Kashmir, Ather Zia, Critical Kashmir Studies, Srinagar, postbox, graffiti, resistance, Anthropology of Policy, Instagram

This postbox hangs on a lamppost in the historic downtown Srinagar. The neglect, ruination of its pockmarked body tells tales of young men’s ire when they take to roads fighting pitched stone battles with the Indian troops. Poet Agha Shahid Ali famously titled his poetry collection “The country without a post-office.” His poems revealed the pathos of Kashmir, the brutal repression that India unleashed in the wake of the armed struggle. Agha Shahid has passed away and its almost 20 years since the book was released – but Kashmir has not moved an inch. Not from its demands of freedom and self-determination, nor from recharging their movement for liberation. These days Kashmir is in the 34th day of a fresh uprising. Demonstration and protests are erupting everywhere. This after a young militant leader was killed in July. Youth are fighting street battles with the Indian troops. India has responded with brutal force that has killed over 60, blinded more than 150 and over 4000 are maimed and wounded. Curfew is on; phones and Internet are blocked. No news is coming out of Kashmir; indeed, it is a country without a post-office. Even though Kashmir is being silenced it is clear it is not silent. – Ather Zia

Image (c) Ather Zia 2016. Originally posted on ASAP Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/p/BJF4udRBE-w/?taken-by=anthofpolicy

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