Siddhartha Deb: With Kashmir crisis, India reveals its democracy is a “sham”

Siddhartha Deb: With Kashmir crisis, India reveals its democracy is a “sham”


We’re talking about two nuclear rivals,
India and Pakistan, and the disputed region of Kashmir. If you can explain to this global audience
how high the stakes are now, why the Indian Prime Minister Modi has done this, and do
you see this as a possible flashpoint, with thousands more soldiers brought into this,
one of the most militarized areas of the world? Well, yes. I mean, I think it’s a kind of exercise
in completely authoritarian power. And I think there are two big questions here. What does it mean for Kashmiris? And I think both Sanjay Kak and Mirza Waheed
have given us some sense of that. But what it also means for India, in the sense
that parliamentary democracy is really a sham. That is what Modi and the BJP are revealing
again and again and again, that just by fear, they can sort of decide on something, on the
fate of a large group of people. Now, of course, which groups of people is
really important, and it’s not accidental. It is the fact that, you know, the target
is really Kashmiris, and Kashmiri Muslims in particular. And, you know, so this is basically Modi’s
way of distracting from the large-scale problems that continue to plague India under his rule, which includes the economic — economically,
India is doing badly. Environmentally, it’s a disaster. It is the heart of climate change. The Indian subcontinent is at the heart of
climate change, so, you know, with the kind of populations, with the kind of poverty. And there’s nothing that’s being done
about it. And instead, Modi is giving — Modi and the
BJP are giving the supporters something to feel triumphant about, by seeing the Kashmiris
basically being turned into prisoners in their own home. And this is a majority-Muslim population. It is. It is. But, you know, one of — it is. And it is obviously for the Hindu right BJP. This is the primary target of hatred, which
is not to say that they don’t hate others. They hate all minorities, all dissenters. And I think one of the big questions is not
only what does it mean for Kashmir, but that, you know, this could happen in India. Tomorrow Modi could decide to split another
Indian state into two. And, you know, again, this is completely — it’s
a kind of escalation of the kind of violence. And the Indian state is not benign and democratic,
you know, even without Modi and the BJP. But this is a kind of escalation of violence,
an escalation of exercise of power from Delhi. And it’s being done with the kind of short-term
gains in mind. There is no long-term view. For the poor in India, there has always been
this story that has been — this fake news produced by the BJP campaigning, that Kashmiri
Muslims get special privileges. And the very sort of raw example of this would
be a political street address that I heard in Kolkata in passing, many years ago, where
the BJP speaker was saying that, you know, Kashmiris get subsidized meat from the Indian
government for a price that you won’t even be able to buy dog meat in Kolkata. This is clearly directed at the large masses
of the Indian poor, that Kashmiris — and this is said of other groups, as well, including
Indian Muslims, as well — that they get special privileges. It’s similar to the “welfare queen”
comments that Americans make about its black minorities, that, you know, they get special
privileges. And it plays onto the same kind of majoritarianism,
same kind of sectarian nationalism. So, that’s one part of it. The other part of it is for the other part
of India’s BJP support, which is the sort of the more elite, the business crowd, and
it is that now you can go into Kashmir and buy land. You know, on social media, it has been — is
filled with Hindu right supporters of Modi saying, “We will now marry Kashmiri women.” And you can kind of see the settler-colonial,
racist, sexist sort of rhetoric at the heart of it. And so, the idea is that they can now purchase
land in Kashmir and basically turn it into an investment destination. So, that’s what Modi is doing. And so, in that sense, I think there is a
sense that, you know, we are going to let more Hindus move into Kashmir. I will just say one thing, though. Kashmir is not alone in this kind of protection
of land rights. This is common in many border parts of India
where there are minorities or indigenous people. This is true in many parts of the northeast,
including the state where I grew up, in Meghalaya, where the similar protection is in place that
you cannot buy land if you are not from the indigenous groups there, in order to protect
them from being swamped by much more — you know, people with much more access to capital,
essentially. So, it’s not — but the BJP, particularly
in the Hindu right, makes an issue out of it with regard to Kashmiri Muslims alone.

59 thoughts on “Siddhartha Deb: With Kashmir crisis, India reveals its democracy is a “sham”

  1. Rightly pointed out by Sidhartha. Its communal Hindu agenda and diversion from issues Modi is facing in 2nd term. Myopic on Unemployment in youths, farmers suicide, economic and environmental issues….It's short term gain and in long term its disaster.

  2. Two countries with nuclear weapons having an escalation of nuclear war while we are in the worst climate crisis in the history of Earth. Sounds we have a bright future ahead of us.

