Nothing unusual has happened in Handwara. The Indian state has once again proved to be a killer in Kashmir. Three people have lost their lives because the Indian armed forces and the J&K Police decided to defend themselves against people protesting against what they perceived to be a soldier’s harassment and molestation a Kashmiri woman.
The troops that defend India’s honour, unity and integrity and other such stuff have been trained to shoot to kill rather than answer a town’s questions about the sense of impunity that the Armed Forces Special Powers Act and the entire apparatus of a de-facto military occupation gives to Indian soldiers in the Kashmir valley. Lets stop pretending this is an exceptional situation, an excess, an anomaly, or even an instance of troopers going rogue. Whatever be the facts of the case, if the name the village of Kunan Poshpora, or of two women called Nilofar and Asiya mean anything to you, you will know that a predatory sexual profile is part of the operational signature of the Indian armed forces and local police in Kashmir.