of the Muslim festival of Eid-al-Adha on Monday. Seeking to tighten its grip on the region also claimed by neighbouring Pakistan, New Delhi on Monday scrapped the state’s right to frame its own laws and allowed non-residents to buy property there. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government also locked down the revolt-torn region, cutting off communications, detaining more than 500 political leaders and activists, and putting a ‘virtual curfew’ into force with numerous police and army roadblocks stopping movement by many residents.



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Roadmap for India's troubled Kashmir under its new status

Roadmap for India's troubled Kashmir under its new statusIndian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has promised early elections for the Indian-controlled portion of Kashmir days after stripping the Muslim-majority region of statehood and turning it into a federally administered territory. Under its new status, the territory will have an elected assembly but will function under the control of the federal government in New Delhi. The constitutional changes also eliminate Kashmir’s right to its own constitution, limit its decision-making power and allow non-Kashmiri Indians to settle there.



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India's splitting of Kashmir opposed in Muslim border city

India's splitting of Kashmir opposed in Muslim border cityIndia’s surprise move to carve out sparsely populated Ladakh from the state of Jammu and Kashmir to make it a territory directly controlled by New Delhi has been met with protests in Kargil, a Muslim-majority border city in Ladakh that identifies culturally with Kashmir, suggesting that the Hindu nationalist-led government’s plan to redraw the country’s political map will be far from easy. While some Ladakhi lawmakers from Leh, the main city in the heavily Buddhist region with historic ties to Tibet, hailed the move as a long-overdue response to their requests for separation from restive Kashmir, organizations in Kargil condemned the decision. Mountainous Jammu and Kashmir comprises three regions: Hindu-majority Jammu, Muslim-majority Kashmir, and heavily Buddhist Ladakh.



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India's Modi defends powderkeg Kashmir move

India's Modi defends powderkeg Kashmir moveModi’s Hindu-nationalist government imposed direct rule on the Indian held portion of Kashmir on Monday, setting off a new crisis in one of the world’s most volatile security flashpoints. Speaking for the first time since the move, and with the people of Kashmir enduring a military lockdown, Modi hailed it as a “historic decision” that would bring peace to the region. “Friends, I have full belief that we will be able to free Jammu and Kashmir from terrorism and separatism under this system,” Modi said in a televised address.



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India's Ladakh Buddhist enclave jubilant at new status but China angered

India's Ladakh Buddhist enclave jubilant at new status but China angeredThe Buddhist enclave of Ladakh cheered India’s move to hive it off from Jammu and Kashmir state, a change that could spur tourism and help New Delhi counter China’s influence in the contested western Himalayas. Beijing, though, criticised the announcement, made on Monday by the Indian government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi as part of a wider policy shift that also ended Jammu and Kashmir’s right to set its own laws.



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Analysis: How India's actions in Kashmir could spark a new war with Pakistan

Analysis: How India's actions in Kashmir could spark a new war with PakistanDays after Donald Trump offered to bring his dealmaking skills to bear on India and Pakistan's seemingly intractable Kashmir dispute, Narendra Modi has dramatically shaken up the pieces of the puzzle. The Indian prime minister's sudden move to revoke Indian-administered Kashmir's special status may have been in his manifesto for two elections, but it has caused domestic and international shock nonetheless. Abolishing the region's autonomy by revoking article 370, and thus paving the way for Hindu migrants to buy land and take jobs in the Muslim majority area, increases Mr Modi's standing as a populist strongman. But it will perhaps irrevocably damage Delhi's relations with the residents of Kashmir, stoking militant violence in a region long known as a jihadist hotspot. And it also risks destablising a frozen conflict which has brought India and Pakistan to war three times.  A woman carries her child as she walks past Indian security personne during curfew like restrictions in Jammu, India, Monday, Aug. 5, 2019 Credit: AP “The revocation of article 370 is a major tipping point for an already-fraught dispute. It’s hard to overstate the magnitude of this move,” said Michael Kugelman, deputy director of the Asia Program at the Washington-based The Wilson Centre. Kashmir is at the heart of hostility between India and Pakistan, with the territory effectively partitioned between them. On the Pakistani side, condemnation of India's presence in Kashmir and its abuses against residents is an emotive cross-party issue. While the government issued a brusque denunciation, elsewhere the rhetoric was more bellicose. The president of  Pakistan-controlled Kashmir warned that the two countries could "go to war". Saifullah Niazi, a close aide to prime minister Imran Khan said India had “ pushed the whole region towards an unending conflict. The conflict has consumed generations over the past 70 years and will further escalate to new heights,” he said. Tensions had already been high between the nuclear armed neighbours after February's suicide bomb that killed 40 paramilitary police in Pulwama. India blamed Pakistan-based militants and launched retaliatory air strikes. In such circumstances, hopes of reconciliation seem remote, even with Mr Trump's help. India has always rejected calls for outside mediation anyway, saying Kashmir is a bilateral issue to be sorted out between the neighbours. Politicians in Mr Modi's ruling BJP party argue that Kashmir's special status has made it difficult to integrate the region with the rest of the country and has therefore held back development. The issue is an internal administrative matter they claim. But the ramifications are unlikely to be contained locally, with dangerous consequences once again for the whole region.



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India's top court to hear Ayodhya religious dispute on daily basis

India's top court to hear Ayodhya religious dispute on daily basisIndia’s top court will hear arguments every day in an effort to resolve a decades-old dispute over what should be built on the ruins of a 16th-century mosque, Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said on Friday. The move strengthens hopes for eventual resolution of a quarrel at the center of fraught ties between India’s majority Hindus and its Muslim community, which accounts for 14% of a population of 1.3 billion. Many devout Hindus believe the site in Ayodhya, in India’s most populous state of Uttar Pradesh, to be the birthplace of one of their most revered deities, the Lord Ram.



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Meet India's BrahMos II: The World's Fastest Supersonic Cruise Missile?

Meet India's BrahMos II: The World's Fastest Supersonic Cruise Missile?With the BrahMos II venture put on indefinite hold, the Indian military is forging ahead with  new, long-range and deep-dive versions of their BrahMos supersonic cruise missile.Earlier this week, BrahMos CEO Sudhir Kumar Mishra announced that vertical deep-dive and 500 kilometer-range BrahMos variants are ready to enter India’s missile arsenal: "India has successfully test-fired a vertical deep dive version of BrahMos, the world's fastest supersonic cruise missile, that can now change the dynamics of conventional warfare…the upgraded version of the missile with enhanced range of up to 500 km is also ready.” Both of these new variants will feature the Mach 2.8 speed of the original BrahMos missile, roughly three times the speed of sound.As the name implies, vertical deep-capability allows the missile to be fired at a “near-vertical” trajectory of 90 degree, climbing fourteen 14 kilometers before making making a steep dive toward its target. Mishra asserts that this will make BrahMos more effective on mountainous terrain and against bunkers as well as large surface vessels, suggesting that these improvements are aimed at bolstering Indian missile strike capability vis-à-vis China amid ongoing tensions over the Tibet region.



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India's Modi launches election blitz, trumpets space feat

India's Modi launches election blitz, trumpets space featIndia’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi embarked on a campaign blitz Thursday with three huge rallies where he declared voters would reward his decision to test new weapons and bomb Pakistan with a thumping election victory. The Hindu nationalist leader addressed tens of thousands of supporters in three northern cities in his first official campaign events since the announcement of the election earlier this month. Modi, 68, hit the hustings a day after India destroyed a low-orbiting satellite using a ballistic missile — a military feat only equalled by China, Russia and the United States.



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