  3. The economy is going down. There are no jobs. Lawlessness and lynching everywhere. Communalism is on the rise. Hypernationalism is chewing up rationality. Rape and rampant misogyny. India is fucked. But the uneducated mass won't agree. They will continue to heil Modi and feel proud. I wonder how long this country will remain intact.

  4. We are not giving shit to u guys btw
    Current govt has the special majority in our parliament
    Majority is the key in democracy and they have the 2/3 majority so it is peoples mandate
    Do not sneak in our internal matter
    We are mature and responsible nation
    We are happy wid our govt
    No one is asking for ur certification or opinion 😉

  5. Lol whoever protests 370 just ask them what has 370 given to them? Child marriage? Triple Talaq? No voting rights who came from Pakistan after 1947? No property Rights for women after marriage?

    These morons will never tell you that article 370 didn't let Indian constitution to act on Kashmir which meant that fundamental rights were not given especially to women and it's restored. If restoring fundamental rights is against democracy then I'm with it.

  6. I just came back from occupied Kashmir and can tell you first hand that the Kashmiris are pissed at the Indian Modi government ….and mostly non-violent protests in the form of strikes. Modie in response is squeezing them even harder and flooding the area with armed soldiers, which now amounts to over 20% of the population, which uses 50% of the land for military purposes. I thought I would see the Himalayan mountains before they burn, but was rudely interrupted and told to leave because of the rotten Modi government crackdown.

  7. I came to make a comment on this dudes glasses lol way to big ! Lol looking so silly in the thumb nail hahahahhahahHhH Jesus

  8. what idiocy by this bald 👨‍🦲 man!! the process was entirely democratic in that supermajority existed. to the extent you have a beef with the process, it is with democracy. the comparison to black america is false and bogus because the american constitution makes african americans less than human – whereas the indian constitution gave kashmiris "special status." in otherwords, the kashmiris were more "special" than other indians this is not equality that is the cornerstone to the application of law to its citizens. what most people fail to address is the underlying unequal and unjust thought process of certain muslims that they are entitled to more than other citizens "because" they are muslims. it is this phony and bigoted ideology that is at the root of the kashmir and pakistan dynamic. call a spade a spade. pakistan tried this model. it is a failed state. now kashmir wants to follow in pakistan's footsteps. indians won't allow it.

    it is a new day in india 🇮🇳. A 70-year-old formula that never worked has been tossed into the dustbin of history where it belongs.get over it.

  9. liarliar mafiaDon&gopPricPence do the same by selling publicLands/nat'l.Parks or nativeReservations for oilBarons/minersProfits (Y)

  10. These leftist journalists r main enimies of India. Whole batch of leftist journalists emerged in 70s nd 80s paid by China. These idiots r now reporting 4 foreign media ND paying back to their Chinese masters.

  11. Being an author does not give someone any extra insights. For 70 years the Kashmiris have had social rights but have only gloried in that honour and did not capitalise on that extra blessing. This author too has indulged in the standard criticism of colonialist mentality of marrying Kashmir women. What twaddle!

  12. The far right trolls Modi employees will descend on this like flys on a carcass as they do with every video critical of their authoritarian government. Too bad you can’t just swat them like flys.

  13. He is an idiot knowing nothing from where you all gotthese jokers and bring them to talk about kashmir go and bring some expert idiots

  14. Me – sir dont you think that the democracy of KASHMIR is corrupt and sham?
    Sidd – what !! Why?
    Me – 1. a large amount of people are not allowed to vote.
    2. People like abdullas and muftis dont participate in panchayat elections.
    3. Seperatists are not stopped from giving hate speeches and promoting terrorism.
    4. Minorities are not allowed to stand in elections.
    Sidd – noooo it normal . It's not worth pointing out.
    Sidd – i will tell you what's sham.
    Me – yeah what's that?
    Sidd – India's democracy!
    Me – why?
    Sidd – modi
    Me – so what
    Sidd – he removed 370/35A
    Me – but he did with the support of most of the MP'S and even senior leaders of congress like Scindia and gowda and most of the OPPOSITION is supporting it he didn't just do it alone a bill requires the support of most of the MPs o ly then it is passed dont you know that?.
    Sidd – 🤔🤔 yeah whatever
    I am right
    No more questions.

  15. What did kashmir achieved with article 370 in 70 years
    These hypocrite loberals wont tell you about that
    Name of modi instills fear in them

  16. Thats barking dog Sidhart deb, how you become author, you are totally biased, this is your only buttering technique for your source of money,
    If you have knowledge then explain, why India is only country which have almost all types of practice of religion,
    And second thing what is the two nation theory,

  17. We Indian respect all religions because we thought all religions have different way but having same destination,
    If you don't have trust on me then please listen Vivekananda speech in Chicago that is available on you tube,

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