Friday, December 2, 2022

Taliban has embarked on Pakistani project on Kashmir

By Arun Joshi

The Taliban has spoken of Kashmir and pledged to raise its voice for “Muslims in Kashmir”. These words have the potential to boost the Taliban-type thinking in the younger generation in the Valley, that’s the real danger even when it is almost impossible for the Taliban to direct its fighters toward Kashmir because of its own internal condition and the quest for recognition by the international community. But the psychological impact of these statements cannot be undermined, especially when Pakistan has made an issue about the death and the quiet burial of the senior-most separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani and blamed Delhi for all this.

These were the most feared words that Delhi had been hoping the Taliban would not speak because, for long,  the impact of the Taliban victory in Afghanistan on  Kashmir was in security and political discourse.  Now when the Taliban has stated that it would raise its voice for the Muslims in Kashmir., it is rife with several connotations and all of which, individually and collectively, have the potential to leave a psychological imprint on the minds of the people in the Valley who have witnessed the armed militancy for the past over three decades and watched the  Afghan developments quite closely.

In an interview with BBC, the Taliban spokesperson of political office in Qatar  Suhail Shaheen said “ We have this right, being Muslims, to raise our voice for Muslims in  Kashmir, India and any other country.” Alongside he made another comment: We will raise our voice and say that Muslims are your own people, your own citizens. They are entitled to equal rights under your laws.”

What do these words imply? That there is something that Kashmiri Muslims want to say, and for which Taliban has lent them a sense of Muslim solidarity to amplify the same.

There are other connotations as well; the Taliban would not stay silent over whatever the Muslims in the Valley want. The problem with these remarks, as is also with that of Pakistan, is that this is not the holistic view of the Muslim community in Kashmir. A majority of the population in Kashmir is sick of violence and wants to live in peace and progress with the times in lockstep with the world. They are aware that what dark face the Taliban represents and want to avoid, rather hate, the ways with which Taliban is curbing the rights of the women in Afghanistan. They detest Taliban and its violent means, but there are few sections that have drawn vicarious pleasure out of the Taliban victory in Afghanistan.

The Taliban has used  Pakistani vocabulary on this issue. Pakistan speaks of the Muslims as victims of the Indian system. It has ratcheted up this rhetoric in the aftermath of August 5, 2019  decisions when the Government of India removed Article 370 and Article 35 A, which provided special status and exclusive privileges to the permanent residents of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir that now stands divided into two federally administered union territories of Ladakh and J&K.

Because of the mid-August developments in Afghanistan, when Taliban took over the control of the country with the fall of Kabul on August 15, the Taliban is seen as a potent force that can make the superpowers to flee.  Few sections of Kashmiri Muslims have rejoiced the Taliban victory on social media.

One of the major mainstream leaders and former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti had asked  Delhi to draw necessary lessons from what happened in Afghanistan where a superpower like America was made to quit the land. Her pela was that if the Government of  India doesn’t initiate dialogue with the stakeholders in Kashmir in time, then it might run out of time, the consequences of which would not wait to visit it.

Hers was a sober suggestion, but the volatility of the younger minds is more troubling. They have different perceptions about the Taliban. They see macho image of the Taliban fighters and have drawn comparison between their situation and that of Afghanistan. These comparisons are far from reality, but the teenage psychology is not bound by the rationality and reality. It transcends all these barriers. The reality is that these are the young men who are sustaining whatever remains of militancy in Kashmir.

The younger generation in Kashmir is well versed with the international affairs, for they have learned lessons about the conflict situation in their own homes, neighbhourhood and they have connected the presence of troops and their own militancy with that of the Palestine. Now, they see Taliban as new symbols of successful insurgency.  They have lost the distinction between terrorism and the insurgency , nor they care about what is being done for them by the Government. The aspirational class among Kashmiri youth and children often get overwhelmed by the new narratives and the situations that emerge in the world.

With the Taliban having said what it has stated about Kashmir, there is an urgent need to neutralize Taliban influence, which is more psychological in nature than physical. There is no doubt that there are some who are enamoured of Taliban in Kashmir.

This should be a matter of concern if  Taliban narrative builds up in Kashmir, it would be setting a new ground for the resistance in the Valley, which may not be visible as of today, but it has the potential to impact tomorrow of Kashmir.

About the Author:

Arun Joshi is a senior journalist based in J&K. He has worked with Hindustan Times, Times of India, Indian Express, and The Tribune. He has authored “ Eyewitness Kashmir: Teetering on Nuclear War” and three other books.


This is the personal opinion of the author. The views expressed in this write up have nothing to do with it.

Related Articles

Apple ‘Never Considered’ Removing Twitter, Says Musk

San Francisco: After his meeting with Apple CEO Tim Cook, Twitter chief Elon Musk on Thursday said that they have “resolved” misunderstandings over the micro-blogging...

Meta Fires Staff For Hijacking Facebook, Instagram Accounts

San Francisco: Meta has reportedly fired or disciplined over two dozen employees for hijacking Facebook and Instagram accounts over the past year. According to The Wall...

Voting begins for 1st phase of Gujarat Assembly polls

Polling began at 8 am on Thursday for the first phase of Gujarat Assembly elections in 89 out of the total 182 seats across...

‘Korean’ woman YouTuber harassed on Mumbai street

A video has surfaced showing a woman YouTuber, reportedly from South Korea, being sexually harassed by a man on a street in Mumbai. Police on...

National Paintings Exhibition Modi @20 Concluded

Bhubaneswar, Dt: 25.11 (From Kishore Dwibedi): Prime Minister Narendra Modi is playing a decisive role in making India Self reliant and Super Power, observed...

YouTube starts beta testing quiz feature for community posts

San Francisco, : YouTube has started testing a new feature which will allow creators to add quizzes to their community posts. The new feature is in...

Odisha assembly winter session begins

Bhubaneswar, : The winter session of the Odisha assembly began today with a somber note as the House condoled the death of two former...

Oppn To Raise Archana Nag Case In Winter Session Of Odisha...

Bhubaneswar: Opposition parties BJP and Congress will rake up the Archana Nag honeytrap case to corner the ruling BJD during the winter session of Odisha...

OSSC to fill up 7540 posts of high school teachers

Bhubaneswar, : The Odisha Staff Selection Commission (OSSC) has invited applications for the post of Regular High School Teachers under Odisha School and Mass...

Bombing in Bhubaneswar, 2 youths hospitalized

Bhubaneswar, :  At least two youths have been critically injured in Bhubaneswar on Wednesday after a bomb was hurled at the duo. The incident took...

Australia Odia Samaj hosts Global Webinar on Mental Immunity

Canberra, : The audiences worldwide were completely moved and thoroughly overwhelmed by the divine discourse of renowned spiritual preacher Swami Mukundananda recently. Addressing the...

Odias in Netherlands Host Boat Sailing Ceremony

  Amsterdam(From Kishore Dwibedi) : Non Resident Odias settled in Netherlands hosted Fifth Kartik Purnima Celebrations and Boat Sailing Ceremony with much fanfare and religious...


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Stay Connected

- Advertisement -

Latest Articles

- Advertisement -